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The FY 2003 Budget Request for the Design, Manufacture, and Industrial Innovation Subactivity is $141.23 million, an increase of $5.03 million, or 3.7 percent, above the FY 2002 Current Plan of $136.20 million.

(Millions of Dollars)


FY 2001

FY 2002
Current Plan

FY 2003




Design, Manufacture and Industrial Innovation






Small Business-Industrial Innovation






Total, DMII






The Design, Manufacture, and Industrial Innovation (DMII) Subactivity supports academic research and education activities that spur innovation and enhanced productivity in a broad range of U.S. industries. These activities also support the development of a well-educated and diverse human resource base that is vital to U.S. global competitiveness. DMII identifies the underlying design and manufacturing theories for the innovation of new products, processes and systems in a wide variety of enterprises. Discoveries and major advances in understanding engineering design, operations research, manufacturing enterprise systems, service enterprise engineering, nanomanufacturing, materials processing and manufacturing and manufacturing machines and equipment form the core of DMII. In 2003, DMII envisions increased participation in NSF-wide initiatives. In parallel, DMII plans on an expansion of the core programs targeting sensors in design, manufacture and service enterprise.

Nanomanufacturing will be a key component of Nanoscale Science and Engineering priority area, focusing on converting discoveries from nanoscience into new products for the benefit of society. While nanoscience is uncovering novel physical, mechanical, electrical, magnetic, chemical and biological properties, a range of manufacturing issues need to be addressed to build products, devices and components that take advantage of these unique properties. Simultaneously, an entirely new manufacturing workforce needs to be educated and trained in nanotechnology to bring to fruition many exciting opportunities that nanotechnology has opened up.

The Materials Use: Science, Engineering, and Society (MUSES) program is a new emphasis of the Biocomplexity in the Environment priority area, supporting the design and synthesis of new materials with environmentally benign impact on biocomplex systems. Opportunities exist to integrate life cycle product design methodologies with manufacturing enterprise systems to realize benefits of reduced energy consumption without adverse environmental impact.

Information Technology Research applied to production systems has reaped significant economic benefits in the manufacturing sector such as applications of supply chain management. Engineering research has an opportunity to make a similar significant contribution to the fast growing service sector such as health care delivery systems.

National tragic events in 2001 introduced new elements of uncertainty in the realm of global manufacturing. The Mathematical Sciences priority area offers advances in distributed sensors systems, scalable manufacturing enterprise systems and in managing and modeling uncertainty. Engineering already leads the way in advanced sensor systems such as airbag sensors for occupant safety in cars. The Engineering Design Program has an established foundation on design decisions under uncertain conditions. There is an opportunity to expand on this knowledge base and address issues from product design to manufacturing enterprise system protection in order to decrease the vulnerability of national infrastructures.

More scientists and engineers are now employed in high technology small businesses than in large businesses. The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs provide support to small businesses for research in advanced materials and manufacturing, biotechnology, electronics and information technology with a goal of converting scientific discoveries to innovations for the benefit of society via job and wealth creation.

DMII promotes partnerships between industry and university through Grant Opportunities for Academic Liaison with Industry (GOALI) program as well as by the STTR program. DMII, in collaboration with the Social, Behavioral and Economics (SBE) Activity, supports research in understanding of the innovation process through the Innovation and Organizational Change (IOC) program.

Retrospective assessments have found that DMII grants have resulted in fundamental contributions and, in some cases, led either to the creation of new research fields or the production of seminal knowledge in design and manufacturing. These studies have also documented the eventual commercialization and economic impact of many DMII investments. Results include breakthrough advances in solid free-form fabrication technology, pioneering work in nanotechnology for mass storage devices, and the establishment of supply chain management as a bonafide research field.

FY 2003 increases, with some reallocation of base funds, include support of:

  • The Nanoscale Science and Engineering priority area, for nano-manufacturing, covering nano-features enhancement in micro/meso products and devices, nano-assembly and connectivity, nano-process control and nano-system integration;

  • Biocomplexity in the Environment research, to achieve an environmentally sound and economically attractive manufacturing enterprise;

  • The Information Technology Research priority area, for research leading to productivity gains in manufacture and service enterprise systems such as health care delivery;

  • The Mathematical Sciences priority area, for engineering research on modeling nonlinear systems and scalable manufacturing enterprise systems;

  • Engineering sensor systems research, to design and manufacture products that can protect and trigger corrective steps in advance of catastrophic failures; and

  • The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program and the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program.
  Last Modified: Sep 17, 2004


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National Science Foundation Summary of FY 2003 Budget Request to Congress NSF Logo