|National Science Foundation|
Motto: Where Discoveries Begin
|Formed||10 May 1950|
|Annual Budget||$5. Events 1291 - Scottish Nobles recognize the authority of Edward I of England. Year 1950 ( MCML) was a Common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. 91 billion for 2007|
|Agency Executive||Arden L. Bement Jr., Director|
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is a United States government agency that supports fundamental research and education in all the non-medical fields of science and engineering. Dr Arden L Bement Jr (born May 22, 1932 in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania) is an American Engineer and Scientist, and is The United States of America —commonly referred to as the A government agency is a permanent or semi-permanent organization in the Machinery of government that is responsible for the oversight and administration of specific functions Research is defined as Human activity based on Intellectual application in the investigation of Matter. Education encompasses both the Teaching and Learning of Knowledge, proper conduct, and technical competency Science (from the Latin scientia, meaning " Knowledge " or "knowing" is the effort to discover, and increase human understanding Engineering is the Discipline and Profession of applying technical and scientific Knowledge and Its medical counterpart is the National Institutes of Health. "NIH" redirects here For other meanings of NIH see NIH (disambiguation. With an annual budget of about $6. 02 billion (fiscal year 2008), NSF funds approximately 20 percent of all federally supported basic research conducted by the United States' colleges and universities. Basic Research is an Herbal supplement and cosmetics manufacturer based in Salt Lake City, Utah that distributes products through a large number of This is a list of American institutions of Higher education in the United States and abroad sorted by region In some fields, such as mathematics, computer science, economics and the social sciences, NSF is the major source of federal backing. Mathematics is the body of Knowledge and Academic discipline that studies such concepts as Quantity, Structure, Space and Computer science (or computing science) is the study and the Science of the theoretical foundations of Information and Computation and their Economics is the social science that studies the production distribution, and consumption of goods and services. The social sciences comprise academic disciplines concerned with the study of the social life of human groups and individuals including Anthropology, Communication studies
The NSF's director, its deputy director, and the 24 members of the National Science Board (NSB) are appointed by the President of the United States, and confirmed by the United States Senate. The President of the United States is the Head of state and Head of government of the United States and is the highest political official in United States by The United States Senate is the Upper house of the bicameral United States Congress, the Lower house being the House of Representatives The director and deputy director are responsible for administration, planning, budgeting and day-to-day operations of the foundation, while the NSB meets six times a year to establish its overall policies. The current NSF director is Dr. Arden L. Bement, Jr., and the current deputy director is Dr. Kathie L. Olsen. Dr Arden L Bement Jr (born May 22, 1932 in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania) is an American Engineer and Scientist, and is Kathie L Olsen is an American Neuroscientist who is noted for her work in scientific policy
Grants and the merit review process
Although many other federal research agencies operate their own laboratories—notable examples being the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH)—NSF does not. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration ( NASA, ˈnæsə is an agency of the United States government, responsible for the nation's public space program "NIH" redirects here For other meanings of NIH see NIH (disambiguation. Instead, it seeks to fulfill its mission chiefly by issuing competitive, limited-term grants in response to specific proposals from the research community. (NSF also makes some contracts. ) Some proposals are solicited, and some are not; NSF funds both kinds.
NSF receives about 40,000 such proposals each year, and funds about 10,000 of them. Those funded are typically the projects that are ranked highest in a merit review process. These reviews are carried out by panels of independent scientists, engineers and educators who are experts in the relevant fields of study, and who are selected by NSF with particular attention to avoiding conflicts of interest. (For example, the reviewers cannot work at NSF itself, nor for the institution that employs the proposing researchers. ) All proposal evaluations are confidential.
Most NSF grants go to individuals or small groups of investigators who carry out research at their home campuses. Other grants provide funding for mid-scale research centers, instruments and facilities that serve researchers from many institutions. Still others fund national-scale facilities that are shared by the research community as a whole. Examples of national facilities include NSF’s national observatories, with their giant optical and radio telescopes; its Antarctic research sites; its high-end computer facilities and ultra-high-speed network connections; the ships and submersibles used for ocean research; and its gravitational wave observatories.
In addition to researchers and research facilities, NSF grants also support science, engineering and mathematics education from pre-K through graduate school. Undergraduates can receive funding through REU summer programs. Research Experiences for Undergraduates (or REUs are competitive summer research programs in the United States for undergraduates studying science Engineering, or  Graduate students are supported through IGERT (Integrative Graduate Education Research Traineeships) and AGEP (Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate) programs and through the Graduate Research Fellowships, NSF-GRF. The National Science Foundation- Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF-GRFP is a grant provided by the National Science Foundation to fund graduate research in certain areas An early career-development program (CAREER) supports teacher-scholars that most effectively integrate research and education within the mission of their organization, as a foundation for a lifetime of integrated contributions. 
Scope and organization
National Science Foundation Building
NSF’s workforce numbers about 1700, nearly all working at its Arlington, Virginia headquarters. That includes about 1200 career employees, 150 scientists from research institutions on temporary duty, 200 contract workers, and the staff of the National Science Board office and the Office of the Inspector General, which examines the foundation's work and reports to the NSB and Congress.
NSF organizes its research and education support through seven directorates, each encompassing several disciplines:
- Biological Sciences (molecular, cellular, and organismal biology, environmental science)
- Computer and Information Science and Engineering (fundamental computer science, computer and networking systems, and artificial intelligence)
- Engineering (bioengineering, environmental systems, civil and mechanical systems, chemical and transport systems, electrical and communications systems, and design and manufacturing)
- Geosciences (geological, atmospheric and ocean sciences)
- Mathematical and Physical Sciences (mathematics, astronomy, physics, chemistry and materials science)
- Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences (neuroscience, psychology, sociology, anthropology, linguistics and economics)
- Education and Human Resources (science, technology, engineering and mathematics education at every level, pre-K to grey)
Other research offices
NSF also supports research through several offices within the Office of the Director:
In addition to the research it funds in specific disciplines, NSF has launched a number of crosscutting projects that coordinate the efforts of experts in many disciplines. Foundations of modern biology There are five unifying principles Environmental science is the study of interactions among physical chemical and biological components of the environment. Computer science (or computing science) is the study and the Science of the theoretical foundations of Information and Computation and their Mathematics is the body of Knowledge and Academic discipline that studies such concepts as Quantity, Structure, Space and Astronomy (from the Greek words astron (ἄστρον "star" and nomos (νόμος "law" is the scientific study Physics (Greek Physis - φύσις in everyday terms is the Science of Matter and its motion. Chemistry (from Egyptian kēme (chem meaning "earth") is the Science concerned with the composition structure and properties Materials Science or Materials Engineering is an interdisciplinary field involving the properties of matter and its applications to various areas of Science and Neuroscience is a field devoted to the scientific study of the nervous system Psychology (from Greek grc ψῡχή psȳkhē, "breath life soul" and grc -λογία -logia) is an Academic and The social sciences comprise academic disciplines concerned with the study of the social life of human groups and individuals including Anthropology, Communication studies Anthropology (/ˌænθɹəˈpɒlədʒi/ from Greek grc ἄνθρωπος anthrōpos, "human" -λογία -logia) is the study of Linguistics is the scientific study of Language, encompassing a number of sub-fields Economics is the social science that studies the production distribution, and consumption of goods and services. Science education is the field concerned with sharing Science Content and Process with individuals not traditionally considered part of the scientific community Technology education is a study of technology which provides an opportunity for students to learn about the processes and knowledge related to technology Engineering education is the activity of teaching Engineering and Technology, at school college and university levels Mathematics education is a term that refers both to the practice of Teaching and Learning Mathematics, as well as to a field of scholarly Research Examples include initiatives in:
In many cases, these projects involve collaborations with other U. S. federal agencies.
History and mission
The NSF was established by the National Science Foundation Act of 1950. Its stated mission:
- To promote the progress of science; to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare; and to secure the national defense.
Some historians of science have argued that the result was an unsatisfactory compromise between too many clashing visions of the purpose and scope of the federal government.  NSF was certainly not the primary government agency for the funding of basic science, as its supporters had originally envisioned in the aftermath of World War II. World War II, or the Second World War, (often abbreviated WWII) was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including By 1950, support for major areas of research had already become dominated by specialized agencies such as the National Institutes of Health (medical research) and the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (nuclear and particle physics). "NIH" redirects here For other meanings of NIH see NIH (disambiguation. The United States Atomic Energy Commission (AEC was an agency of the United States government established after World War II by Congress to foster and control That pattern would continue after 1957, when U. S. anxiety over the launch of Sputnik led to the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (space science) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (defense-related research). The National Aeronautics and Space Administration ( NASA, ˈnæsə is an agency of the United States government, responsible for the nation's public space program The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA is an agency of the United States Department of Defense responsible for the development of new Technology
Nonetheless, NSF's scope has expanded over the years to include many areas that were not in its initial portfolio, including the social and behavioral sciences, engineering, and science and mathematics education. Today, as described in its 2003–2008 strategic plan, NSF is the only U. S. federal agency with a mandate to support all the non-medical fields of research.
In the process, moreover, the foundation has come to enjoy strong bipartisan support from Congress. Especially after the technology boom of the 1980s, both sides of the aisle have generally embraced the notion that government-funded basic research is essential for the nation's economic health and global competitiveness, as well as for the national defense. That support has manifested itself in an expanding budget—from $1 billion in 1983 to just over $6. 02 billion by FY 2008. (fiscal year 2007).
- Pre-World War II
- Academic research in science and engineering is not considered a federal responsibility; almost all support comes from private contributions and charitable foundations.
- World War II
- There is a growing awareness that America's military capability owes a great deal to the nation's strength in science and engineering. Congress considers several proposals to provide federal support for research in these fields.
- Vannevar Bush, head of the government's wartime Office of Scientific Research and Development, issues a report to President Harry S. Truman, entitled Science—The Endless Frontier. The report lays out a strong case for having the federal government fund scientific research, arguing that the nation would reap rich dividends in the form of better health care, a more vigorous economy, and a stronger national defense. Vannevar Bush ( March 11, 1890 &ndash June 30, 1974; pronounced "VAN-ee-var" ˈvæˌniː The report also proposes creating a new federal agency, the "National Research Foundation," to administer this effort.
- Although there is broad agreement in Washington with the principle of federal support for science, there is far less agreement on exactly how that effort should be organized and managed. Thrashing out a consensus requires five years of negotiation and compromise. 
- On May 10, President Truman signs Public Law 507, creating the National Science Foundation. The act provides for a National Science Board of twenty-four part-time members and a director as chief executive officer, all appointed by the president.
- In early March, Truman nominates Alan T. Waterman, the chief scientist at the Office of Naval Research, to become the first Director of the fledgling agency. Alan Tower Waterman ( June 4, 1892 &ndash 1967 was an American Physicist. The Office of Naval Research ( ONR) headquartered in Arlington Virginia ( Ballston) is the office within the United States Department of the With the Korean War underway, money is tight: the agency's initial budget is just $151,000.
- After moving its administrative offices twice, NSF begins its first full year of operations with an appropriation from Congress of just $3. 5 million, a figure far less the almost $33. 5 million requested. Twenty-eight research grants are awarded.
- On October 5, the Soviet Union orbits Sputnik 1, the first ever man-made satellite. Sputnik 1 ( "Спутник-1", "Satellite-1" ПС-1 ( PS-1, i The successful rocket launch forces a national self-appraisal that questions American education, scientific, technical and industrial strength. For 1959, Congress increases the NSF appropriation to $134 million, nearly $100 million higher than the year before. By 1968, the NSF budget will stand at nearly $500 million.
- NSF selects Kitt Peak, near Tucson, Arizona, as the site of the first national observatory, a research center that would make state-of-the-art telescopes available to every astronomer in the nation. The Kitt Peak National Observatory ( KPNO) is a United States astronomical Observatory located on a 2096 m (6880 ft peak of the Tucson (ˈtuːsɒn is the seat of Pima County Arizona, United States, located 118 miles (188 km) southeast (Prior to this time, there was no equal access; major research telescopes were privately funded, and were available only to the astronomers who taught at the universities that ran them. ) Today, that idea has expanded to encompass the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, the National Solar Observatory, the Gemini Observatory and the Arecibo Observatory, all of which are funded in whole or in part by NSF. The United States National Optical Astronomy Observatory ( NOAO) consists of three observatories under one management structure Kitt Peak National The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO is a Federally Funded Research and Development Center of the United States National Science Foundation operated The mission of the National Solar Observatory is to advance knowledge of the Sun, both as an astronomical object and as the dominant external influence on Earth by providing The Gemini Observatory is an astronomical observatory consisting of two 8-metre Telescopes at different sites The Arecibo Observatory is a very sensitive Radio telescope located approximately south-southwest from the town of Arecibo in Puerto Rico. Along the way, moreover, NSF's astronomy program has forged a close working relationship with that of NASA, which was also founded in 1958: just as NASA has responsibility for the U. S. effort in space-based astronomy, NSF provides virtually all the U. S. federal support for ground-based astronomy.
- The United States and other nations operating in Antarctica conclude a treaty that reserves the continent for peaceful and scientific research. Shortly thereafter, a presidential directive based on the treaty gives NSF the responsibility for virtually all U. S. operations and research on the continent; the U. S. Antarctic Program continues to this day.
- Emphasis on international scientific and technological competition further accelerates NSF growth. The Foundation starts the Institutional Support Program, a capital funding program designed to build a research infrastructure among American universities; it will be the single largest beneficiary of NSF budget growth in the 1960s. NSF's appropriation is $152. 7 million; 2,000 grants are made.
- The Deep Sea Drilling Project begins. Over the years, the project reveals much new evidence about the theories of continental drift, sea floor spreading and the general usefulness of the ocean basins. The program also becomes a model of international cooperation as several foreign countries join the operation.
- NSF takes over management of twelve interdisciplinary materials research laboratories from the Defense Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA is an agency of the United States Department of Defense responsible for the development of new Technology These university-based laboratories had taken a more integrated approach than did most academic departments at the time, encouraging physicists, chemists, engineers, and metallurgists to cross departmental boundaries and use systems approaches to attack complex problems of materials synthesis or processing. NSF begins to expand these laboratories into a nationwide network of Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers. MRSEC is an acronym for Materials Research Science and Engineering Centers, funded by the United States National Science Foundation.
1972 : NSF launched the biennial Science & Engineering Indicators report to the President of the United States and U. S. Congress. Founded in 1968 as a research institution in bibliometrics and patent analytics ipIQ dba The Patent Board has provided patent indicators and science literature analysis since the intitial report in 1972.
- The first "Internet" is developed. The Internet is a global system of interconnected Computer networks This interconnection of unrelated networks is run by DARPA. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA is an agency of the United States Department of Defense responsible for the development of new Technology Over the next decade, increasing NSF involvement leads to a three-tiered system of internetworks managed by a mix of universities, nonprofit organizations and government agencies. By the mid-1980s, primary financial support for the growing project is assumed by the NSF. 
- The agency budget tops $1 billion for the first time. Major increases in the nation's research budget are proposed as the country recognizes the importance of research in science and technology, as well as education. A separate appropriation is established for the U. S. Antarctic Program. NSF receives more than 27,000 proposals and funds more than 12,000 of them.
- In November NSF delivers ozone sensors, along with balloons and helium, to researchers at the South Pole so they can measure stratospheric ozone loss. The action is taken in response to findings made in May of that year, indicating a steep drop in ozone over a period of several years. The Internet project, now known as NSFNET, continues. The National Science Foundation Network ( NSFNET) was a major part of early 1990s Internet backbone.
- NSF's appropriation passes $2 billion for the first time.
- NSF funds the development of several curricula based on the NCTM standards, devised by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Principles and Standards for School Mathematics is a book produced by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM in 2000 to set forth a national vision for precollege These standards are widely adopted by school districts during the subsequent decade. However, in what newspapers such as the Wall Street Journal later call the "math wars", organizations such as Mathematically Correct complain that some elementary texts based on the standards, including Mathland, have almost entirely abandoned any instruction of traditional arithmetic in favor of cutting, coloring, pasting, and writing. Mathematically Correct is a website created by educators parents mathematicians and scientists who were concerned about the direction of reform mathematics curricula based MathLand was one of many controversial mathematics curricula that were designed around the 1989 NCTM standards. During that debate, NSF is both lauded and criticized for favoring the standards.
- In March, the NSFNET acceptable use policy is altered to allow commercial traffic. An acceptable use policy ( AUP; also sometimes acceptable usage policy) is a set of rules applied by network and website owners By 1995, with the private, commercial market thriving, NSF decommissions the NSFNET, allowing for public use of the Internet.
- Students and staff working at the NSF-supported National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, develop Mosaic, the first freely available browser to allow World Wide Web pages that include both graphics and text. The National Center for Supercomputing Applications ( NCSA) is one of five original centers in the National Science Foundation 's Supercomputer Centers Program and a Mosaic is the browser which popularized the World Wide Web. It was also a browser for earlier concepts such as Ftp, Usenet, and Gopher The World Wide Web (commonly shortened to the Web) is a system of interlinked Hypertext documents accessed via the Internet. Within 18 months, NCSA Mosaic becomes the Web browser of choice for more than a million users, and sets off an exponential growth in the number of Web users.
- NSF, together with NASA and DARPA, launches the Digital Library Initiative. One of the first six grants goes to Stanford University, where two graduate students, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, begin to develop a search engine that uses the links between Web pages as a ranking method. Leland Stanford Junior University, commonly known as Stanford University or simply Stanford, is a private Research university located in They will later commercialize their search engine under the name Google. Google Inc is an American public corporation, earning revenue from advertising related to its Internet search, e-mail, online
- NSF-funded research establishes beyond doubt that the chemistry of the atmosphere above Antarctica is grossly abnormal and that levels of key chlorine compounds are greatly elevated. During two months of intense work, NSF researchers learn most of what we know today about the ozone hole.
- Two independent teams of NSF-supported astronomers discover that the expansion of the universe is actually speeding up, as if some previously unknown force, now known as dark energy, is driving the galaxies apart at an ever increasing rate. In Physical cosmology, dark energy is a hypothetical exotic form of Energy that permeates all of space and tends to increase the rate of expansion of the universe
- NSF joins with other federal agencies in the National Nanotechnology Initiative, dedicated to the understanding and control of matter at the atomic and molecular scale. Today, NSF's roughly $300 million annual investment in nanotechnology research is still one of the largest in the 23-agency initiative.
- NSF's appropriation passes $4 billion.
- The NSF's Survey of Public Attitudes Toward and Understanding of Science and Technology reveals that the public has a positive attitude toward science but a poor understanding of it. 
- NSF sends "rapid response" research teams to investigate the aftermath of the Indian Ocean Tsunami and Hurricane Katrina. An NSF-funded engineering team helps uncover why the levees failed in New Orleans. New Orleans (nʲuːˈɔrliənz nʲuːˈɔrlənz French: La Nouvelle-Orléans) is a major United States port city and the largest city in Louisiana
- NSF's budget stands at just over $5. 6 billion.
- NSF's budget stands at $5. 91 billion for the 2007 fiscal year that began on October 1, 2006 and runs through September 30, 2007.
- NSF requests $6. 43 billion dollars for FY 2008. (NSF Budgets).
Public attitudes and understanding
NSF surveys of public attitudes and knowledge have consistently shown that the public has a positive view of science but has little scientific understanding. The greatest deficit remains the public's understanding of the scientific method. Scientific method refers to bodies of Techniques for investigating phenomena 
- Library of Congress Digital Library project
- National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program
- United States National Academy of Sciences
- U.S. Civilian Research & Development Foundation
- Capital Jury Project
- International counterparts:
- U. The Library of Congress National Digital Library Program (NDLP is assembling a digital Library of reproductions of Primary source materials to support the study of The National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program is a national strategic program being led by the Library of Congress to preserve digital content The National Academy of Sciences (NAS is a corporation in the United States whose members serve Pro bono as "advisers to the nation on science The US Civilian Research & Development Foundation (CRDF is a " The Capital Jury Project (CJP is a consortium of university-based research studies on the decision-making of Jurors in Death penalty cases in the United States The Royal Society of London for the Improvement of Natural Knowledge, known simply as The Royal Society, is a Learned society for science that was founded in 1660 The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (abbreviated DFG, German Research Foundation in English) is an important German research funding organization S. Department of Education exemplary mathematics programs
- Mid-InfraRed Technologies for Health and the Environment (MIRTHE) (largely based at Princeton University in the US)
Science and Engineering Indicators, published by the National Science Board, provides a broad base of quantitative information on the U. S. and international science and engineering enterprise.
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