OSP FO# 11-018

AGENCY: National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)

PROGRAM: Grants for Arts Projects

OBJECTIVES: The National Endowment for the Arts provides support to organizations in the following categories:

(1) Art Works—Awards in this category support the following four outcomes:

–    Creation: The creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence,
–    Engagement: Public engagement with diverse and excellent art,
–    Learning: Lifelong learning in the arts, and
–    Livability: The strengthening of communities through the arts.

Within these areas, innovative projects are strongly encouraged. Innovative projects are characterized as those that are likely to prove transformative with the potential for meaningful change, whether in the development or enhancement of new or existing art forms, new approaches to the creation or presentation of art, or new ways of engaging the public with art; are distinctive, offering fresh insights and new value for their fields and/or the public through unconventional solutions; and have the potential to be shared and/or emulated, or are likely to lead to other innovations. The Arts Endowment is particularly interested in projects that extend the arts to underserved populations—those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability.

(2) Challenge America Fast-Track—Awards in this category offer support primarily to small and mid-sized organizations for projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations—those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability. Age alone (e.g., youth, seniors) does not qualify a group as underserved; at least one of the underserved characteristics noted here also must be present. This category encourages and supports the following two outcomes:

–    Engagement: Public engagement with diverse and excellent art,
–    Livability: The strengthening of communities through the arts.

Partnerships can be valuable to the success of these projects. While not required, applicants are encouraged to consider partnerships among organizations, both in and outside of the arts, as appropriate to their project. Each applicant must present a simple, straightforward project that reflects only one of the following project types: (a) an arts event that will feature one or more guest artists; (b) the unified promotion of community-wide arts activities and resources to enhance cultural tourism or activities in cultural districts; (c) the development of professionally directed public art projects; or (d) design activities for new or existing cultural facilities or civic spaces.

ELIGIBILITY RESTRICTIONS: An organization may submit only one application to one of the Grants for Arts Projects categories outlined above. For most organizations, these categories represent the full range of funding options for the entire year. Applicants should examine the goal and purposes of their project as well as the review criteria of these categories, and apply to the one category that is most relevant. The Arts Endowment will not transfer applications between categories. The following are exceptions to the limitation:

Art Works: A parent organization that comprises separately identifiable and independent components (e.g., a university campus that has a presenting organization and a radio station) may submit an application for each such component. In addition, a parent organization also may submit one application on its own behalf for a distinctly different project. The parent organization must meet the eligibility requirements for all applicants. An independent component must be a unit that is both programmatically and administratively distinct from the parent organization, have its own staff and budget, and generally have an independent board that has substantial responsibility for oversight and management. To qualify as independent, a component should be equivalent to a stand-alone institution with a separate mission. Academic departments of colleges and universities and programs or projects of organizations do not qualify as independent components.

In addition to submitting an application on its own behalf, an eligible organization may serve either as the lead applicant or as the primary consortium partner in one consortium application for a distinctly different project. If an organization chooses not to submit an application on its own behalf, it may serve either as the lead applicant or as the primary consortium partner in two consortium applications for two distinctly different projects. Organizations that are considering serving as the lead applicant of a consortium are strongly advised to consult with Arts Endowment staff before preparing an application.

Challenge America Fast-Track: For this category, exceptions to the one-application rule are made only for parent organizations that have separately identifiable and independent components; this includes city or county governments. A second application from an organization as a lead applicant for a consortium or as a primary consortium partner is not eligible. If an organization applies to the Challenge America Fast-Track category, it may not submit another application to the Art Works category.

Internal BU Deadline: January 28, 2011

Art Works: March 10, 2011 or August 11, 2011 (please see complete program guidelines for information on the appropriate deadline for each artistic discipline or field)

Challenge America Fast-Track: May 26, 2011

FUNDING INFORMATION: Art Works awards will be made in amounts ranging from $10,000 to $100,000. Challenge America Fast-Track grants will be made for $10,000. All grants require a nonfederal match of at least 1 to 1. For example, if an organization receives a $10,000 grant, the total eligible project costs must be at least $20,000 and the organization must provide at least $10,000 toward the project from nonfederal sources.

AGENCY CONTACT: Please visit the NEA website at http://www.nea.gov/grants/apply/Visualarts.html for contact information for the appropriate program officer.

INTERNAL REVIEW PROCESS: To screen proposals for this competition an internal deadline has been established. Principal Investigators (PIs) interested in submitting an application should provide the following proposal information to their Associate Dean by Friday, January 28, 2011 for internal review purposes:

1. Project description (maximum length 4 pages) should include items a–d:
(a) describe the artists, arts organizations, works of art, or services that the project will involve, as appropriate;
(b) address the project’s potential impact on the artistic and/or cultural heritage of the nation, region, or field, as well as the project’s potential impact on artists and the artistic community;
(c) address the potential of the project to broaden access to, expand and diversify the audiences for, or strengthen communities through the arts; and
(d) outline plans for documentation, evaluation, and dissemination, as appropriate, of the project.

2. Budget and budget justification (two pages). Itemize all cost-sharing commitments being requested from the University.

3. Biographical sketches: include brief biographical sketches for the key personnel involved in the project.

4. Review comments from any previous NEA Grants to Arts Organization submission.

Following the Dean’s assessment of the internal application, it will be forwarded to OSP-CRC Director Joan Kirkendall for review and then to the Office of the VP for Research for final selection. PIs will be informed if their proposal is selected for submission and advised of institutional cost-sharing commitments in time to complete and process their proposal for final review.

REMARKS: Applications must be submitted electronically using the Grants.gov system. Instructions and forms are available on the Grants.Gov website (http://www.grants.gov). Additional information about Grants.gov for BU Investigators can be obtained on the OSP website at: http://www.bu.edu/osp/proposal-preparation/electronic-submission/. Please contact the OSP Assistant Director assigned to your school or department as soon as possible to coordinate submission through the Grants.gov system.

Complete program guidelines and application material (CFDA# 45.024) may be obtained from the website listed above or from the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). Please distribute this notice to any faculty or staff members who might be interested in the information. For more information, please contact the OSP at X3-4365 or ospinfo@bu.edu, or visit the OSP web site at http://www.bu.edu/osp.