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EPSCoR Centers of Research Excellence in Science and Technology (EPSCoR CREST Centers)

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NSF 24-575

Important information for proposers

All proposals must be submitted in accordance with the requirements specified in this funding opportunity and in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) that is in effect for the relevant due date to which the proposal is being submitted. It is the responsibility of the proposer to ensure that the proposal meets these requirements. Submitting a proposal prior to a specified deadline does not negate this requirement.


In alignment with the CREST Program goals, through this solicitation, the CREST Program seeks to expand its geographic diversity and reach by explicitly calling for proposals led by and for efforts in Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) jurisdictions. The U.S. National Science Foundation's EPSCoR program pursues a mission to enhance the research competitiveness of targeted jurisdictions (state, territory or commonwealth) by strengthening science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) capacity and capability through a diverse portfolio of investments from talent development to local infrastructure. For a list of EPSCoR jurisdictions visit https://new.nsf.gov/funding/initiatives/epscor/epscor-criteria-eligibility.

EPSCoR CREST Center awards provide support to enhance the research capabilities of institutions through the establishment of centers that effectively integrate education and research in EPSCoR jurisdictions. EPSCoR CREST Center awards promote the development of new knowledge, enhancements of the research productivity of individual faculty, and an expanded presence of students from EPSCoR jurisdictions in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines.  

Successful EPSCoR CREST Center proposals will demonstrate a clear vision and integration of STEM research and education and will align with the mission of the Division of Equity for Excellence in STEM (EES) with respect to the development of a STEM workforce. EPSCoR CREST Centers are also expected to provide leadership by meaningfully involving the efforts of all individuals in STEM at all levels. Centers are required to use evidence-based and innovative strategies to address workforce development issues, such as recruitment, retention, and mentorship of participants from EPSCoR jurisdictions. Successful proposals are expected to achieve national research competitiveness, broaden participation in STEM, and generate sustained, non-CREST funding from Federal, state, and/or private-sector sources.

Phase I and Phase II EPSCoR CREST Center Awards

Both Phase I and Phase II EPSCoR CREST Center awards provide multi-year support for institutions that demonstrate a strong research base. Phase I EPSCoR CREST Center awards provide funding for five years of research on a specific NSF-supported topic.  Institutions may submit a Phase II EPSCoR CREST Center proposal requesting funding to continue research in the same disciplinary area as the Phase I EPSCoR Center or may submit a Phase I proposal focused on a disciplinary area that is significantly different from those of the previous award(s).

EPSCoR CREST Partnership Supplements

EPSCoR CREST Partnership Supplement requests are invited from current EPSCoR CREST Center recipients. Supplements support the establishment or strengthening of partnerships and collaborations with active CREST Centers and other nationally or internationally recognized research centers (including NSF-supported research centers), private sector research laboratories, K-12 schools, and/or informal science entities, including museums and science centers, as appropriate. Such partnerships and collaborations should aid EPSCoR CREST Centers’ quest in advancing knowledge and education on a research theme of national significance.

Program contacts

Tomasz Durakiewicz
Lead Program Director
tdurakie@nsf.gov (703) 292-4892
Sonal S. Dekhane
Program Director
sdekhane@nsf.gov (703) 292-5029
Regina Sievert
Program Director
rsievert@nsf.gov (703) 292-2808
Nicole E. Gass
Program Specialist
ngass@nsf.gov (703) 292-8378

Awards made through this program

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Map of recent awards made through this program