At a recent meeting in Washington, D.C., the National Science Foundation (NSF) presented on the Research Security Analytics Toolkit (RSAT). The RSAT is a powerful tool that can be used to track the international engagement of NSF-funded researchers, identify potential conflicts of commitment, detect undisclosed foreign funding, and monitor research spending trends.
RSAT integrates and processes over 100 million publications, 50 million NSF proposals and reports, and 5 million granted patents. It uses advanced text analytics techniques to match NSF proposals to publications, identify undisclosed dual affiliations, and track research topics with extensive overseas collaborations. Additionally, the NSF can notify other agencies of discrepancies they find, so we need to ensure all our disclosures, regardless of the awarding agencies, are complete and accurate.
Here are some specific examples of how RSAT can be used:
- RSAT can be used to track the international engagement of NSF-funded researchers. This can help to identify researchers who may be at risk of being influenced by foreign governments or organizations.
- RSAT can be used to identify potential conflicts of commitment. This can help to ensure that researchers are not overcommitted and their work is not being compromised.
- RSAT can be used to detect undisclosed foreign funding. This can help to protect the integrity of NSF-funded research and prevent the misuse of taxpayer dollars.
- RSAT can be used to monitor research spending trends. This can help to identify areas where research funding is being underutilized or where there are potential risks to the research enterprise.
As a reminder, please ensure you are accurately and consistently disclosing any international engagements in your proposals, sponsor technical reports, publications, and patenting documentation. If you identify any potential disparities in your reporting, please communicate with your program officers, and, if needed, your supervisors.