[Federal Register: February 28, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 40)]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
DEPARTMENT OF STATE
[Public Notice 3927]
Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Request for
GrantProposals: Balkan Educational Partnerships Program
SUMMARY: The Office of Global Educational Programs of the Bureau of
Educational and Cultural Affairs announces an open competition for the
Balkan Educational Partnerships Program. Public and private non-profit
organizations and educational institutions meeting the provisions
described in Internal Revenue Code 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3) may submit
proposals to cooperate with the Bureau in the administration of a
three-year program to support the development of instruction in civic
education, public administration, business administration, and the
social, economic, and political sciences at eligible Balkan university
faculties or departments and educational institutions. The means for
achieving these objectives may include the exchange of teachers,
administrators, and advanced students from the Balkan region with
appropriate U.S. counterpart colleges and universities.
The Balkan Educational Partnerships Program will fund three-year
projects to permit U.S. institutions to work with counterpart
university departments and educational institutions in Balkan countries
and locations as specified in the RFGP. Applicants may either identify
a U.S. college or university with which each Balkan educational partner
would cooperate, or propose other models for exchange that will lead to
the achievement of program objectives through increased cooperation by
the Balkan partner institutions, their teachers and students with U.S.
scholars, educators, and other professional experts. Pending
availability of funds, approximately $2,010,000 is expected to be
available in support of the Balkan Educational Partnerships Program in
Program objectives are to assist participating Balkan institutions
and individuals to: (1) Develop courses and curricula in eligible
fields; (2) Improve teaching methods; (3) Develop educational materials
which support new courses and curricula; (4) Train teachers or other
practitioners in the effective use of these materials; and (5) Foster
enduring relationships with U.S. academic institutions and educators.
The program should equip participating Balkan institutions and
educators to assist with the transitions to more market-oriented
economies, to democratic political life, to strengthened civil
societies, and to responsible administrative practices in the public
sector. At the conclusion of the program, teachers at the participating
Balkan institutions should be capable of teaching the newly introduced
or revised courses and should be able to participate more fully in
international dialogue with U.S. and other educators. Students
graduating from the participating Balkan institutions should be better
prepared to assume responsibilities in public service, education, and
the private sector, and to exercise the duties of citizens in a
Pending availability of funds, grants should begin on or about
September 1, 2002.
Applicants should propose a plan that includes all of the projects
listed below. If a specific partner is not identified, the applicant
may identify any appropriate partner from the country or entity
Albania: Political science at Tirana University. Funding for this
project should not exceed $225,000.
Kosovo: Civic education. This project should be designed to support
curriculum development at the primary or secondary level rather than at
the university level and may include participants at the university
level in Kosovo as well as the elementary and secondary levels.
Educational administrators are also eligible to participate. Funding
for this project should not exceed $185,000.
Kosovo: Law, education, or the social sciences. This project may
include one or more faculties or departments of the University of
Pristina. Funding for this project should not exceed $670,000.
Montenegro: Public administration and business administration. This
project may include one or more faculties or departments. Funding for
this project should not exceed $550,000.
Serbia (except Kosovo): Economics/business at the University of
Novi Sad. Funding for this project should not exceed$180,000.
Serbia (except Kosovo): Law, business, public administration,
journalism, education or the social sciences. This project may include
one or more faculties or departments at one or more Serbian
universities. Funding for this project(s) should not exceed $200,000.
The Bureau anticipates that funding may become available for
additional sites in the future. Applicants are encouraged to contact
the program office to discuss options and priorities for the various
locations listed above.
All participants traveling to the Balkans funded under the grant
should represent U.S. educational institutions and must be U.S.
citizens. Foreign participants must be both qualified to receive U.S.
J-1 visas and willing to travel to the U.S. under the provisions of a
J-1 visa during the exchange visits funded by this Program.
Programs must comply with J-1 visa regulations. Please refer to
Solicitation Package for further information.
The Bureau anticipates awarding one grant not to exceed $2,010,000.
Applicants may submit a budget not to exceed this amount. Organizations
with less than four years experience in conducting international
exchanges are limited to $60,000, and are not encouraged to apply. The
Bureau encourages applicants to provide
maximum levels of cost-sharing and funding from private sources in
support of its programs.
Applicants must submit a comprehensive budget for the entire
program. There must be a summary budget as well as breakdowns
reflecting both administrative and program budgets. Applicants should
provide separate sub-budgets for each sub-project with each foreign
partner institution. Please refer to the Solicitation Package for
complete budget guidelines and formatting instructions.
Announcement Title and Number: All correspondence with the Bureau
concerning this RFGP should reference the above title and number ECA/A/
For Further Information Contact: To request a solicitation package,
contact the Humphrey Fellowships and Institutional Linkages Branch;
Office of Global Educational Programs; Bureau of Educational and
Cultural Affairs; ECA/A/S/U, Room 349; U.S. Department of State; SA-44,
301 Fourth Street, SW., Washington, DC 20547; phone: (202) 619-5289,
fax: (202) 401-1433. The Solicitation Package includes more detailed
award criteria, all application forms, and guidelines for preparing
proposals, including specific criteria for preparation of the proposal
budget. Applicants desiring more information may contact Program
Officer Jonathan Cebra at 202-205-8379 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please read the complete Federal Register announcement before
sending inquiries or submitting proposals. Once the RFGP deadline has
passed, Bureau staff may not discuss this competition with applicants
until the proposal review process has been completed.
To Download a Solicitation Package Via Internet
The entire Solicitation Package may be downloaded from the Bureau's
Web site at http://exchanges.state.gov/education/RFGPs. Please read all
information before downloading.
Deadline for Proposals
All proposal copies must be received at the Bureau of Educational
and Cultural Affairs by 5 p.m. Washington, DC time on Friday, April 26,
2002. Faxed documents will not be accepted at any time. Documents
postmarked the due date but received on a later date will not be
accepted. Each applicant must ensure that the proposals are received by
the above deadline.
Applicants must follow all instructions in the SolicitationPackage.
The original and ten copies of the application should be sent to: U.S.
Department of State, SA-44, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs,
Ref.: ECA/A/S/U-02-13, Program Management, ECA/EX/PM, Room 534, 301 4th
Street, SW., Washington, DC 20547.
No later than one week after the competition deadline, applicants
must also submit the Proposal Title Sheet, Executive Summary, and
Proposal Narrative sections of the proposal as e-mail attachments in
Microsoft Word (preferred), WordPerfect, or as ASCII text files to the
following e-mail address: email@example.com. In the e-mail
message subject line, include the following: ECA/A/S/U-02-13. To reduce
the time needed to obtain advisory comments from the Public Affairs
Sections of U.S. Embassies overseas, the Bureau will transmit these
files electronically to these offices.
Diversity, Freedom and Democracy Guidelines
Pursuant to the Bureau's authorizing legislation, programs must
maintain a non-political character and should be balanced and
representative of the diversity of American political, social, and
cultural life. ``Diversity'' should be interpreted in the broadest
sense and encompass differences including, but not limited to
ethnicity, race, gender, religion, geographic location, socio-economic
status, and physical challenges. Applicants are strongly encouraged to
adhere to the advancement of this principle both in program
administration and in program content. Please refer to the review
criteria under the ``Support for Diversity'' section for specific
suggestions on incorporating diversity into the total proposal. Public
Law 104-319 provides that ``in carrying out programs of educational and
cultural exchange in countries whose people do not fully enjoy freedom
and democracy,'' the Bureau ``shall take appropriate steps to provide
opportunities for participation in such programs to human rights and
democracy leaders of such countries.''Public Law 106--113 requires that
the governments of the countries described above do not have
inappropriate influence in the selection process. Proposals should
reflect advancement of these goals in their program contents, to the
full extent deemed feasible.
The Bureau will acknowledge receipt of all proposals and will
review them for technical eligibility. Proposals will be deemed
ineligible if they do not fully adhere to the guidelines stated herein
and in the Solicitation Package.All eligible proposals will be reviewed
by the program office, as well as by the appropriate Public Diplomacy
sections overseas. Eligible proposals will be subject to compliance
with Federal and Bureau regulations and guidelines and forwarded to
Bureau grant panels for advisory review. Proposals may also be reviewed
by the Office of the Legal Adviser or by other Department elements.
Final funding decisions are at the discretion of the Department of
State's Assistant Secretary for Educational and CulturalAffairs. Final
technical authority for grants resides with the Bureau's Grants
Technically eligible applications will be competitively reviewed
according to the criteria stated below. These criteria are not rank
ordered and all carry equal weight in the proposal evaluation:
(1) Broad and Enduring Significance of InstitutionalObjectives:
Program objectives should have significant and ongoing results for the
participating institutions and for their surrounding societies or
communities by providing a deepened understanding of critical issues in
one or more of the eligible fields. Program objectives should relate
clearly to institutional and societal needs, including the transition
of the Balkan countries to democratic systems based on market
(2) Creativity and Feasibility of Strategy to AchieveObjectives:
Strategies to achieve program objectives should be feasible and
realistic within the budget and timeframe. These strategies should
utilize and reinforce exchange activities creatively to ensure an
efficient use of program resources.
(3) Multiplier effect/impact: Proposed programs should strengthen
long-term mutual understanding, including maximum sharing of
information and establishment of long-term institutional and individual
(4) Support of Diversity: Proposals should demonstrate substantive
support of the Bureau's policy on diversity by explaining how issues of
diversity are included in objectives for all institutional partners.
Issues resulting from differences of race, ethnicity, gender, religion,
geography, socio-economic status, or physical challenge should be
addressed during program implementation. In addition, program
participants and administrators should reflect the diversity within the
societies which they represent (see the section of this document on
``Diversity,Freedom, and Democracy Guidelines''). Proposals should also
discuss how the various
institutional partners approach diversity issues in their respective
communities or societies.
(5) Institution's Capacity and Record/Ability: Proposed personnel
and institutional resources should be adequate and appropriate to
achieve the program or project's goals.Proposals should demonstrate an
institutional record of successful exchange programs, including
responsible fiscal management and full compliance with all reporting
requirements for past Bureau grants as determined by BureauGrant Staff.
The Bureau will consider the past performance of prior recipients and
the demonstrated potential of new applicants.
(6) Evaluation: Proposals should outline a methodology for
determining the degree to which the project meets its objectives, both
while it is underway and at its conclusion.The final program evaluation
should include an external component and should provide observations
about the program's influence within the participating institutions as
well as their surrounding communities or societies.
(7) Cost-effectiveness: Administrative and program costs should be
reasonable and appropriate with cost-sharing provided by all
participating institutions within the context of their respective
capacities. Cost-sharing is viewed as a reflection of institutional
commitment to the program.
Overall grant making authority for this program is contained in the
Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961,Public Law 87-256,
as amended, also known as the Fulbright-Hays Act. The purpose of the
Act is ``to enable the Government of the United States to increase
mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the
people of other countries * * *; to strengthen the ties which unite us
with other nations by demonstrating the educational and cultural
interests, developments, and achievements of the people of the United
States and other nations * * * and thus to assist in the development of
friendly, sympathetic and peaceful relations between the United States
and the other countries of the world.'' The funding authority for the
program above is provided through legislation. The funding authority
for the program cited above is provided through the Support for East
EuropeanDemocracy (SEED) Act of 1989.
The terms and conditions published in this RFGP are binding and may
not be modified by any Bureau representative. Explanatory information
provided by the Bureau that contradicts published language will not be
binding. Issuance of the RFGP does not constitute an award commitment
on the part of the Government. The Bureau reserves the right to reduce,
revise, or increase proposal budgets in accordance with the needs of
the program and the availability of funds. Awards made will be subject
to periodic reporting and evaluation requirements.
Final awards cannot be made until funds have been appropriated by
Congress, allocated and committed through internal Bureau procedures.
Dated: February 20, 2002.
Patricia S. Harrison,
Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs, U.S.
Department of State.
[FR Doc. 02-4853 Filed 2-27-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4710-05-P
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