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National Science Foundation Strategy

The U.S. National Science Foundation 2022–2026 Strategic Plan describes NSF’s mission, vision, core values, goals and strategic objectives for the next five years. The NSF 2022–2026 Strategic Plan builds on 70 years of NSF driving critical research across all fields of science and engineering and lays out the agency’s vision for the future of discovery and innovation. National Science Foundation Strategy.

Empower STEM Talent

S&E are key to the nation’s economic progress, and people are the core of America’s scientific progress. To accelerate the advancement of discovery and learning, prepare for a world in which work is increasingly reliant upon scientific and technological skills and ensure that all citizens share in the benefits that flow from research, we must promote inclusion in the research community and STEM workforce, access to STEM learning and training and widespread STEM literacy.

Our global competitiveness depends critically on the readiness of the nation’s STEM workforce, but millions of talented individuals are missing from that workforce. NSF seeks to empower these missing millions by making strategic investments in researchers. Research training will harness the talents and creativity of America’s diverse population. We also support research into practical ways to promote a scientifically literate U.S. population. Preparing for the economy and challenges of the 21st century.

The National Science Foundation also supports research into practical ways to promote a scientifically literate U.S. population that is well prepared for the economy and challenges of the 21st century.

Ensure accessibility and inclusivity
Increase the involvement of communities underrepresented in STEM and enhance capacity throughout the nation.

Unleash STEM talent for America
Grow a diverse STEM workforce to advance the progress of science and technology.

NSF supports initiatives that build the STEM-capable U.S. workforce of the future and ensure Americans are prepared to meet evolving workplace demands. NSF partners with academia, government and industry to develop and leverage education and training opportunities, which result in increased levels of STEM employment and job creation. The following are just a few examples of NSF’s varied workforce development portfolio.


The Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier, one of NSF’s 10 Big Ideas, supports fundamental research to advance understanding of how people and technology interact, distribute tasks, cooperate and complement each other in various work contexts. This research will develop new technologies to augment human performance, explore the risks and benefits of these technologies, examine the impact of artificial intelligence on workers and work, and discern the influence of human-technology partnerships on society. New approaches to training and education will yield new information on how adults adapt to emerging technologies and changing work environments.


Advanced Technological Education program improves education of technicians for high-technology industries important to the nation’s economy and security. Most often, these technicians, whose highest level of education is either high school or some college, are prepared for their jobs through associate degree programs in community colleges and related technology programs in secondary schools. In 2016, out of nearly 1.1 million associate’s degrees awarded in the U.S., 9% were in science and engineering and 13% in science and engineering technologies. The Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers supports projects to encourage preK-12 students to participate in the STEM and information and communications technology workforce of the future. Programs heighten awareness of STEM occupations, motivate students to pursue education pathways leading to STEM careers, and develop the reasoning and communications skills to enter the STEM workforce.


A number of NSF-supported programs focus on increasing opportunities for underrepresented populations to pursue STEM careers. Among these programs: NSF INCLUDES, the agency’s comprehensive initiative to broaden STEM participation; the Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, also known as EPSCoR, which fosters STEM training, professional development and research competitiveness in underserved regions of the country; and the Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics program, which provides scholarships for low income, academically talented students who are pursuing two-year, four-year or graduate degrees in STEM fields. The program also provides support to institutions and their partners for activities that encourage student recruitment, retention and career advancement.

Source: National Science Foundation Strategy

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