Grants Database

The Foundation awards approximately 200 grants per year (excluding the Sloan Research Fellowships), totaling roughly $80 million dollars in annual commitments in support of research and education in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and economics. This database contains grants for currently operating programs going back to 2008. For grants from prior years and for now-completed programs, see the annual reports section of this website.

Grants Database

Grantee
Amount
City
Year
  • grantee: Harvard University
    amount: $277,661
    city: Cambridge, MA
    year: 2012

    To develop, refine, and promulgate an agenda for energy efficiency research

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Behavioral Economics and Household Finance (BEHF)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Robert Stavins

    The "Energy Efficiency Paradox" refers to the stubborn fact that energy efficiency improvements judged cost effective in theory nevertheless fail to find wide adoption in practice. Surprisingly few people, for example, weatherize their homes even when given all sorts of information and incentives. Though many researchers have studied aspects of the paradox, no serious, concerted research initiative to understand it has been conducted. This grant supports a project by economists Robert Stavins and Richard Newell to lay the groundwork for such a comprehensive initiative. Stavins and Newell will conduct a review of the relevant economic literature on the Energy Efficiency Paradox, hold a conference, publish a monograph, and provide other scholarly infrastructure, including a shared, online, and annotated bibliographic database of relevant research.

    To develop, refine, and promulgate an agenda for energy efficiency research

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  • grantee: University of California, Berkeley
    amount: $855,763
    city: Berkeley, CA
    year: 2012

    To plan, coordinate, and facilitate interdisciplinary research on energy efficiency

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Behavioral Economics and Household Finance (BEHF)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Catherine Wolfram

    The "Energy Efficiency Paradox" refers to the stubborn fact that energy efficiency improvements judged cost effective in theory nevertheless fail to find wide adoption in practice. Surprisingly few people, for example, weatherize their homes even when given all sorts of information and incentives. Though many researchers have studied aspects of the paradox, no serious, concerted research initiative to understand it has been conducted. Funds from this grant support the efforts of Elizabeth Bailey at the University of California, Berkeley to convene a working group to recruit and resource coordinated research projects that can help resolve the Energy Efficiency Paradox. Funded activities include efforts to build an active community of economists, engineers, and behavioral scientists to conduct coordinated research in cooperation with business owners, investors, consumers, utility officials, energy entrepreneurs, and public policymakers. The Bailey working group will seek financial support for energy efficiency research and provide support resources to associated researchers, including setting methodological and metadata standards, facilitating data access, and supporting archiving infrastructure.

    To plan, coordinate, and facilitate interdisciplinary research on energy efficiency

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  • grantee: University of Pennsylvania
    amount: $281,029
    city: Philadelphia, PA
    year: 2012

    To facilitate research on household decision-making by systematically documenting data, including choice architecture information, about state Health Insurance Exchanges

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Behavioral Economics and Household Finance (BEHF)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Thomas Baker

    The Affordable Care Act presents a special opportunity to research how different choice architectures affect consumer choice in a comprehensive manner. At least 15 states plan to design their own exchanges, which are expected to vary significantly. Even exchanges that adopt the federal template will operate with different participating insurers, plans offered, and price controls or other state regulations. Thousands of individuals will purchase plans off the exchanges, opting for one of a set of plans offered. Funds from this grant support a project by Tom Baker at the University of Pennsylvania to ensure that comprehensive data on all these exchanges will be documented and made easily available to researchers. In cooperation with regulators and other officials, Baker and his team will collect and compile details on each exchange's choice architecture, product menu, relevant regulations, and much more. Such data should be useful for behavioral economics and beyond, including studies of adverse selection, market design, and price distortions. Additional funds will support a preliminary workshop for a broad spectrum of fellow researchers to discuss suggestions and build consensus about data collection specifics.

    To facilitate research on household decision-making by systematically documenting data, including choice architecture information, about state Health Insurance Exchanges

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  • grantee: National Academy of Sciences
    amount: $200,000
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2012

    To enhance, disseminate, and implement the findings of a study about improving postdoctoral training and career prospects

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Economic Analysis of Science and Technology (EAST)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Kevin Finneran

    Much research in the United States depends on the labor of postdoctoral fellows. Yet system for hiring, training, and compensating postdocs, however, is far from healthy. There were more than 50,000 postdocs in the United States in 2003. Their median salary was just $38,000, a meager amount considering that many are aged 30 or above and have devoted years to specialized training. Many have no health insurance and receive no career training. This grant provides support a report by the National Academy of Science's Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy (COSEPUP) that examines the strengths and weaknesses of the postdoctoral system in the United States and makes recommendations for its improvement. Grant funds will support data collection and analysis, as well as for two workshops to engage academic leaders, research funders, and postdoctoral fellows about the committee's findings. Additional funds will support a project to compile and analyze comprehensive data on U.S. postdoctoral fellows' immigration status and career outcomes.

    To enhance, disseminate, and implement the findings of a study about improving postdoctoral training and career prospects

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  • grantee: New York University
    amount: $401,624
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2012

    To analyze the economics of labor markets for information technology workers using administrative datasets

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Economic Analysis of Science and Technology (EAST)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Prasanna Tambe

    Funds from this grant support the research of Prasanna Tambe of New York University, who proposes to exploit new sources of administrative data to shed light on the labor market economics of the IT workforce. Using millions of administrative records collected by popular job-related social media sites LinkedIn and CareerBuilder, Tambe will examine variations in the labor market behaviors of IT workers and firms, examining how the acquisition of IT skills by employees in a firm affect the firm's productivity, how firms value the acquisition of new IT skills, and how employee migration between firms affects the rate of adoption of new technology.

    To analyze the economics of labor markets for information technology workers using administrative datasets

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  • grantee: Dartmouth College
    amount: $132,458
    city: Hanover, NH
    year: 2012

    To measure the spread of open access in academic publishing and to test the impact of open access on citation counts and other indicators of research quality

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Economic Analysis of Science and Technology (EAST)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Christopher Snyder

    Funds from this grant support the work of Dartmouth's Chris Snyder as he studies the spread of open access publishing in academia and the impact this spread has had on scientific publication. Snyder's research is divided into three related projects. The first is to construct novel ways to measure the spread of open-access publication that take into account both the quality and quantity of the papers published. The second is to evaluate whether open access actually a paper's citation rate. The third is to examine whether open access journals exhibit less "publication bias," that is, the tendency to search for, cook up, and release only findings that significantly support the hypothesis under investigation. Most open access journals depend on the willingness of authors to pay publication fees. Precise impact measures for the thousands of new open access journals, together with careful estimates of the relationship between open access and journal quality, could therefore have significant impact on publishers, policymakers, academics, and their funders.

    To measure the spread of open access in academic publishing and to test the impact of open access on citation counts and other indicators of research quality

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  • grantee: American Institutes for Research
    amount: $795,553
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2012

    To study scientific collaboration and productivity at the project team level

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Economic Analysis of Science and Technology (EAST)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Julia Lane

    Evidence suggests that cooperation among scientists is a growing and important factor determining the productivity of research. The longitudinal data needed for a comprehensive understanding of this trend and its implications, however, are only just becoming available. This grant funds research by a team composed of economist Paula Stephan, econometrician Jacques Mairesse and engineer Lee Fleming to study the model dynamics and productivity of scientific teams. Funds will support data collection and analysis, along with a major conference to discuss research findings and examine the implications for science policy.

    To study scientific collaboration and productivity at the project team level

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  • grantee: Corporation for National Research Initiatives
    amount: $497,103
    city: Reston, VA
    year: 2012

    To develop and demonstrate an open-source software platform that facilitates interoperability among disparate information systems

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Empirical Economic Research Enablers (EERE)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Laurence Lannom

    The Center for National Research Initiatives (CNRI) is the lead developer of the "Handle System," an open-source, publicly licensed, and popular technology specification for identifying and tracking digital objects. Used by over a thousand different organizations in more than 50 countries, the system deploys identifiers called "handles," that can be used to identify and track everything from scholarly publications to datasets to songs to movies. Unlike URLs, which specify the location where a particular instance of a set of digital information can be found, handles are independent of where the digital object is hosted, allowing users of system to locate a digital object wherever it may be located. Funds from this grant support the continued development and expansion of the Handle System, with a focus on expanding the system so that it works seamlessly across multiple digital object registries disparate data types not previously considered and to demonstrate the system's effectiveness through the development of use cases.

    To develop and demonstrate an open-source software platform that facilitates interoperability among disparate information systems

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  • grantee: Stevens Institute of Technology
    amount: $390,584
    city: Hoboken, NJ
    year: 2012

    To prototype and test algorithms for accurately approximating the state-contingent cash flows of financial contract types

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Empirical Economic Research Enablers (EERE)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Khaldoun Khashanah

    What should financial regulators do about systemic risk? Ideally, many would like to describe, track, and aggregate the implications of nearly every significant financial contract around the world. Though daunting in scope, doing so would be technically quite feasible. The coordination necessary to make such a system work would be much more challenging than building it. Indeed, at smaller scales, professional risk managers already describe, track, and aggregate contract implications every day. Their data systems, however, are ad hoc and proprietary. Both the inputs and outputs of their risk calculations may be totally incomparable across different organizations-or even within the same institution. What's needed is a way to standardize the characterization of financial contracts. An international team led by the Stevens Institute of Technology is already working on the open-source software needed. They claim that the cash flow implications of nearly any financial agreement can be accurately approximated using just 30 standardized "contract types." Like Lego blocks, these can fit together to model quite complicated and comprehensive structures. Their widespread use would give both regulators and financial institutions the ability to "put all the pieces together" and model financial risk in ways that are impossible now. This grant provides funds to support the development and deployment of a pilot open-source "contract typing" software system with the ability to accurately model the cash flow implications of a wide range of financial contracts. Funds will support software development, testing, refinement, infrastructure, and outreach in an attempt to demonstrate the feasibility of such a software system.

    To prototype and test algorithms for accurately approximating the state-contingent cash flows of financial contract types

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  • grantee: The Brookings Institution
    amount: $225,000
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2012

    To demonstrate new ways an economics journal can help curate, visualize, and update the empirical data linked to its articles

    • Program Economics
    • Initiative Empirical Economic Research Enablers (EERE)
    • Sub-program Economic Institutions, Behavior, & Performance
    • Investigator Karen Dynan

    Funds from this grant support a series of data-oriented improvements to the influential Brookings Papers on Economic Activity (BPEA) that will make its papers as replicable, interactive, and technologically empowered as those at the forefront of innovation in other fields. Planned improvements include adding the capacity to include new data as they arrive, thus keeping the analyses and conclusions in a paper up-to-date for years after publication. Also planned are upgrades that will enable papers to come with embedded code and interactive data visualizations that allow readers to test alternative regression specifications, change parameter settings, or adjust the time frame analyzed, all within the paper. Funds would primarily support the requisite technical updates to the BPEA website, with additional monies for user support and for incentive funds for authors who commit to making periodic updates to their data and findings.

    To demonstrate new ways an economics journal can help curate, visualize, and update the empirical data linked to its articles

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