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National Science Foundation

4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22230


TDD, 800-281-8749 | Email:


CHAIR Diane L. Souvaine
Vice Chair Ellen Ochoa

Member John L. Anderson
Member Deborah L. Ball
Member Roger Beachy
Member Arthur Bienenstock
Member Vinton G. Cerf
Member Vicki Chandler
Member Ruth David
Member W. Kent Fuchs
Member Inez Fung
Member Robert M. Groves
Member James S. Jackson
Member G. Peter Lepage
Member W. Carl Lineberger
Member Stephen L. Mayo
Member Victor R. McCrary
Member Emilio F. Moran
Member Ellen Ochoa
Member Sethuraman Panchanathan
Member George P. Peterson
Member Julia M. Phillips
Member Geraldine Richmond
Member Anneila I. Sargent

Member (ex officio) France A. Córdova
Executive Officer (nonmember) Michael L. Van Woert


DIRECTOR France A. Córdova
Deputy Director (vacancy)
Chief, Operating Officer F. Fleming Crim

Assistant Director, Biological Sciences Joanne S. Tornow, Acting
Assistant Director, Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering James F. Kurose
Assistant Director, Education and Human Resources William (Jim) Lewis
Assistant Director, Engineering Dawn Tilbury
Assistant Director, Geosciences William E. Easterling
Assistant Director, Mathematical and Physical Sciences Anne Kinney
Assistant Director, Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences Fay L. Cook

General Counsel Lawrence Rudolph
Inspector General Allison C. Lerner

Office Head, Office of Budget, Finance and Award Management / Chief Financial Officer Teresa Grancorvitz
Office Head, Office of Diversity and Inclusion Rhonda J. Davis
Office Head, Office of Information and Resource Management / Chief Human Capital Officer Wonzie L. Gardner, Acting
Office Head, Office of Integrative Activities Suzanne Iacono
Office Head, Office of Legislative and Public Affairs Amanda H. Greenwell
Office Head, Office of International Science and Engineering Rebecca L. Keiser
Chief Information Officer Dorothy Aronson

The National Science Foundation supports research and education to advance science and engineering.

Organizational Chart

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent agency created by the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1861-1875).

The NSF increases the Nation's base of scientific and engineering knowledge; strengthens its ability to conduct research in all areas of science and engineering; develops and helps implement science and engineering education programs to meet the challenges of the future; and promotes international cooperation through science and engineering. As a leading Federal supporter of science and engineering, the Foundation also plays an important role in national policy planning.

With the advice and consent of the Senate, the President appoints the Director to a 6-year term and the Deputy Director to an unspecified term. The National Science Board (NSB) guides the NSF's activities. Including the chair and vice chair, the Board comprises 24 members—plus the Director of the NSF, who serves as an ex officio member. Members are appointed by the President to 6-year terms, one-third of the Members being appointed every 2 years. Appointees are known for distinguished service in science, engineering, education, research management, or public affairs, and for an outlook that broadly represents that of national science and engineering leadership. The NSB monitors national policy and makes recommendations to promote the health of U.S. science and engineering research and education.

The Foundation's Office of Inspector General conducts and supervises audits, inspections, and investigations on the programs and operations of the Foundation, including allegations of misconduct in science.


The NSF initiates and supports fundamental, long-term, merit-selected research in the scientific and engineering disciplines through grants, contracts, and other agreements awarded to universities, colleges, academic consortia, and nonprofit and small business institutions. Most of this research centers on answering scientific and engineering questions of fundamental life processes, natural laws and phenomena, fundamental processes influencing the human environment, and the forces affecting people as members of society as well as the behavior of society as a whole.

The Foundation encourages cooperative efforts involving universities, industries, and government. It also promotes research and development for better products and services that improve the quality of life and stimulate economic growth.

The Foundation cultivates talent by supporting undergraduate and graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. It administers special programs to identify and encourage participation of underrepresented groups in science and technology and to strengthen research capability at small institutions and businesses and at colleges and universities.

It supports major national and international science and engineering activities, including the U.S. Antarctic Program, Ocean Drilling Program, and global geoscience studies. Cooperative scientific and engineering research activities support exchange programs for American and foreign scientists and engineers, execution of jointly designed research projects, participation in international science and engineering organizational activities, and travel to international conferences.

Contracts and cooperative agreements with national centers allow qualified scientists and engineers use of large facilities. The Foundation supports national centers associated with astronomy and atmospheric sciences, biological and engineering research, science and technology, supercomputers, and long-term ecological research sites.

The Foundation's science and engineering education activities include grants for research and development of instructional materials for students and teachers and the application of advanced technologies to education. Grants also are available for teacher preparation and enhancement and informal science education activities. Funding is provided for college science instrumentation, course and curriculum improvement, faculty and student activities, and minority resource centers. The NSF also supports studies of the status of math, science, and engineering education.

The Vannevar Bush Award is given annually to an outstanding contributor to the welfare of the Nation and mankind through public service in science and technology. The Alan T. Waterman Award is given annually to a promising young scientist or engineer to support research and study. The Foundation also presents its Public Service Award to one individual and to one company, corporation, or organization for increasing public understanding of science or engineering through public service in areas other than research. The Foundation administratively supports the President's Committee on the National Medal of Science.

Sources of Information


The NSF funds science and engineering research and education through contracts, cooperative agreements, and grants. The Foundation provides approximately 20 percent of the Federal support that academic institutions receive for basic research.

Board and Committee Meetings

Webcasts of NSB open sessions and committee meetings that are held in Arlington, VA, remain available for at least 1 year after the event. Transcripts of closed sessions of the NSB, its committees, and other subentities are available upon request by email. | Email:

Business Opportunities

The NSF publicizes contracting and subcontracting opportunities in the "Commerce Business Daily" and other appropriate publications. Organizations seeking contract work should contact either the Division of Acquisition and Cooperative Support or the Division of Administrative Services, National Science Foundation, Arlington, VA 22230.

Division of Acquisition and Cooperative Support. Phone, 703-292-8240.

Division of Administrative Services. Phone, 703-292-8190.

Career Opportunities

To carry out its mission, the NSF relies on educators, engineers, mathematicians, program directors, and statisticians, as well as on professionals with administrative, business, and management backgrounds. The NSF also offers career opportunities—internship and recent graduates programs and the Presidential Management Fellows program—for students and recent graduates.


Consult the online "Guide to Programs / Browse Funding Opportunities" and appropriate announcements and brochures for postdoctoral fellowship opportunities that may be available through some NSF divisions. Beginning graduate and minority graduate students wanting to apply for fellowships should contact the Directorate for Education and Human Resources. Phone, 703-292-8600.

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

A request for agency records should be submitted in accordance with the NSF's FOIA regulation (45 CFR 612). A request should be clearly labeled as "FOIA REQUEST" and be addressed to the FOIA Officer, Office of General Counsel, National Science Foundation, Room 1265, Arlington, VA 22230. Phone, 703-292-8060. Fax, 703-292-9242. | Email:


The NSF maintains a small glossary online.


The NSF makes the current guide for grant proposals available on its Web site.

Office of Inspector General (OIG)

The OIG investigates complaints of abuse, fraud, and waste; protects whistleblowers; and posts semiannual reports and other publications online. A hotline intake form is available online to submit allegations for review. Phone, 703-292-7100. Fax, 703-292-9159. | Email:

Privacy Act

A request for personal records should be submitted in accordance with the NSF's Privacy Act regulation (45 CFR 613). A request should be clearly labeled as "PRIVACY ACT REQUEST" and be addressed to the Privacy Act Officer, National Science Foundation, Room 1265, Arlington, VA 22230. Phone, 703-292-8060.


The NSF maintains an online document system to support the electronic dissemination of its documents. The online library contains thousands of documents that may be downloaded free of charge. Some NSF publications are available only in print, and others (e.g., the "Grant Proposal Guide" and "Award and Administration Guide") may be inconvenient to download. To obtain these publications in hardcopy, contact the NSF Publications Clearinghouse in Arlington, VA. Phone, 703-292-7827. | Email:

Search or browse the online document library.

Reading Room

NSF policy documents and staff instructions, as well as current indexes, are available to the public for inspection and copying. To gain access to the collection, a visitor must schedule an appointment in advance with the library, which is open on weekdays, excluding Federal holidays, 8:00 a.m.–4 p.m. The reading room is located in the National Science Foundation Library, Room 225, Arlington, VA 22230. Phone, 703-292-7830.


Small Business Support

The Office of Small Business Research and Development informs small businesses with science and technology research capabilities about NSF support that could benefit them. The Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization oversees agency compliance with the provisions of the Small Business Act and the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, as amended. Phone, 703-292-8050.

The Small Business Innovation Research and Technology Transfer program helps startups and small businesses carry out scientific research and development. | Email:

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