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Credit: NSF/Stephen Voss

NSF INCLUDES is a comprehensive initiative to enhance U.S. leadership in science and engineering discovery and innovation by proactively seeking and effectively developing science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) talent from all sectors and groups in our society.

By facilitating partnerships, communication and cooperation, NSF aims to build on and scale up what works in broadening participation programs to reach underserved populations nationwide.

researcher with microscope
Credit: Systemic Research, Inc.

The current solicitation for NSF INCLUDES (NSF 17-522) describes program goals, contacts, requirements and instructions for those interested in submitting a proposal to NSF for design and development launch pilots.

On September 12, 2016, the first NSF INCLUDES awards were issued to 37 projects. You can read more in this news release.

The NSF INCLUDES Frequently Asked Questions answer common inquiries about proposals.

The NSF Broadening Participation Portfolio provides context for NSF INCLUDES within the agency's portfolio.

For inquiries, please email NSFINCLUDES@nsf.gov or contact program staff listed in the individual funding opportunity description.

Achieving National Scale Impact in Broadening Participation

The impetus behind NSF INCLUDES is that broadening participation in science and engineering is a national challenge that requires national solutions. The approach of NSF INCLUDES is to develop networks and partnerships that involve organizations and consortia from different sectors committed to a common agenda.

These alliances will work to find a solution to a specific STEM inclusion problem that has potential to realize national scale impact on the broadening participation challenge.

The Components of NSF INCLUDES

NSF INCLUDES is specifically designed as a multi-stage, multi-year initiative, as detailed in the NSF INCLUDES program solicitation (NSF 17-522). NSF understands that it often takes years to build effective partnerships and to test and evaluate various approaches. We're conscious of the challenges that projects and partnerships face, including the difficulties of adapting the best approaches for different communities and contexts and measuring their impacts.

• Component one: design and development launch pilots. NSF INCLUDES design and development launch pilots will be engaged primarily in planning activities and laying the foundations for potential partners to share common goals and purposes through collective impact-style approaches.

• Component two: alliances. The NSF INCLUDES alliances will leverage and build on the activities of design and development launch pilots, adding new partners, collaborators, or networks. Each alliance will have its own local communication (backbone) organization.

• Component three: backbone organization. The NSF INCLUDES backbone organization - a central component of the collective-impact approach - will provide increased communications, interoperability, coordination, support, and accountability for the network of NSF INCLUDES alliances. The backbone organization will help drive overarching vision and strategy, align common activities, establish shared measurement practices, build public will, advance policy, and mobilize funding across the network.

NSF INCLUDES and the NSF Broadening Participation Portfolio

NSF INCLUDES is a strategic addition to the NSF portfolio that provides a different approach based on scaling social innovations through collective impact, networked communities, and/or strategic partnerships. NSF INCLUDES will build on and amplify other investments that NSF has made in broadening participation over many decades.