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NSF Broader Impacts Resources

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Broader Impacts Video

As part of Stanford's Grant Writing Academy, OSO Assistant Director Maiken Bruhis presents a 9-minute video addressing NSF's Broader Impacts criterion and provides answers to many frequently asked questions. View it here.

Broader Impact Guiding Principles

What does effective BI look like? Faculty, researchers, staff, and administrators agree there is a lack of uniformity in evaluating BI by NSF review panels. With a goal of producing a tool that would result in more clarity and consistency, the National Alliance for Broader Impacts (NABI)  has released this succinct document that is not prescriptive, but gives reviewers the necessary guidance to determine if a BI plan is well structured and likely to be impactful.

Broader Impacts Toolkit

NSF seeks outreach activities that address one or more of these Broader Impacts: 

  • Advance discovery and understanding while promoting teaching, training, and learning
  • Broaden participation of underrepresented groups
  • Enhance infrastructure for research and education
  • Broaden dissemination to enhance scientific and technological understanding
  • Provide benefits to society.

 Need help generating ideas to fulfill these requirements? Click on the red title above.

Broader Impacts Wizard

The Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence (COSEE) based at Rutgers University developed a Broader Impacts Wizard to help researchers develop a broader impact statement that will satisfy NSF and improve researchers' ability to communicate their science. The BI Wizard provides a user interface that guides users through a series of six well-defined steps necessary for the construction and implementation of a broader impact statement required in research proposals. The goal of this "smart" software, which outputs information based upon selections made by the user, is to help researchers identify their target audience and plan appropriate BI activities, budget, objectives, and evaluation plan. This process culminates in a summary report, including user input and additional supporting information to help plan and draft a broader impact project. Report includes references that can be cited.

NSF Perspectives on Broader Impacts

NSF released a new report in November 2014 with a rationale for its focus on Broader Impacts, a summary of the April 2014 Broader Impacts Infrastructure Summit, and some examples of effective BI activities and programs.