smart city

NSF seeks smart-community research

The National Science Foundation is funding smart community research that addresses the technological and social dimensions of smart and connected communities. 

The NSF Smart and Connected Communities program aims to accelerate the development of the scientific and engineering foundations that will support smart and connected communities. It includes the management of data, computing and network resources; engineering approaches, algorithms and modeling frameworks for understanding complex infrastructure- and community-related data; sensors, controls and feedback systems; persistent connectivity; and improved cybersecurity.

All proposals must have four key components:

  • Integrated research that addresses the technological and social dimensions of smart and connected communities.
  • Community engagement activities.
  • A management plan that describes how the project will be managed across disciplines, institutions and community entities.
  • An evaluation plan including goals, milestones and metrics for evaluation.

“This program is set apart by the community engagement,” Meghan Houghton, staff associate for strategic engagements at NSF, said during a Feb. 6 presentation at the 2018 Global City Teams Challenge (GCTC) Kickoff.  “We are looking for research motivated by community needs that ultimately looks to pilot innovations in the community and develop the solutions in partnership with the community.”

NSF expects to award a total of $19.3M to between seven and 15 projects, and applicants may request from $750,000 to $3 million for a period of up to four years.

NSF has distributed funding for smart communities projects through GCTC and US Ignite projects.

More information on the program can be found here.

Editor's note: This article was updated Feb. 6 to correct the relationship between GCTC and NSF grantees.

About the Author

Sara Friedman is a reporter/producer for GCN, covering cloud, cybersecurity and a wide range of other public-sector IT topics.

Before joining GCN, Friedman was a reporter for Gambling Compliance, where she covered state issues related to casinos, lotteries and fantasy sports. She has also written for Communications Daily and Washington Internet Daily on state telecom and cloud computing. Friedman is a graduate of Ithaca College, where she studied journalism, politics and international communications.

Friedman can be contacted at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter @SaraEFriedman.

Click here for previous articles by Friedman.

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