Summary of FY2002 Budget Request to Congress - National Science Foundation


The FY 2002 Budget Request for the Experimental and Integrative Activities (EIA) Subactivity is $57.81 million, an decrease of $3.14 million, or 5.2 percent, below the FY 2001 Current Plan of $60.95 million.

(Millions of Dollars)

   FY 2000 Actual FY 2001
FY 2002 Request Change
Amount Percent
Experimental and Integrative Activities
Total, EIA

The EIA Subactivity facilitates new ventures and the evolution of CISE-related disciplines, and encourages activities that cross traditional boundaries. Specifically, EIA promotes new and typically multidisciplinary research initiatives, builds capacity in terms of people and facilities, and assesses the impact of IT research, education and technology on society. EIA has a balanced portfolio across NSF's three strategic goals.

Approximately $25.0 million in multidisciplinary research funding supports projects that cross the disciplinary boundaries within CISE as well as core research projects that have application outside of CISE areas. Approximately $20.0 million for instrumentation and infrastructure efforts provides funding for groups of investigators for equipment (such as high-performance computers, robots, or visualization devices) and operations that enables multi-investigator research. Education, human resources, and workforce programs provide approximately $10.0 million to support research on uses of technology to improve learning, the transfer of research advances into college and graduate level curricula, and to increase the participation of under-represented groups in educational and career paths in IT. EIA provides approximately $2.0 million to support workshops, symposia, studies, travel and international activities related to areas and issues of interest to CISE and CISE grantees.

Among the successes resulting from prior EIA funding are:

  • Carnegie Mellon University's VuMan series of wearable computers allow a user to move through a house or campus, while accessing a map, image database, or textual database. One of the key problems is energy consumption. Employing a Theory of Energy Locality method for analyzing the power consumption of mobile computers, CMU researchers have reduced complexity, weight, volume, and power consumption by a factor of four. This was accomplished with an increase of over a factor of two in capability and a reduction of 40 percent in design/fabrication effort.

  • The National Center for Sign Language and Gesture Resources, a cooperative project of the University of Pennsylvania and Boston University, has developed facilities for computerized acquisition and analysis of American Sign Language video data. The Center represents a unique collaboration between researchers in linguistics and computer science toward the collection of a linguistically valid, labeled, digital video database for the study of sign language and gesture.

  • A longitudinal evaluation by the University of Wisconsin shows the Distributed Mentor Project (DMP) to be spectacularly successful at meeting its primary goal of increasing the number of women entering graduate school in Computer Science and Engineering (CS&E). The DMP project linked female undergraduate students with volunteer faculty mentors in universities across the United States. The evaluation conducted at Wisconsin showed that the best male CS&E graduates were 10 times more likely to enter graduate or professional school within one year of graduation than a comparable group of female CS&E graduates. However, for the DMP participants, over 50% were enrolled in graduate or professional school the year following their graduation, exceeding the enrollment rate for males.

Areas of emphasis for FY 2002 include:

  • Creating rapid response mechanisms to identify and support new opportunities within and across traditional and emerging research areas. EIA plans to expand its investments at the intersection of information technology and biology research and in information-technology-enhanced learning and teaching. Within the biology and IT intersection, EIA will emphasize biomolecular computing, biologically-inspired information technology, and bioinformatics as well as coordinate CISE participation in the NSF-wide Biocomplexity in the Environment priority area. EIA will also continue its investment in the Digital Government and Data-Driven Application Systems programs.

  • Organizing a portfolio of instrumentation and infrastructure programs to provide research equipment generally unavailable on individual research awards, ranging from specialized instrumentation for small research groups to large-scale infrastructure to nationally and internationally shared facilities, which are closely tied to research. Participation by emerging, regionally disadvantaged, and underrepresented groups will be ensured through partnerships and special programs.

  • Focusing activities in education, human resources and workforce on the underlying issues, needs and components of teaching and learning, workforce needs, pipeline problems, and underrepresented groups in information technology. The Information Technology Workforce Program is the primary program in this area, and EIA will continue to participate in many cross-directorate activities, including the Combined Research Curriculum Development (CRCD) program, the Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education (GK-12), and in the Interagency Education Research Initiative (IERI).

Priority activities for reallocated funding include:

  • Adding $2.0 million to support for research at the biology-IT interface, where IT research can greatly benefit biology (genomics, pathways, gene expression and function) and where biology can benefit IT research (macromolecular computation, hybrid devices, new modes and models for computation).

  • $800,000 to enhance the Research in Interactive Education program to develop the research base for new means of using IT for enhancing learning for any age group, in any setting, for any learning goal, and at any convenient time and place.

  • Providing $500,000 to enhance programs including Application-Focused Software Systems, and Digital Government.

  • Coordinating CISE support for the ADVANCE program funded at $2.39 million, to promote opportunities for women to develop careers in computer science and engineering research.

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