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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Federal Register: May 2, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 85)]
[Notices]               
[Page 22155-22158]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr02my02-162]                         

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF STATE

[Public Notice 4001]

 
Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Request for Grant 
Proposals: Moscow State University Journalism Support Project

SUMMARY: The Office of Global Educational Programs of the Bureau of 
Educational and Cultural Affairs announces an open competition for the 
Moscow State University Journalism Support Project. Public and private 
non-profit organizations and educational institutions meeting the 
provisions described in Internal Revenue Code section 26 U.S.C. 
501(c)(3) may submit proposals to cooperate with the Bureau in the 
administration of a two-year project to strengthen the training of 
journalists at Moscow State University (MSU). The means for achieving 
this objective may include teaching, research, and exchanges of 
scholars, administrators, and advanced graduate students from the 
participating institutions, as well as the acquisition of educational 
materials and resources.

Program Information

    Overview: Journalists and independent media professionals play a 
critical role in ensuring the free flow of information necessary to the 
maintenance of democratic systems. Institutions of higher education, as 
the training ground for future journalists and media practitioners, can 
play an important role in setting the standards and providing the 
skills necessary for the maintenance of free media. This project is 
designed to assist the Faculty of Journalism at MSU to increase its 
capacity to deliver programs meeting high international standards for 
instruction and research in journalism training. The primary goal of 
this project is to promote the development of a curriculum that will 
meet the evolving needs of journalists in contemporary Russia.
    The Moscow State University Journalism Support Project will provide 
funding for two years to enable a U.S. institution to cooperate with 
the Faculty of Journalism at MSU. The grantee organization will be 
expected to assist the Faculty of Journalism through a comprehensive 
program of exchange and support activities that will foster lasting 
institutional and individual ties. Applicants may either identify one 
U.S. college or university to work directly with the Faculty of 
Journalism or may propose other modes for exchange that will lead to 
the achievement of program objectives through increased cooperation by 
the Faculty of Journalism, its teachers and students with U.S. 
scholars, educators, and other professional experts. Pending 
availability of funds, the project will award approximately $500,000 to 
defray the costs of two-way faculty exchanges, of limited exchanges of 
graduate students, of educational materials, and to support some 
aspects of project administration. There may be the possibility of a 
renewal grant of up to $500,000 for a two-year period pending positive 
program review and the availability of funding.
    Objectives: The purpose of this project is to assist the MSU 
Faculty of Journalism in strengthening its journalism training program. 
Specific objectives include: (1) Updating and introducing new curricula 
and approaches to the teaching of journalism; (2) increasing practical 
skills and experiential learning opportunities in the classroom and in 
the field; (3) supplementing material resources, including books and 
journal subscriptions, funding for translations, and upgrading of 
computer equipment and/or electronic resource materials; (4) providing 
research and collaborative research opportunities; (5) supporting 
distance learning and other initiatives providing outreach to 
journalism educators in other regions of Russia; and (6) fostering 
enduring relationships with U.S. academic institutions.
    The program should enhance the Faculty of Journalism's ability to 
provide journalists with the skills necessary for practicing journalism 
in democratic society. Activities should lead to the achievement of 
project objectives in addressing topics such as: investigative 
reporting; ethics in journalism; policy analysis, media management; on-
line journalism; and new media technologies. Applicants should provide 
assistance in developing incentives to encourage practicing 
professional journalists to return to the MSU classroom and share their 
expertise. Applicants are also encouraged to assist the Faculty of 
Journalism in securing additional foundation grants and corporate 
sponsorships to address on-going equipment needs and to undertake 
activities beyond the scope of this project.
    Background: The MSU Faculty of Journalism currently has 125 
professors,

[[Page 22156]]

associate professors, lecturers, and instructors in addition to 60 
researchers. Approximately 3,200 full-time and correspondence students 
are enrolled in a variety of degree programs. The Faculty consists of 
twelve departments: Periodical Press; Radio and Television; Mass Media 
Techniques; Sociology of the Media; Economical Journalism and 
Advertising; Editing, Publishing, and Computer Science; History of 
Russian Journalism and Literature; History of Mass Media; History of 
Foreign Journalism and Literature; Literary Criticism and Publicity; 
Stylistics of the Russian Language; and the UNESCO Department of 
Journalism and Communications. In addition, the Faculty of Journalism 
has a variety of labs, including: computer classrooms, a television 
studio, a radio studio, a photo lab and an experimental publishing 
house. Applicants are encouraged to contact the Faculty of Journalism 
to learn more about its programs and to consult about program 
priorities.
    The institution receiving a grant award will be expected to submit 
periodic reports of the results of project activities in relation to 
project objectives. Proposals should outline and budget for a 
methodology for project evaluation. The evaluation plan should include 
an assessment of the current institutional needs at the time of program 
inception with specific reference to project objectives; formative 
evaluation to allow for mid-course revisions in the implementation 
strategy; and, at the conclusion of the project, summative evaluation 
of the degree to which the project's objectives have been achieved 
together with observations about the projects' continuing potential to 
influence the participating institutions and their surrounding 
communities or societies. The final evaluation should also include 
recommendations about how to build upon project achievements. 
Evaluative observations by external consultants with appropriate 
subject and regional expertise are especially encouraged.
    Participant Eligibility: This project is designed to support 
exchanges of faculty, administrators, staff, and advanced graduate 
students from the Faculty of Journalism at MSU. In addition, 
participants may include U.S. faculty, administrators and staff, and 
other qualified professionals with relevant expertise in journalism. 
All participants traveling to Russia funded under the grant 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. 
Foreign participants may not be U.S. citizens.
    Logistics: The grantee organization will be responsible for most 
arrangements associated with this program. These include providing 
international and domestic travel arrangements for all participants, 
making lodging and local transportation arrangements for visitors, 
orienting and debriefing participants, and preparing any other 
necessary support material.
    Programs must comply with J-1 visa regulations. Please refer to the 
Project Objectives Goals and Implementation (POGI) and Proposal 
Submission Instruction (PSI) documents for this project for further 
information.
    Budget Guidelines: The Bureau anticipates awarding one grant of 
approximately $500,000 to support program and administrative costs 
required to implement this project. Organizations with less than four 
years of experience in conducting international exchange programs 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 
project. There must be a summary budget as well as breakdowns 
reflecting both administrative and program budgets. Applicants may 
provide separate sub-budgets for each program component, phase, 
location, or activity to provide clarification.
    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/
S/U-03-08.
    For Further Information: 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 4th 
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 Michelle Johnson at (202)205-8434 or johnsonmi@pd.state.gov.
    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.
    Contact Information for the Faculty of Journalism at MSU: 
Applicants are strongly encouraged to consult with the Faculty of 
Journalism at MSU. More detailed information can be obtained from their 
web site at: http://www.journ.msu.ru. The designated contact person for 
this project is Dr. Elena Vartanova who may be reached by e-mail at: 
eva@journ.msu.ru.
    To Download a Solicitation Package via Internet: The entire 
Solicitation Package, consisting of the RFGP, POGI, and PSI documents 
may be downloaded from the Bureau's website 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, September 20, 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.
    Approximate Program Dates: Pending availability of funds, grants 
should begin on or about January 1, 2003.
    Applicants must follow all instructions in the Solicitation 
Package. 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-03-08, 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: partnerships@pd.state.gov In the e-mail 
subject line, include the following: ECA/A/S/U-03-08. The Bureau will 
transmit these files electronically to the Public Affairs section at 
the U.S. Embassy for its review, with the goal of reducing the time it 
takes to get embassy comments for the Bureau's grants review process.

[[Page 22157]]

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.

Review Process

    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 Public Diplomacy 
section 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 Cultural Affairs. Final 
technical authority for grants resides with the Bureau's Grants 
Officer.

Review Criteria

    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. Program planning and ability to achieve program objectives: 
Proposals should exhibit originality, substance, precision, and 
resourcefulness. Proposals should have reasonable and feasible project 
objectives that are clearly relevant to the Faculty of Journalism. A 
detailed agenda and relevant work plan should demonstrate substantive 
undertakings and logistical capacity. Agenda and plan should adhere to 
the program overview and guidelines described above and should clearly 
demonstrate how the partnership will meet the project's objectives.
    2. Support of Diversity: Proposals should demonstrate substantive 
support of the Bureau's policy on diversity by explaining how issues of 
diversity are included in project 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 project implementation. In addition, project 
participants and administrators should reflect the diversity within the 
societies which they represent (see the section of this document of 
``Diversity, Freedom, and Democracy Guidelines''). Proposals should 
also discuss how the various institutional partners approach diversity 
issues in their respective communities or societies.
    3. Institutional Capacity and Commitment: Proposals should 
demonstrate institutional resources adequate and appropriate to achieve 
program goals. Relevant factors include: the match between partner 
departments and schools; and the availability of sufficient numbers of 
faculty and/or administrators willing and able to participate. 
Proposals should provide evidence of strong institutional commitment by 
all participating institutions and an indication of collaborative 
program planning. Proposals should demonstrate promise of 
sustainability and long-term impact which will be reflected in a plan 
for continued, non-U.S. government support and follow-on activities.
    4. Institution's Record/Ability: 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 Bureau Grant 
Staff. The Bureau will consider the past performance of prior 
recipients and the demonstrated potential of new applicants.
    5. Project Evaluation: Proposals should outline a methodology for 
determining the degree to which a project meets its objectives, both 
while the project is underway and at its conclusion. The final project 
evaluation should include an external component and should provide 
observations about the project's influence within the participating 
institutions as well as their surrounding communities or societies.
    6. Cost-effectiveness and cost sharing: 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 project.

Authority

    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 cited above is provided through the Freedom for Russia and 
Emerging Eurasian Democracies and Open Markets Support Act of 1992 
(FREEDOM Support Act).

Notice

    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.

Notification

    Final awards cannot be made until funds have been appropriated by 
Congress, allocated and committed through internal Bureau procedures.


[[Page 22158]]


    Dated: April 25, 2002.
Rick A. Ruth,
Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Educational and 
Cultural Affairs, Department of State.
[FR Doc. 02-10903 Filed 5-1-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4710-05-P




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