Along with the review of the intellectual merit of a proposal, the National Science Foundation reviews the merit of its Broader Impacts – the societal impact of the proposed research. Each proposal submitted to the NSF must include a section about its intended Broader Impacts. According to the NSF Grant Proposal Guide, these Broader Impacts (BI) are reflected in such questions as:

  • “How well does the activity advance discovery and understanding while promoting teaching, training, and learning?
  • How well does the proposed activity broaden the participation of underrepresented groups (e.g., gender, ethnicity, disability, geographic, etc.)?
  • To what extent will it enhance the infrastructure for research and education, such as facilities, instrumentation, networks, and partnerships?
  • Will the results be disseminated broadly to enhance scientific and technological understanding?
  • What may be the benefits of the proposed activity to society?"

MSU’s Office of University Outreach and Engagement offers the following support:

  • Identifying possible avenues for BI activities
  • Review of BI statement on proposals
  • Assistance with finding and connecting with MSU and/or community partners to support BI activities
  • Consulting about evaluation of your BI activities
  • With grant consultants from OVPRGS, advice in preparing BI statements

Contact: Laurie Van Egeren, Assistant Provost for University-Community Partnerships