Frequently Asked Questions

The following Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) were developed to help applicants and research administrators with commonly asked questions for the Reaching a New Energy Sciences Workforce (RENEW) funding opportunity announcements (FOAs).

NOTE: There is a lot of information on the Applicant and Awardee Resources page, including general Applicant FAQs, information on the Promoting Inclusive and Equitable Research (PIER) Plans, Institution Designations/Classifications, and more. This information is not repeated here.

How do I assess whether I should apply to Reaching a New Energy Sciences Workforce (RENEW) or Funding for Accelerated, Inclusive Research (FAIR)?

Both initiatives aim to increase the diversity of individuals and institutions participating in Office of Science (SC) research and to build relationships with institutions historically underrepresented in the SC research portfolio. RENEW leverages SC’s national laboratories, user facilities, and other research infrastructures to provide undergraduate and graduate training opportunities for students at academic institutions not currently well represented in the U.S. science and technology ecosystem. FAIR increases research capacity and supports faculty at academic institutions not currently well represented in the U.S. S&T ecosystem by funding core research relevant to the SC mission.

Is my institution eligible for RENEW?

Eligibility varies for each RENEW FOA. Please review the individual FOA for specifics. Institution designations/classifications are posted here with the following specified: Minority-Serving Institution designation, Carnegie classification, and Emerging Research Institution classification.

What is PAMS?

The DOE Office of Science Portfolio Analysis and Management System (PAMS) is a software system that accepts submissions from outside DOE and helps applicants and DOE program managers organize their application and award portfolios. PAMS is integrated with such that grant applications submitted into are imported into and stored by PAMS. Pre-applications must be submitted directly into PAMS.

How do I register in PAMS?

To register, click “Create New PAMS Account” on the website and follow the instructions for creating an account. You will be prompted to create a username and password and to enter your contact information. Registering to PAMS is a two-step process. Once you create an individual account, you must associate yourself with (“register to”) your institution. Follow the onscreen instructions to do this.

Who do I contact if I’m having problems with submissions?

If you are having problems with submissions of a preapplication, please contact the PAMS helpdesk at 855-818-1846 or If you are having problems with submission of an application, please contact the Sponsored Projects Office at your institution or the helpdesk at 800-518-4726 or

Are there restrictions on which institutions can be included as part of the research application/team?

Teaming requirements vary by FOA. Please ensure that the composition of your proposed team meets the requirements of the FOA under which you will be applying.

Is summer salary an allowable cost?

Salary support, including summer salary, is an allowable cost. All requested costs must conform to your institutional policies and the applicable cost principles.

Is travel support allowed?

Yes. Principal investigators should budget and request support for any travel necessary to carry out the proposed research. Please work with your Office of Sponsored Research to ensure that all requested costs are in conformance with institutional policies and the applicable cost principles.

Can the budget contain funding for graduate students?


Who should be included in the list of collaborators table?

All investigators in the team, including any funded partners, should be included in the collaborators table.

My research sounds like it might fit in multiple programs. Which one should I apply to?

Questions regarding the specific program areas/technical topics can be directed to the technical contacts listed within the FOA. If you are unsure if your research is applicable to a particular program, please reach out to the technical contact that your research most closely aligns with to discuss.

Is the program limited to Principal Investigators (PIs) who are U.S. citizens?

No, but the PI must be employed by an institution that is eligible to submit to the FOA. All personnel working (or proposed to work under an award) must have the legal right to perform such work. Neither proof of citizenship, permanent residency, or other legal status is required.

Does this program require cost sharing?

No. Cost sharing is not required, requested, considered during merit review, or considered during award selection.

Is there a required format for the pre-application?

Yes. It is contained in the FOA. Please follow it precisely.

Does the Principal Investigator submit the pre-application or does the sponsored research office submit it?

Pre-applications may only be submitted by a user at the PI’s institution with the “Submit to DOE” privilege in PAMS. A PI may draft a pre-application but will only be able to submit the pre-application for institutional countersignature. The acknowledgment email will go to the Principal Investigator’s email address.