Research Foundation Insights: Spring-Summer 2019

As the organization that supports the campus research community, we continue to be inspired by the talent and passion evidenced by SJSU faculty, staff, and student research endeavors. These efforts include advocacy programs in our local community, partnerships with government agencies to examine transportation issues and infrastructure, and progressive science and engineering research. We are also excited about the emergence of new initiatives that are creating strategic partnerships with Silicon Valley and its culture of creativity, technology, and innovation.

The Research Foundation is committed to supporting SJSU by providing robust services to all of those engaged in our research enterprise. Over the next few months we will be rolling out key workflow initiatives that reduce the administrative burden on our PIs and project administrators. Stay tuned!

Newsletter Contents

SJSU Students Win Big at CSU Research Competition

Three SJSU Students took top prizes at the CSU-wide Student Research Competition, which took place on April 26 and 27 at CSU Fullerton.

Vanshika GuptaVanshika Gupta took 1st place in the category of Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Undergraduate Students,with her project titled "Investigating Macromolecular Structures For The Transformation Of Greenhouse Gases Into Liquid Fuels." Vanshika's mentor was Dr. Madalyn Radlauer, Department of Chemistry, College of Science.


Sarah OrtegaSarah Ortega took 1st place in the category of Engineering and Computer Science, Graduate Students, with her project titled "Exploring a Hybrid Design for a Short to Medium Range Transport Aircraft." Her mentor was Dr. Nikos Mourtos, Department Chair,Aerospace Engineering, College of Engineering.


Sambhav GuptaSambhav Gupta won 2nd place in the Business, Economics and Public Administration, Undergraduate and Graduate Students categoryfor his project titled "Artificially Intelligent (AI) Tutors in the Classroom: A Need Assessment Study of Designing Chatbots to Support Student Success." Sambhav's mentor was Dr. Yu Chen,School of Information Systems and Technology.Lucas College and Graduate School of Business.

By the Numbers: Fiscal Year 2017-18

Interesting Facts About the Research Foundation

Ranked #2 out of 23 CSU campuses in terms of extramurally funded sponsored grants and contracts (San Diego State is first).

Provided $1.1 million in indirect revenue and strategic investment into the campus community.

Submitted 290 proposals valued at more than$94 million.

Received 244 awards valued at more than$54 million.

Managed more than 300 grants and contracts.

Employed 433 students on sponsored research projects.

Engaged 176 faculty members on sponsored grants or research projects.

Major Changes to the 2019 National Science Foundation PAPPG

NSF Logo

This year the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced the release of its 2019 Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG). The new version includes a number of significant changes, enhancements, and clarifications. A few of the critical changes are highlighted below:

Full Proposals – Chapter I.D.3, incorporates reminders regarding the importance of strict adherence to the rules of proper scholarship and attribution throughout the entire proposal and award lifecycle. Serious failure to adhere to such standards can result in findings of research misconduct.

Subawards – Chapter II.C.2.g(vi)(e), clarifies that the description of the work to be performed by the subaward must be included in the project description. Additionally, except for the purpose of obtaining goods and services for the proposer’s own use, no portion of the proposed activity may be subawarded or transferred to another organization without prior written NSF authorization.

Types of Proposals – Chapter II.E, specifies that “RAPID”, “EAGER” and “RAISE” must be included in the proposal project title. Language in this version indicates that these proposal types are not eligible for reconsideration.

Biographical Sketch(es) – Chapter II.C.2.f, must now be uploaded separately for each individual identified on the proposal as senior personnel. Biographical sketches for Other Personnel and for Equipment proposals, however, should be uploaded as a single PDF file in the Other Supplementary Documents section of the proposal.

Synergistic Activities – Chapter II.C.2.f(i)(d), has been revised to specify that a list should include up to five distinct examples that demonstrate the broader impact of the individual’s professional and scholarly activities that focuses on the integration and transfer of knowledge as well as its creation.

Please note that the Research Foundation’s OSP staff will review each biographical sketch for compliance prior to submission.

Participant Support – Chapter II.C.2.g(v),has been updated to clarify when an individual should be classified as a participant or a speaker at a conference. This section also has been updated to clarify that participant support costs may not be budgeted to cover room rental fees, catering costs, supplies, etc., related to an NSF-sponsored conference.

Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) –Chapter IX.B,now includes new content to state NSF’s responsibility regarding allegations of research misconduct. NSF will not tolerate research misconduct in proposing or performing research funded by NSF, in reviewing research proposals submitted to NSF, or in reporting research results funded by NSF. Upon findings of research misconduct, NSF will take appropriate action against individuals or organizations.

Sexual Assault – Chapter XI.A.1.g, includes new NSF content regarding harassment that implements NSF Important Notice No. 144. This policy articulates that the NSF will not tolerate sexual harassment, other forms of harassment, or sexual assault within the agency, at awardee organizations, or anywhere NSF-funded science and education are conducted.

To access the entire list of changes and the complete 2019 PAPPG, visit the NSF website: Proposal and Award Policies and Procedures Guide [pdf].

Why We Must E-Verify... Again


The Research Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation, and is a completely separate organization from San Jose State University.

For this reason, all Research Foundation new hires, including those who are or have been employed by San Jose State University, are required by the federal government to complete the E-Verify process at the Research Foundation.

In addition to new employees, anyonewhose status is terminated or who has had no active assignment with the Research Foundation for the last six months is considered a re-hire and must go through theE-Verify process.

The federal government requires the use of E-Verify if a businessreceives more than $100,000 in federal funding. Because the Research Foundation does receive more than that amount of federal funding, we are required to follow federal E-Verify guidelines.

E-Verify is an electronic version of the traditional I-9 that verifies that a potential employee is eligible to work in the U.S. The program is collaboratively administered by Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and the Social Security Administration (SSA). Information collected through E-Verify is checked against the DHS, USCIS and SSA databases, and may also display a photo for an employer to match to the employee’s I-9 documents. After the I-9 data and the documents are entered, E-verify then informs an employer whether the new hire is eligible to work in the U.S.

For more information on the E-Verify process please visit: E-Verify

Looking Ahead

Project Administration Guide 2.0 (June)

Merit-Based Performance Evaluations (June – September)

Electronic Routing Using DocuSign for the following (July):

  • Faculty Appointment Forms
  • Reimburse Salary Authorization (RSA) for H1-B Visa Faculty
  • Reimburse Salary Authorization (RSA) for Faculty Release Time

PI Appreciation Ice Cream Social (Thursday, September 26, 2019)