The Simons Foundation invites nominations for Simons Investigators in the Mathematical Modeling of Living Systems (MMLS), a joint program of the Mathematics and Physical Sciences and Life Sciences divisions of the Simons Foundation. Investigators in MMLS are outstanding scientists, often with mathematics or theoretical physics backgrounds, now engaged in research based on mathematical modeling in the life sciences.
Rationale and scope: New approaches in mathematically based modeling are making increasingly important contributions to the life sciences. The MMLS program aims to support such approaches and foster a scientific culture of theory-experiment collaboration similar to that prevailing in the physical sciences. To encourage young researchers to pursue this endeavor, the MMLS program will provide a long-term, stable base of support, enabling a focus on model-based approaches to important issues in the life sciences.
A broad spectrum of research areas within the life sciences will be considered, ranging from cellular-level issues of organization, regulation, signaling, and morphogenic dynamics to the properties of organisms and ecology, as well as neuroscience and evolution; however, preference will be given to areas in which modeling approaches are less established and, for this reason, bioinformatics- and genomics-related proposals fall outside the scope of the program. In all cases, preference will be given to work that relates closely to experiment, developing mathematical models that can explain data, suggest new classes of experiments, and introduce important new concepts.
Basis for Awards: The intent of the program is to help launch the research careers of outstanding junior scientists. Nominees to the program will normally be in the first few years of their first faculty appointment. Nominations will be evaluated on the basis of nominees' potential for scientific accomplishment.
Number of Awards: In this cycle, the foundation expects to appoint eight Simons Investigators in MMLS.
Terms of Awards: A Simons Investigator in MMLS is appointed for a period of five years. Appointments will begin August 1 of the award year.
An Investigator will receive research support in an amount initially set at $100,000 per year. An additional $10,000 per year will be provided to the Investigator's department. The award is administered through the institution at which the Investigator is appointed, and this institution will receive an additional 20 percent per year in indirect costs on the Investigator and departmental funds.
$660,000 ($100K research support + $10K for PI department + 20% indirects ($22K) x 5 years)
Applicants are encouraged to consult with their Associate Deans for Research prior to internal submission to assure they meet eligibility criteria and their projects meet stated program objectives.
To be a Simons Investigator in MMLS, a scientist must be engaged in research related to the program and must not previously have been a Simons Investigator. He/she must have a primary appointment as a faculty member at an educational institution in the United States, Canada, or United Kingdom, on a campus within these countries, and the primary department affiliation must have a Ph.D. program. At the time of appointment, an Investigator should be in the early stages of an academic career (within eight years of the start of his/her first faculty position) and, typically, be holding an assistant professorship or equivalent position.
The foundation reserves the right to determine eligibility, but, generally, a "primary appointment" is defined as one where the Investigator is a full-time employee of an academic institution with a teaching load that is comparable to that of other faculty members in the same department. Investigators may transfer their awards to new educational institutions within the United States, Canada or United Kingdom, subject to approval from the foundation and the old and new institutions. The award will be interrupted or terminated, at the foundation's discretion, if an Investigator takes up a primary long-term position at a research institute, national laboratory or other institution outside the United States, Canada or United Kingdom, or another campus of their current institution, which falls outside the United States, Canada or United Kingdom; a for-profit organization; or accepts a major administrative responsibility that significantly reduces the time available for research.
Investigators are not eligible to hold a Simons Fellowship for the duration of the Investigator award.
Investigators are expected to attend annual meetings, held at the Simons Foundation each fall, to discuss their activities. Costs associated with attending this meeting will be covered by the foundation.
For consideration as a finalist, investigators must submit the following proposal materials as a single PDF email attachment to Stephanie Endy at firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 5:00 p.m. on August 21, 2018:
- A one-page, 12-point font, one-inch margin cover letter, including PI name, department/division, school/college, project title and brief summary of the project, and
- A federal-grant-style biosketch (typically NIH or NSF).
Final nominees will be notified of their selection by August 31, 2018.
Final proposal must be received by the Office of Research Administration by October 24, 2018 at 5:00pm EST.
Final proposal must be received by the sponsor by October 31, 2018 at 5:00pm EST.