France And Chicago Collaborating in The Sciences (FACCTS) now accepting applications

France And Chicago Collaborating in The Sciences (FACCTS) is a program designed to enhance science at the University of Chicago by encouraging closer relations between researchers in the Physical Sciences Division (PSD), The Biological Sciences Division (BSD), and the Institute for Molecular Engineering (IME) and high-level research teams and institutions of higher education in France. The FACCTS program seeks to accomplish this goal by providing seed funding for new and potentially fruitful project-based collaborations. Through a partnership with Argonne National Laboratory and Fermilab, researchers at these two national laboratories are also eligible for FACCTS support, and are encouraged to apply.

More information about the FACCTS program and an application form are at
Selection criteria
Excellent, important science is necessary for a successful proposal, but it is not the only criterion. The committee will also consider such factors as:

  • The strengths and levels of complementarity between the collaborating partner laboratories
  • The likelihood of a high reward relative to the amount of funding requested
  • The potential for continued collaboration in the medium and long term.

The FACCTS program seeks to help foster a broad range of networks and productive partnerships between Chicago-based research with French colleagues and institutions.  For this reason, when choosing between similarly ranked projects, the committee may use “past FACCTS funding” as a secondary criterion, giving preference to first-time applicants and to individuals whose initiatives have not recently (within the last 2 years) received FACCTS support.

ANL preproposal requirement
Researchers from Argonne National Laboratory who wish to apply for FACCTS support must submit a preproposal by October 9, 2017. Those who submit preproposals will learn on or before October 23, 2017, whether they are invited to submit a full FACCTS proposal. (There is no preproposal process for UChicago- and Fermilab-based researchers.)

Deadlines and key dates

  • October 16, 2017: Deadline for pre-proposals (ANL Researchers only)
  • November 1, 2017: Notification given for all ANL preproposal applicants
  • December 4, 2017: Deadline for FACCTS proposals from UChicago, Argonne National Laboratory, and Fermilab applicants
  • February 28, 2018: Notification given to all applicants
  • March 31, 2018: Funds become available

One program, three pools
FACCTS applications from researchers affiliated with the University of Chicago constitute one pool of applicants. Proposals from this pool will be competing for a total of $150,000 is seed funding.

Applications submitted by researchers from Argonne and Fermilab will constitute (respectively) the second and third pools. These applications will be evaluated by the FACCTS committee against applications in their respective pools, and ratings and recommendations will be forwarded to the offices of the directors of the appropriate national  laboratory, which will be responsible for final award decisions. Successful national laboratory FACCTS proposals will be funded internally at different levels: $20,000/year for up to two years for the Argonne FACCTS recipient, and up to a total of $15,000 for the Fermilab FACCTS recipient.

Funding Parameters
Funding parameters for ANL and Fermilab researchers are described in the previous section. In the UChicago pool, most one-year awards are in amounts between $5,000 and $15,000. Most two-year awards are in the $10,000 to $25,000 range. While these funding levels are relatively modest when compared to those offered by most state and federal agencies, FACCTS funds are significantly more flexible, and may be used for nearly any purpose that the University’s (or national laborary’s) accounting system allows. We discourage the use of FACCTS funds to support travel to France by senior Chicago faculty members. However, bringing researchers from France to Chicago, and supporting travel by students, and junior faculty members/researchers in either direction is considered a particularly appropriate use of FACCTS funding.