The National Science Foundation (NSF) is making major changes to the way the research community registers for NSF accounts and maintains account and user profile information in FastLane and Research.gov. Effective March 26, NSF is introducing a new centralized and streamlined account registration process in Research.gov for the research community that will provide each new user with a single profile and unique identifier (i.e., NSF ID) for signing in to FastLane and Research.gov for proposal and award activities.
The new account management functionality will:
- Allow users to create and self-manage accounts, including personal information and role requests;
- Eliminate the need for organizational Administrators to create accounts and maintain profile information for their users, allowing Administrators to focus on managing roles for their organizations through a dashboard with functions to approve, disapprove, assign, and remove roles; and
- Replace the existing FastLane and Research.gov account management functions.
Existing NSF Accounts
Existing NSF account holders, including Grants.gov and Application Submission Web Service (ASWS) users, will be migrated to the new account management system through a simple, one-time operation when initially signing in to FastLane or Research.gov after the new functionality is released. Account holders will be required to verify information to transfer it to the new system. Each user will have one NSF ID per the Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (NSF 18-1), Chapter I.G.4.
- Users with existing NSF accounts can access the NSF ID Lookup page for their NSF ID. Forgotten passwords for established NSF accounts may be retrieved here.
- New users will be able to register directly with NSF through Research.gov on or after March 26, 2018, via this link: https://www.research.gov/accountmgmt/#/registration. Note that this link will not work until March 26, 2018.
Notes About Grants.gov and ASWS
Beginning on March 26, 2018, the Principal Investigator (PI), all co-PIs, and the Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) listed on a Grants.gov proposal must all be registered with NSF prior to proposal submission. NSF IDs for the PI, all co-PIs, and the AOR listed will need to be included in the proposal submission.
- When a proposal is submitted to NSF on or after March 26, 2018, through Grants.gov and ASWS, the NSF system will cross-check the DUNS number and organization name with NSF records.
- If there is no match to the DUNS number and/or organization name, the proposal will be rejected and the PI/AOR listed on the proposal submission will receive an email notifying that the proposal submission was not accepted by NSF.
- Currently, for proposals submitted via Grants.gov or ASWS, the NSF system registers organizations and will allow proposal submission in cases where there is a mismatch of the DUNS number and/or organization name with NSF records; however, this will no longer be possible effective March 26, 2018.
New NSF Registration Requirements for Organizations
- Organizations new to NSF will also register via the account management system in Research.gov.
- New organizations will be able to register directly with NSF through Research.gov on or after March 26, 2018, via this link: https://www.research.gov/accountmgmt/#/registration . Note that this link will not work until March 26, 2018.
- Beginning on March 26, 2018, before a new organization can register with NSF, it must first be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM; https://www.sam.gov) and have a data universal numbering system (DUNS) number.
- Organizations not already registered with NSF should be aware that completion of the SAM registration process could take up to two weeks.
- Note that the vast majority of universities are already registered with NSF via FastLane.
The new centralized account management functionality is being released first to the Administrator, PI, AOR, Sponsored Project Officer (SPO), Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) Coordinating Official and Financial Official, and Award Cash Management Service (ACM$) groups. NSF plans to eventually expand the new functionality in the future to additional groups including proposal reviewers, GRFP applicants, and NSF staff.
NSF is currently finalizing new account management training resources such as job aids, Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), and instructional videos. These materials will soon be available on an “About Account Management” page accessible on the Research.gov homepage.