The National Alliance for Broader Impacts has published a set of guiding questions to help faculty address the broader impacts section of their NSF proposals. Broader Impacts are those elements of a scientific project that have the potential to benefit society. Sometimes these are outgrowths of the research questions themselves (e.g. contributions to solving health or environmental problems) and sometimes they are associated with the research process (e.g. providing opportunities for undergraduate student research experiences). Either way, reviewers will examine the ways broader impacts are described, planned and assessed. Broader Impacts should never be an “add-on” to the research proposal. They should be described in a coherent and measurable plan of work, just like the research plan.
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