PIRE is NSF's (National Science Foundation, USA) flagship international programme to support high quality research and education projects across all disciplines. The programme aims to leverage the resources of individual funding agencies towards advancement of knowledge and the individual efforts of research groups cutting across national boundaries. The merit of the proposal is ascertained in terms of distinct advancement of knowledge encompassing creativity, originality and transformational character and the competence of investigating team. Special emphasis is put on the collaborative element.
The current PIRE solicitation is now open wef June, 2016. The final awards to successful applicants will be announced in June/July, 2017, after going through the overall evaluation process. In this round, NSF expects to generate 8–12 awards and contribute about $ 8–12 million annually over a five year period. NSF provides funds to US researchers under PIRE programme while other collaborators outside US have to arrange funding through their counterpart funding agencies.
SERB (Science & Engineering Research Board, India) has entered into an understanding with NSF to partner the programme. Indian researchers and research groups are encouraged to participate through their US collaborators. SERB will provide necessary financial support to such proposals, on the Indian side, if they are so found support worthy through the merit review system of NSF / SERB. Interested parties are advised to visit NSF website for details at
All areas of Science and Engineering are eligible for support. It may be noted that NSF doesn’t support medical research, hence, ‘medicine’ is excluded from the scope of this call.
Individual scientists and research groups from academic institutions, research laboratories and stand-alone / non-profit R&D institutions, which are otherwise eligible for normal DST / SERB grants, are eligible for support under PIRE programme. Normally, such institutions should be running PhD level programmes during preceding five years.