This article is published in the April 2021 issue.

CRA/CCC Announces CIFellows 2021 Program


The Computing Research Association (CRA) and Computing Community Consortium (CCC) are pleased to announce a new Computing Innovation Fellows (CIFellows) cohort for 2021. This program recognizes the continued disruption to hiring in academic institutions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As before, this program aims to provide a career-enhancing bridge experience for recent and soon-to-be PhD graduates in computing to support maintaining the computing research pipeline.

The Computing Innovation Fellows Program is open to researchers whose work falls under the umbrella of the National Science Foundation (NSF) Computing and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Directorate. This includes PhD graduates who are planning a career in academia either as a research scientist or in a faculty position. This effort takes inspiration from CRA/CCC’s NSF-funded Computing Innovation Fellows Programs with cohorts starting 2009, 2010, and 2011, CRA’s Best Practices Memo on Computer Science Postdocs and the Computing Innovation Fellows 2020 Project.

Similar to last year, the CIFellows 2021 awardees will receive a two year postdoctoral opportunity in computing, with cohort activities to support career development and community building. Realizing there are still many unknowns with the pandemic and that situations are different across the nation, there will be some flexibility in the program.

Applicants must coordinate with one or more proposed mentors to create a Research Plan, CIFellowship Plan and Mentoring Plan. We encourage community members to use their networks to find potential matches. To help with this process, we have created an Opportunity Board for the CIFellows 2021 application cycle.

Details of the program can be found on our website. We held an informational webinar on Thursday, April 15th for the community. Please see the recording here. Applications need to be registered by May 10 and completed by May 17. Decisions will be made by July 1, 2021 for positions beginning fall, 2021 or winter, 2022. Please continue to check the website ( for continued updates and details.