A monthly message from NSF's Director 
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A Message from the Director of the National Science Foundation
Dr. Cordova

What an exciting month we’ve had at the National Science Foundation (NSF)! The National Science Board met at headquarters in mid-May to discuss a range of science and engineering policy issues relevant to NSF. At the meeting, I had the opportunity to provide an update on NSF’s 10 Big Ideas. Through these initiatives, the agency and the technical community are creating new avenues of collaboration and advancement.

The meeting also featured presentations by 2019 recipients of the Vannevar Bush Award (Walter Massey), the Alan T. Waterman Award (Jennifer Dionne and Mark Braverman) and the NSB Public Service Award (Barbara Schaal). In addition, NSF’s inaugural Diamond Achievement Award was given to the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) project for capturing the first-ever image of a black hole using the EHT. Sheperd Doeleman accepted the award on behalf of the EHT team. For insights into the EHT project, watch this Q&A with two of the team scientists.

May also marks the 69th anniversary of NSF’s launch on May 10, 1950. As the foundation moves into its eighth decade, a special year-long initiative, “Brought to You By NSF,” will celebrate the extraordinary impact of NSF-funded basic research. Each month, NSF’s web site and social media channels, such as Twitter and Facebook, will spotlight the invaluable contributions NSF makes to society. With the agency’s help, scientists and engineers across a wide range of fields sow the seeds of technologies that make our lives safer, more manageable and more prosperous. The first installment, “Game-changing Technologies,” highlights technologies such as smartphones, Google and weather radar.
I hope you’ll follow this informative campaign now and in the coming months to learn about the many ways that the foundation touches each of our lives. NSF is closer than you think!

Dr. France A. Cόrdova
Director, National Science Foundation

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What's Next

May 31 – The NSF 2026 Idea Machine video gallery opens for public comment. The Idea Machine is a competition to gather community input for NSF’s long-term program development. The gallery features entries that have advanced through several judging rounds and are still in the running for the grand prize. The comment period ends June 26.
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