Media Advisory

National Science Board to meet February 4 - 5, 2020 in Alexandria, VA

Meeting kicks off with a joint NSB and PCAST open session

NSB meeting in progress

NSB meeting in progress (Credit and Larger Version)

January 29, 2020


The National Science Board (NSB) will meet February 4 - 5, 2020, to address science and engineering policy issues relevant to the National Science Foundation (NSF). Members of the media and the public are invited to open portions of the meeting, which will also be broadcast live via webcast.

The public meeting agenda is available here.

NSB and the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) will hold a joint open session on Tuesday, February 4 in Room 350 of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. Other meeting highlights—held at NSF—include presentations on the National Solar Observatory Mid-term Review and DKIST construction and future management plans for the SAGE-GAGE Geoscience facilities. 


Open meeting sessions on Tuesday, February 4, 2020


Joint NSB-PCAST Session Open (8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Room 350, Eisenhower Executive Office Building)

Agenda items include discussion of the new PCAST subcommittees and NSB’s recently released 2020 Science and Engineering Indicators.


The rest of the NSB meeting will be held at NSF, Room E-2030

Plenary (2:00 – 3:30 p.m.)

Winners of the NSF 2026 Idea Machine competition will be recognized. In addition, NSF Director France Córdova will give a farewell retrospective.

During Plenary Closed on Wednesday, the NSB will vote on ATLAS and CMS upgrades to the Large Hadron Collider. In Executive Plenary Closed, also on Wednesday, NSF Director Córdova will brief the NSB on the Arctic Research Support and Logistics Services Contract and on the Waterman Award selection.


Open meeting sessions on Wednesday, February 5, 2020


Committee on Awards & Facilities (9:00 – 10:45 a.m.)

Members will discuss the Board’s approval process for NSF’s Mid-Scale Research Infrastructure program. NSF will brief NSB on the National Solar Observatory Mid-term Review and DKIST construction and on the Seismological Facility for the Advancement of Geoscience (SAGE) and Geodetic Facility for the Advancement of Geoscience. NSB members who recently traveled to Antarctica will give brief reports.

During its closed session on Tuesday, the committee will be briefed on an action item on the ATLAS and CMS upgrades to the Large Hadron Collider. Members will also be briefed on a Mid-Scale Research Infrastructure context item that will come before the NSB in May for authorization.


Committee on External Engagement (10:45 – 11:00 a.m.)

NSB Chair Diane Souvaine will report on testifying before the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology at its hearing: “Losing Ground: U.S. Competitiveness in Critical Technologies.”


Committee on Strategy (11:00 – 11:10 a.m.)

Committee members will approve minutes before going into closed session.

Updates on fiscal year 2020 appropriations and the budget process for fiscal year 2021 are on the agenda for the committee’s closed session.


Committee on National Science and Engineering Policy (1:30 – 2:00 p.m.)

Agenda items include a report on the 2020 Science and Engineering Indicators rollout and engagement activities as well as an update on publication of the last 2020 thematic report.


Vision 2030 Task Force (2:00 – 2:30 p.m.)

Task Force members will discuss the draft Vision 2030 document.


Committee on Oversight (2:30 – 3:00 p.m.)

The committee will present the NSB Preface to the Merit Review Digest for approval and referral to the full NSB. In addition, NSF’s Inspector General will report on investigative activities and the 2020 Audit Plan and the agency’s Chief Financial Officer will give a financial update.


Plenary (3:00 – 3:30 p.m.)

NSB members will vote on the NSB Preface to the 2018 Merit Review Digest. Committee chairs will give brief updates as will the NSF Director.


Note: Reporters are invited to attend all open sessions, subject to provisions of the Government in the Sunshine Act.

To attend the joint NSB-PCAST open session, which will be held at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, 1650 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC, please contact PCAST Executive Director Edward McGinnis at (202) 456–6076 or

To attend all other NSB meeting sessions, which will be held at NSF, 2415 Eisenhower Avenue, Alexandria, Virginia, please contact NSB Communications Director Nadine Lymn at (703) 292-2490 or


About the National Science Board

The National Science Foundation consists of the National Science Board and the NSF Director. Jointly the Board and the Director pursue the goals and function of the agency. NSB identifies issues critical to NSF's future and establishes the agency’s policies within the framework of applicable national policies set forth by the President and the Congress. The NSB also serves as an independent body of advisors to both the President and the Congress on policy matters related to science and engineering and education in science and engineering. NSB’s 24 members are appointed by the President for six-year terms and selected for their eminence in research,  education and records of distinguished service.

The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2020 budget of $8.3 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

Useful NSB Web Sites:

Home Page:
Media Contact:
Twitter: Twitter:

To view PDF documents, please download Adobe Acrobat Reader.