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The FY 2003 Budget Request for the International Science and Engineering (INT) Subactivity is $27.0 million, an increase of $1.01 million, or 3.9 percent, from the FY 2002 Current Plan of $25.99 million.

(Millions of Dollars)


FY 2001

FY 2002
Current Plan

FY 2003




International Science and Engineering1






Total, INT






1FY 2001 includes a transfer of $13.75 million from the U.S. Department of State for an award to the U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation.

The INT Subactivity provides the expertise and networks to stimulate research cooperation with scientists and engineers in most of the developed and developing countries of the world and in all fields of science and engineering supported by the Foundation.

INT facilitates the advancement of NSF's strategic outcome goal of People - to develop and maintain a diverse, internationally competitive and globally engaged workforce of scientists and engineers. INT supports research and related activities that promote partnerships between U.S. and foreign researchers, enhance access to critical research conducted outside the U.S., and broaden the base of knowledge about mutually beneficial science and technology opportunities abroad. INT supports U.S. participation in both bilateral and multilateral workshops and symposia, the initial phases of collaborative research, key selected multinational scientific bodies, and individual and small group research training.

INT provides valuable international experiences to U.S. researchers particularly those in the early stages of their careers. Specific INT-supported activities include:

  • Summer research experiences for students in selected regions of the world;
  • Postdoctoral research opportunities abroad;
  • Inclusion of students in international cooperative research projects; and
  • Opportunities for U.S. researchers to develop collaborations with their counterparts in other countries.

Together, these activities will enable the next generation of U.S. researchers to maintain leadership in an increasingly global research environment.

With the continuing growth of scientific resources worldwide, there are increasing opportunities for international cooperation in areas of mutual interest or concern. The development of International Long-Term Ecological Research (ILTER) sites in Southern Africa enables U.S. and foreign researchers to conduct cross-site studies to compare and synthesize data on long-term ecological processes. Many of the sites will also afford researchers the opportunity to study the impact of transboundary issues (such as shared water resources or the development of transnational parks), and the results can be a valuable benefit in the development of scientifically-based ecosystem management plans. To promote the establishment of ILTER sites in the southern Africa region, INT in conjunction with the Environmental Biology Subactivity fostered interaction between researchers from Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe and those at various U.S. sites. Currently one ILTER site exists in Namibia. Other proposed sites include the Okavango Delta in Botswana, a shared river basin in Mozambique, and sites in the Kruger National Park (South Africa) and the Serengeti National Park (Tanzania).

In FY 2001, 74 U.S. graduate students in science and engineering participated in the Summer Programs in Japan, Korea and Taiwan from June through August. Since their start in Japan in 1990, in Korea in 1995, and in Taiwan in 2000, these programs have enabled more than 700 American graduate students to gain first-hand experience in laboratories in those countries. In addition to a research internship, the Summer Programs provide introductory foreign language training, and exposure to science and science-policy infrastructure. The goals of the program are to introduce U.S. graduate students to science and engineering research laboratories in East Asia and to initiate personal relationships that will better enable students to collaborate with foreign counterparts in the future. A long-term goal of the program is to enable the United States to gain maximum benefit from international scientific and technical interactions.

In FY 2003, INT will maintain its emphases on:

  • Encouraging opportunities that provide future U.S. scientists and engineers with international research experiences early in their careers.

  • Fostering collaboration between NSF-supported research centers and equivalent research institutions in other countries.

  • Promoting international networking and connectivity in research and education collaboration through the use of advanced information technology.

  • Developing new types of international research and training experiences, primarily in East Asian countries that are investing heavily in scientific research and are rapidly developing knowledge-intensive economies.

  • Investing in NSF priority science and engineering areas by providing catalytic support for international collaborations in Biocomplexity in the Environment, Information Technology Research, Nanoscale Science and Engineering, Learning for the 21st Century Workforce, the Mathematical Sciences, and the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences.
  Last Modified: Sep 17, 2004


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