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NPS Cooperative Ecosystems Studies Units (CESU) Master Cooperative Agreements




December 22, 2022



December 31, 2027



Award Floor:


Match Required?





Entity Types:


All applicants must be a partner of the CESU network prior to being considered for an award of a master cooperative agreement under this announcement. Information on how to join the CESU network can be found at:




Source Type:


The National Park Service (NPS) are seeking applications for Master Cooperative Agreements from CESU network participants in the following CESU network regions: North and West Alaska Californian Chesapeake Watershed Colorado Plateau Desert Southwest Great Basin Great Lakes Northern Forest Great Plains Great Rivers Gulf Coast Hawaii/Pacific Islands North Atlantic Coast Pacific Northwest Piedmont-South Atlantic Coast Rocky Mountains South Florida Caribbean Southern Appalachian Cooperative agreements to CESU network participants residing in CESU network regions other than those listed above will be pursued separate from this notice of funding opportunity; however, those CESU network participants may still apply for a Master Cooperative Agreement under this announcement. Application instructions are found in Section D. Application and Submission Information. Applications will be reviewed and evaluated as they are received and may be submitted at any time up until the closing date of this announcement. The Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Units network is a national consortium of Federal agencies, tribes, academic institutions, state and local governments, nongovernmental conservation organizations, and other partners working together to support informed public trust resource stewardship. The CESU network includes 390 non-Federal partners and 15 Federal Agencies in seventeen (17) CESUs representing biogeographic regions encompassing all 50 states and U.S. territories. The CESU network is well positioned as a platform to support research, technical assistance, education and capacity building that is responsive to long-standing and contemporary science and resource management priorities. The seventeen (17) CESUs bring together scientists, resource managers, students, and other conservation professionals, drawing upon expertise from across the biological, physical, social, cultural, and engineering disciplines (from Anthropology to Zoology) to conduct collaborative and interdisciplinary applied projects that address natural and cultural heritage resource issues at multiple scales and in an ecosystem context. Each CESU is structured as a working collaborative with participation from numerous Federal and non-Federal institutional partners. CESUs are based at host universities and focused on a particular biogeographic region of the country. The NPS is required under Research Mandate 54 USC 100702 to ensure the management of NPS units are enhanced by the availability and utilization of a broad program of the highest quality science and information. To help answer this mandate, the NPS works cooperatively with approved CESU cooperators. Annually the NPS obligates between $30M and $40M in CESU cooperative agreements agency wide. Individual projects are up to five (5) years in duration with an average of approximately $60,000 per agreement. The NPS plans to create Master Cooperative Agreements with CESU partners to carry out the CFDA program 15.945, Cooperative Research and Training Programs Resources of the National Park System. The NPS is announcing the intent to solicit proposals from organizations within the CESU network. The objectives of the CESU program are: a. Provide usable knowledge to support informed decision making. b. Ensure the independence and objectivity of research. c. Create and maintain effective partnerships among the Federal agencies and universities to share resources and expertise. d. Take full advantage of university resources while benefiting faculty and students. e. Encourage professional development of current and future Federal scientists, resource managers, and environmental leaders. f. Manage Federal resources effectively.

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