Memorandum of Understanding between FAPESP and The National Science Foundation (NSF)

I. Intent of Participants

This Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) establishes the guidance by which the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) (collectively the Participants) intend to encourage and support interaction in areas of mutual interest.

This MOU is intended to provide a structure through which the Participants can share information about funding priorities and can coordinate the development and support of research activities, research facilities, as well as science and engineering education as mutually decided through subsequent arrangements (see Section IV.B below).

II. Authorities

Activities under this MOU fall within the scope and are subject to the provisions of the Agreement between the Federative Republic of Brazil and the United States of America Relating to Cooperation in Science and Technology (S&T Agreement), signed at Brasilia on February 6, 1984, as amended and extended.

III. Purpose

NSF and FAPESP have a history of collaboration in supporting research through both bilateral activities. The Participants understand that as research becomes increasingly global in nature it is important to continue to identify and develop flexible mechanisms to foster and support collaborative international research. The overall purpose of this MOU is to enable and facilitate research collaboration between U.S. and Brazilian researchers. This collaboration expects to generate valuable discoveries and innovations that may lead to improvements in multiple areas of science and technology. Any collaborations under this MOU are to be described in a written arrangement, such as a solicitation, memorandum, management plan, or other type of document appropriate to the activity, signed by both Participants. Cooperative activities may include but are not limited to: lead agency arrangements, joint research solicitations, joint workshops, digitization of biological collections, training of undergraduate and graduate students and other activities that would involve providing supplementary funding to existing awards under the rules of both signatories.

IV. General Provisions

A. General

This MOU outlines areas of mutual interest and the general guidelines for interaction. It is not intended to cover all areas of mutual interest. The areas covered by this MOU can include coordination of specific projects, programs, and facilities. The specific coordination may include research and education activities; facilities and instrumentation; and data and cyberinfrastructure. NSF and FAPESP may decide to extend this MOU to additional directorates or offices and research areas.

Examples of current areas of cooperation or future areas of potential cooperation, pursuant to this arrangement, include:

  • the Belmont Forum,
  • Biodiversity on a Changing Planet,
  • climate change,
  • infectious diseases,
  • quantum science,
  • racial equity in STEM education, and
  • cognitive sciences.

B. Projects and Activities

Specific activities between the Participants should be detailed in writing appropriate to the nature of the activity and the Participants’ expectations and signed at the NSF Assistant Director level and by FAPESP’s Scientific Director , or their delegates.

C. Disclosure of Information

While fulfilling their responsibilities under this MOU, the Participants may exchange information generated by themselves or others. The Participants understand they are subject only to terms of the S&T Agreement and their own applicable laws regarding information disclosure or privacy.

D. Duration, Modification, and Discontinuation

This MOU is intended to commence upon signature of both Participants and to continue for 5 years, unless discontinued earlier by the Participants.

This MOU may be modified at any time by written decision of both Participants.

This MOU may be discontinued at any time by either Participant with the Participants endeavoring to provide 90 days advance written notice of discontinuation, or sooner by mutual written decision of both Participants.

E. Resolution of Differences

Should differences arise under this MOU, or modifications thereto, that cannot be resolved between the Designated Representatives of each Participant, the area(s) of difference should be stated in writing by each Participant and presented to the other Participant at the Assistant Director or equivalent level at NSF and FAPESP’s Scientific Director for consideration.

F. Designated Representatives

The Designated Representatives for NSF are the Partnership Advisors for each Directorate and the OISE Program Director (PD) covering Brazil. The OISE PD will serve as the main point of contact for coordination within NSF and with FAPESP representatives.

The Designated Representative for FAPESP is the Scientific Directorate Manager for Research Collaborations.

V. Effect of MOU

A. This MOU is in no way intended to restrict the FAPESP or NSF from participating in similar activities or arrangements with other entities.

B. This MOU is intended strictly for internal management purposes for each of the Participants. It is not intended to be legally enforceable and is not intended to create legal obligations on the part of either of the Participants.

C. This MOU is neither a fiscal nor a funds obligation document. Nothing in this MOU authorizes or is intended to obligate the Participants to expend, exchange, or reimburse funds, services, or supplies, or transfer or receive anything of value. Nothing in this MOU may be construed to obligate FAPESP or NSF to any current or future expenditure of resources in advance of the availability of appropriations. Nor does this MOU obligate FAPESP or NSF to spend funds on any particular project or purpose, even if funds are available.

VI. Signatures

MOU signed on March 27, 2023.