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Newton's List: Creating Opportunities for International Scientific Collaboration

Newton's List is a gateway for international scientific collaboration.
Newton's List is a gateway for international scientific collaboration.

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Newton's List: Creating Opportunities for International Scientific Collaboration

In the face of the challenges we encounter here on Earth, scientists and innovators seem to be increasingly recognizing that solutions to global struggles will only come from unprejudiced and unrestricted collaboration.

Between 1997 and 2012, internationally coauthored articles grew from 16% to 25% of all articles published in peer reviewed journals. In the U.S. alone, the percentage of articles with coauthors from institutions in other countries increased from 19% in 1997 to 35% in 2012.  Studies have also shown that articles stemming from teams of international collaborators are more likely to be highly cited and published in high impact journals, indicative of the strong quality of research.

With new trends come new needs. As the rate of global collaboration in research continues to grow, so does the need for a central, globally accessible network where scientists and researchers can search for opportunities to fund their internationally collaborative projects. In 2013, CRDF Global partnered with the National Science Foundation to meet this need with a connection portal known as Newton’s List.

“Newton’s List was an inspiration based on experience talking with both the U.S. research community and international partners,” said DeAndra Beck, Program Director at the National Science Foundation. “The concept was a user-based portal where anyone can upload funding opportunities. We were hoping to have a robust subscription from anyone who wanted to post a funding opportunity for international research and education.”

Nonprofits, government agencies, private companies, and universities can post opportunities for research funding, travel grants, fellowships, scholarships, and faculty research appointments. All opportunities must involve an aspect of international collaboration and represent natural sciences, engineering and technology, or social sciences.

“When people think, ‘How can I market a job opportunity or where should I go to look for housing,’ they usually think of Craigslist,” said Steve Bergen, CRDF Global Program Manager. I would like to see that same automatic response when thinking of how to market an international research opportunity or find funding for a great idea.”

In 2013, over 37,000 unique users from across the U.S., Europe, Asia and the Middle East visited Newton’s List to post or search for funding opportunities. “The ideas is that by making this free resource easily accessible, it will allow scientists and researchers to concentrate on what’s important: Absorbing new information, testing ideas, and inventing solutions for a better tomorrow.”