NSB Public Service Award

Honoring Service in promoting Public Understanding of Science and Engineering

NSB is no longer accepting nominations for its 2022 honorary awards. Please return in the summer of 2022 for information on 2023 nomination process. 

Public Service Award The National Science Board (NSB) Public Service Award honors individuals and groups that have made substantial contributions to increasing public understanding of science and engineering in the United States. These contributions may be in a wide variety of areas that have the potential of contributing to public understanding of and appreciation for science and engineering, including: media, education, training programs, and entertainment.

To view previous recipients of the award, visit: Past Recipients of the NSB Public Service Award



Candidates for the NSB Public Service Award should have demonstrated outstanding leadership and accomplishment in meeting the following selection criteria:

  1. Increased the public's understanding of the processes of science and engineering through scientific discovery, innovation, and its communication to the public.
  2. Encouraged others to help raise the public understanding of science and technology.
  3. Promoted the engagement of scientists and engineers in public outreach and scientific literacy.
  4. Contributed to the development of broad science and engineering policy and its support.
  5. Influenced and encouraged the next generation of scientists and engineers.
  6. Achieved broad recognition outside of the candidate's area of specialization.
  7. Fostered awareness of science and technology among broad segments of the population.

Please note that employees of the federal government are not eligible for this award.



Nominations for an individual must include:

  1. A current curriculum vita without publications (no more than 3 pages).
  2. A narrative statement (no more than 5 pages) addressing the following:
    1. the candidate's public service activities in science and engineering, and
    2. the candidate's contributions to public understanding of science and engineering, as they relate to the selection criteria.
  3. Contact information of candidate and nominator (mailing address, email address, phone number).

Nominations for a group must include:

  1. A narrative statement (no more than 5 pages) addressing the following:
    1. the group's activities, and how it accomplishes the selection criteria for the award,
    2. length of years of the program,
    3. number and type of individuals served by the group's activities; and
    4. data on the success of the program, if available.
  2. Contact information of candidate and nominator- mailing address, email address, phone number.
  3. Reference letters are optional - up to 3 letters (no more than to 2 pages each) may be submitted on letterhead.





For questions concerning the awards, please contact Alison Gillespie at nsbawards@nsf.gov, (703) 292-2557.