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THE NORTH PACIFIC RESEARCH BOARD (NPRB) anticipates issuing a solicitation for pre-proposals in October 2023 for an Integrated Ecosystem Research Program (IERP) that will support integrated research in the Bering and Chukchi Seas, centered in the Northern Bering Sea. Topics of interest include how environmental conditions and processes in the Northern Bering Sea influence species of commercial, ecological and subsistence importance, and implications for state and federal fisheries management and communities that depend on these resources.

Following an initial review of the pre-proposals, a subset will be invited to submit full proposals in October 2024. Awards up to $10,000 will be available to support the development of full proposals with Indigenous Co-Investigators, or Indigenous-led proposals can apply the funds to seek Western science Co-Investigators.

Final funding decisions will be announced in October 2025 and the research program will extend through September 2031. NPRB anticipates offering $6.5 million and partners may offer additional funding to support research of mutual interest.


Pre-proposals will be invited in two research categories:

1. Oceanography and lower trophic level productivity:
Influence of sea ice dynamics, ocean properties, and advection on the phenology, magnitude, and location of primary and secondary production that influence species of commercial, ecological and subsistence importance.

2. Species distribution and interactions:
Physical, biological, and ecological drivers and important thresholds relevant to the distribution, phenology, and life history of species of commercial, ecological and subsistence importance, and implications for state and federal fisheries management and communities that depend on these resources.


Innovative approaches to using Indigenous Knowledge and Western science in concert are encouraged in both research categories. Individual pre-proposals may request up to $2.5 million. The budget should include funding needed for logistics support (e.g., vessel contract) and the logistics support should be presented separately from the rest of the budget (separate templates will be provided). Pre-proposals should be viable as independent projects but may include an explanation of the intent to integrate with other pre-proposals, if funded.

Questions should be directed to Danielle Dickson, Senior Program Manager of the Integrated Ecosystem Research Program (Danielle.Dickson@nprb.org) or Matthew Baker, NPRB Science Director (Matthew.Baker@nprb.org).

To stay informed about the Northern Bering Sea IERP, and to find the RFP when it is released, please visit: https://nprb.org/northern-bering-sea-ierp. 

Photo Credit: Bonnie Reynolds