Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release January 21, 2000


Today, the President will announce that his budget will include $4.6 billion for research and education investments at the National Science Foundation (NSF). This represents a $675 million (17 percent) increase over current funding levels. If Congress approves this investment, it would double the largest dollar increase ever for the Foundation, and NSF funding will have increased by 66 percent since President Clinton took office.

Few people recognize the connection between practical improvements in their lives and the fundamental research that NSF has supported for five decades. NSF looks for and funds high-risk research with long-term pay-offs across the entire spectrum of science and engineering -- a role too broad in scope and horizon for mission-oriented government agencies and for private industry. Today we enjoy the benefits of MRI, Doppler radar, and the Internet, because of fundamental research conducted decades ago.

Investing in NSF is investing for future generations. NSF is a small agency with a catalytic ability to speed the pace and scope of discovery in science and engineering. It invests in the people, ideas, and tools needed to keep the nation at the leading edge. The Foundation represents under 4 percent of Federal R&D spending, but supports roughly half of the non-medical basic research conducted at colleges and universities.

NSF's FY2001 request sets priorities and strengthens the core investments that boost economic productivity and secure U.S. S&T leadership.

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