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FY 2003 Appropriations for the National Science Foundation (NSF)
(numbers are in millions)
|NSF||FY 2002 Estimate||President's FY 2003 Request||FY03 House||FY03 Senate||FY03 Omnibus||% Change FY02 vs FY03|
|Research & Related Activities (RRA):|
|Computer & Information Science & Engineering (CISE)||516||527||592||617||578||12.0%|
|Mathematical & Physical Sciences (MPS)||922||941||1,060||1,057||1,034||12.1%|
|Social, Behavioral & Economic Sciences||169||196||195||196||191||13.0%|
|Major Research Instrum.||76||54||94||104||84||10.5%|
|Total, Research & Related Activities||3,598||3,783*||4,150||4,132||4,056||12.7%|
|Education & Human Resources||875||908||910||948||903||3.2%|
|Math & Science Partnership||160||200||160||120||127.5||-20.3%|
|Major Research Equipment & Facilities Construction||139||126||159.5||79.3||148||6.4%|
Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction (MREFC) Account:
|Project||FY 2002||FY 2003 Request||FY 2003 House||FY 2003 Senate||FY 2003 Omnibus|
|Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) Construction (Phase II)||12.5||30.0||30.0||30.0||30.0|
|IceCube Neutrino Detector||15.0||0||24.7||0||24.7|
|Large Hadron Collider||16.9||9.7||9.7||9.7||9.7|
|Network for Earthquake Engineering Simulations (NEES)||24.4||13.5||13.5||13.5||25.5|
|National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON)||0||12.0||0||TBD pending a report||0|
|South Pole Station||0||6.0||6.0||6.0||6.0|
|Terascale Computing Systems||35.0||20.0||10.0||Moved to RRA ($10.0)||10.0|
Multidisciplinary Priority Areas:
|Priority Area||FY 2002||FY 2003 Request||% change FY 02 vs. FY 03 Request|
|Biocomplexity in the Environment||58.1||79.2||36.3%|
|Information Technology Research||277.5||285.8||3.0%|
|Nanoscale Science & Engineering||198.7||221.2||11.3%|
|Learning for the 21st Century||144.8||184.7||27.5%|
|Social, Behavioral & Economic Sciences (new priority area)||0.0||10.0||n/a|
NOTES on the FY03 Omnibus bill approved by the House and Senate 2/18/03:
Members of the House and Senate approved the FY03 spending bill for the remaining 11 appropriations bills last Thursday. The omnibus numbers above reflect the 0.65% across-the-board recission. The President is expected to sign the bill.
Within Research and Related Activities directorates, the conference report directs NSF to give a high priority to increasing research opportunities for investigator initiated research in the core scientific disciplines, and to provide a substantial increase in the average award, as well as increase the number of awards to those individuals and institutions not well represented in the Nation's research enterprise.
Within GEO, the report language stipulates that NSF is expected to provide "adequate funding to augment support for the national user facilities within this directorate as well as move forward on the integrated ocean drilling program."
Within Education and Human Resources, the conferees increased stipends in the fellowship programs and traineeship program to $27,000 per year, and then increase them to $30,000 per year in FY 2005.
NOTES on the House VA-HUD Subcommittee's mark (10/9/02)
The House Appropriations Committee approved its version of the VA-HUD bill on 10/9 — nine days into the new fiscal year. The next step is for the House and Senate conferees to reconcile the two versions of the bill. It will then go to the House and Senate floors for a vote and then to the President for approval. There is no indication of when any of this will happen, as Congress plans to adjourn Oct. 18. It is expected Congress will agree on a Continuing Resolution to run through Nov. 22.
The House Appropriations Committee provided NSF with a 12.8 percent increase over FY 2002, and a 15.3 percent increase for Research and Related Activities. This increase provides for an increase of at least 15 percent for seven of the nine RRA directorates and includes the following language: "The Foundation should give the highest priority to increasing research opportunities for investigator initiated research in the core scientific disciplines." The Geosciences Directorate received a 15 percent increase over FY 2002, and does not reflect any of the proposed transfers (from the President's request).
Within the Mathematics and Physical Sciences Directorate, the Committee report states that it expects NSF to allocate funds on a basis which provides a high priority for astronomy, including individual investigator grants, and sufficient resources to begin development of important new projects recommended in a recent National Academy of Sciences 10-year plan for astronomical science activities. The Committee recommends the following funding levels within MPS:
- National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center: $11.0 million (up $2 million from the request);
- National Optical Astronomy Observatories: $36 million for base funding (up $4.3 million from the request), and $4.0 million for the Telescope Systems Instrumentation Program (same as the President's request)
- National Radio Astronomy Observatory: $44.6 million (up $5 million from the request)
The House bill includes $1 million for the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) to conduct a study of NSF's organizational, programmatic, and personnel structures. The House bill specifically requests a review of the following:
Organizational and program structure: The House report states that there is concern that NSF "may have become overly bureaucratic. Some observers have characterized this current structure as both Byzantine and balkanized."
Balance between field driven and NSF driven science priority setting: The House report questions whether there is a proper balance between NSF leadership and the need to ensure that agency-supported research remains principally investigator initiated. Also, the House report questions whether there is an
appropriate balance currently between NSF initiatives and core science investments.
Role of the National Science Board: As in the Senate version of the bill, the House report contains language questioning whether the National Science Board has enough autonomy in its relationship with NSF's leadership. However, unlike the Senate bill, the House does not provide a new, separate funding line for the Board, but rather asks that the NAPA review assess the situation.
NOTES on the Senate VA-HUD Subcommittee's mark (7/26/02)
The Senate Appropriations Committee approved its version of the VA-HUD bill on 7/25, providing NSF with an 11.7 percent increase over FY 2002, and a 14 percent increase for Research & Related Activities, the level consistent with the House-approved goal to double the NSF research budget over five years. The House isn't expected to mark up its version of the bill until after the August recess.
Following are highlights from the committee report: — the entire Senate VA-HUD report can be found at: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/cpquery/R?cp107:FLD010:@1(sr222):
The Committee rejected the President's request of $691.1 million for GEO, which would have included three program transfers from other agencies: the Environmental Protection Agency's Environmental Education program ($9.0 million), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Sea Grant program ($57 million), and the United States Geological Survey's Hydrology of Toxic Substances program ($10 million).
Moreover, the Senate has specified that $15 million of the additional $75 million for the GEO directorate would be targeted for national centers and the Integrated Ocean Drilling program supported by GEO. The Senate language applauds the high priority research in earth, oceans, and the atmosphere currently being conducted by these centers. The Assistant Director of GEO will determine the allocations of the remaining increase to the three directorates, Atmospheric Sciences, Earth Sciences and Ocean Sciences.
Senate Language on Climate Change:
The President's proposed Climate Change Research Initiative (CCRI) included $15 million for NSF to focus on four areas: understanding the carbon cycle, decision-making, measuring carbon dioxide and methane, and measuring and understanding black carbon. The Senate language on CCRI follows:
"As a key part of the Administration's climate change research initiative, the Committee recognizes the Nation needs substantially better information on the current and future state of the ocean and its role in environmental change. Adequate predictive capability is a prerequisite to the development of sound policies at the national and regional level, policies ranging from maritime commerce to public health, from fisheries to safety of life and property, from climate change to national security. The Committee urges NSF to move ahead to support an ocean observatories initiative that is tightly integrated with the Administration's interagency climate change science program."
Within Education and Human Resources:
Good news for graduate students! The Committee increased stipends in the fellowship programs and traineeship program to $30,000 per year (up from $21,500) with the following language: "The Committee recognizes that graduate stipends in science and engineering need to be made more attractive to students to compensate for the cost of education and mounting student debt, and to offset opportunities for higher salaries offered by employers to science and engineering baccalaureate degree holders."
The Committee provided the Historically Black Colleges and Universities — Undergraduate Program $19 million, $5 million above the request.
The Committee provided $70 million to the Informal Science Education program, the first increase it has received in three years.
NOTES on the President's FY 2003 budget request (2/4/02):
In the FY 2003 request, GEO will manage three programs being transferred to NSF from other agencies:
- Environmental Education formerly at the EPA ($9 million)
- National Sea Grant Program formerly at NOAA($57 million)
- Hydrology of Toxic Substances program formerly at USGS ($10 million).
Not counting these transfers (totaling $76 million), Research and Related Activities for FY03 received $3.707 billion, up 3.0%. If you subtract the transfers from Geosciences (GEO), this account received only $615 million, a 0.65% increase. The transfers within Atmospheric Sciences (ATM) total $8.56 million ($5.0 million for the Sea Grant program and $3.56 million for the Environmental Education program) — not including these transfers, ATM is up 4.1%. NSF's total budget, not including the transfers, is $4.952 billion, up 3.4%.
Two new projects have received funding in the MREFC account in the President's request: EarthScope and NEON.
Earthscope is an earthquake detection and research network, to investigate the structure and evolution of the North American continent and the physical processes controlling earthquake and volcanic eruptions. EarthScope will use state-of-the-art technology to gather data that will be used to assess and mitigate national risks associated with earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and landslides.
NEON: Funding will establish two prototype sites of the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON). NEON will develop and deploy cutting-edge data collection and monitoring tools, and will construct integrated models of ecosystem function and dynamics. Sites will share data and resources through high-speed Internet connections. When fully implemented, NEON will provide the capability to integrate ecological data and deepen understanding of complex ecosystem dynamics at the local, regional, and national levels. Data gathered, monitored, analyzed and modeled will establish a baseline against which to detect abrupt changes or long-term trends, such as climate change, and enhance our ability to predict their effects. In this way, NEON could act as an early detection system for a wide array of biological and chemical threats, from invasive species to chemical and biological warfare agents.
Terascale Computing Systems: Funding will continue for this project, which will provide access to scalable, balanced, terascale computing resources for the broad-based academic science and engineering community served by NSF.
Excerpts from the FY03 Budget Request
From RRA's Mathematical Sciences narrative:
"Investigations will focus on the challenges posed by large data sets such as those generated by research on genomes, and by today's sophisticated sensors and satellite observation systems, including seismic and global oceanic and atmospheric observational networks. Other studies will produce improved methods for assessing uncertainty, and enhance our ability to forecast extreme or singular events, improving the safety and reliability of such systems as power grids, the Internet and air traffic control."
From RRA's Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences narrative:
"A special emphasis will be on decision-making under uncertainty as part of the President's Climate Change Research Initiative."
From RRA's Information Technology Research (ITR) narrative:
"Studies will continue to explore new applications to advance research across all fields. Other research will focus on providing a sound basis for assured construction and certification of safe, trusted computing systems in interconnected environments — needed both to support business applications and to provide security for cyberinfrastructure. An emphasis on the interactions between humans and computers will advance understanding of the educational impacts and uses of IT, and of issues in IT literacy and IT workforce development, including a focus on barriers and impediments to IT careers among women, minorities, and other underrepresented groups. Research will address fundamental questions about the efficacy of IT in education, examine theories and models of learning, and integrate cutting-edge IT research into curricula and classrooms. ITR will also support the creation of digital library collections and the development of advanced technologies for managing and working with digital information."
From RRA's Learning for the 21 st Century Workforce narrative:
"The centerpiece of the FY 2003 investment in this priority area is the new Science of Learning Centers activity. This program creates multidisciplinary, multi-institutional centers to expand our understanding of learning through research on the learning process, the context of learning and learning technologies. The centers will serve as national resources, and will play a critical role in the demonstration of effective workforce preparation strategies. NSF expects to support three to four centers and provide seed funding for a number of projects that could eventually develop into centers.
"Other activities in this priority area will explore the potential of information technology to enhance learning, and create activities to strengthen the links between formal and informal education and across educational levels. Investment in Centers for Learning and Teaching will provide lifelong learning opportunities for the instructional workforce in contexts supported by information technology tools and by research on learning, science and mathematics."
Highlights from Education and Human Resources (EHR) Directorate:
The Math and Science Partnership (MSP)
MSP will provide funds for preK-12 schools to unite with institutions of higher education and other partners (including industry) in strengthening preK-12 math and science education. The President is requesting $200.0 million for MSP for FY 2003, an increase of $40.0 million from the FY 2002 level. Schools will establish partnership agreements with colleges, universities, and community colleges. The success of partnerships will be measured through performance indicators such as increasing student participation in advanced courses in math/science and their success in passing advanced placement exams, and increasing the numbers of prospective teachers who major in math or science.
FY03 Funding for underrepresented groups:
- Tribal Colleges and Universities Program: $9.98 million
- Historically Black Colleges and Universities — Undergraduate Program:$13.97 million
- The Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation program: $26.53 million
- The Model Institutions of Excellence program: $9.81 million
FY03 Request for a National STEM Education Digital Library (NSDL): $27.5 million (down $960,000 from FY02). The NSDL responds to needs articulated by the NSF, the academic community, and corporate leaders for accelerating improvements in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education. The NSDL, capitalizing on recent developments in digital libraries, will provide: a forum for the merit review and recognition of quality educational resources; a mechanism for electronic dissemination of information about high-quality educational materials, pedagogical practices, and implementation strategies; a centralized registry and archive for educational resources; and a resource for research in teaching and learning. In addition, the NSDL will provide an infrastructure to support and accelerate the impact of NSF programs. For example, developers of curricula and courses will benefit from awareness and knowledge of extant instructional materials, as well as information on their implementation.
Graduate and Professional Education
Stipends for fellows and trainees in the Graduate Research Fellowships (GRF) program, the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeships (IGERT) program, and the Graduate Teaching Fellowships in K-12 Education (GK-12) program would be increased to $25,000/year (current are $21,500).
Highlights from Mathematical & Physical Sciences (MPS) Directorate:
FY03 Request for the National Astronomy Centers:
- National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center: $9.0 million
- National Optical Astronomy Observatories: $31.7 million for base funding, plus $4.0 million for the Telescope Systems Instrumentation Program
- National Radio Astronomy Observatory: $39.6 million
Highlights from CISE Directorate:
FY03 Request for the Partnerships for Advanced Computational Infrastructure (PACI) program: $71 million (down $3 million)
FY03 Request for Advanced Networking Infrastructure: $47 million (down $1 million)
Multidisciplinary Priority Areas (see second table above), the Geosciences Directorate would receive the following:
- Biocomplexity in the Environment: $22.2 million, a 3.4% decrease;
Information Technology Research: $13.2 million, an 8.6% increase to support activities that focus on the following:
- Development of comprehensive coupled models that include ensemble forecasting, nesting and/or data assimilation techniques to understand the complex interactions taking place in the Earth system;
- Development of tools for knowledge discovery, visualization and interpretation of large-scale heterogeneous data sets;
- Development of the infrastructure to find, access, retrieve, and integrate geospatial data from distributed, heterogeneous sources in a way that makes them useful for scientific research; and
- Extension of local networking and computing capabilities in support of large-scale modeling and database activities in the geosciences.
- Nanoscale Science & Engineering: $7.5 million, a 10.7% increase;
- Learning for the 21st Century: $4.2 million, an 8.5% increase;
- Mathematical Sciences: $4.6 million (received no funds in FY02);
- Social, Behaviorial & Economic Sciences: No number is called out within GEO in this new priority area, however $5 million is for research on risk management as part of the Climate Change Research Initiative.
Climate Change Research Initiative:
The President created the Climate Change Research Initiative (CCRI) to complement ongoing research funded under the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) and other related technology research programs that address climate change. The President's budget request for CCRI is $40 million to be shared among five agencies. NSF would receive $15 million in FY03. The overall goal for CCRI is "responding to key gaps in knowledge. CCRI will adopt performance metrics and deliver products useful to policymakers in a short time frame (2-5 years)."
NSF's CCRI investments will support investigations in four areas:
- Advancing our understanding of the carbon cycle;
- Improving our ability to manage the risks associated with climate change and to make sound decisions, despite uncertainty;
- Developing sensors to measure carbon dioxide and methane;
- Measuring and understanding the impact of black carbon.
"The initiative will include the development of improved sensors and diagnostic systems for observing, modeling, and analyzing carbon dioxide, methane, and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the oceans, and terrestrial environments, including soils. As part of this effort, better data on black carbon particles, a significant source of aerosols in the atmosphere, will be collected and integrated into climate models to gain a better understanding of the magnitude of their effect on climate.
"These studies will also incorporate a vigorous modeling and data synthesis effort to improve and refine climate change models. Research on risk communication and management, together with the development of information bases and improved tools to support decisions, will enhance national capacity to make informed policy decisions on climate change. Through workshops and consultation with the community, NSF will develop consensus on promising research directions in these areas, and establish 3 to 4 interdisciplinary risk management research centers. These focused investigations will complement NSF's ongoing programs in climate change science."