EPSCoR Criteria for Eligibility

A jurisdiction is eligible to participate in the U.S. National Science Foundation's EPSCoR program if their most recent five-year level of total NSF funding is equal to or less than 0.75% of the total NSF budget (excluding EPSCoR funding and NSF funding to other federal agencies). 

Jurisdictions that have been established in the EPSCoR program and whose share of total NSF funding is above 0.75% but less than 0.80% are allowed to remain EPSCoR-eligible for up to five years.

The data used for eligibility calculations are reported by the NSF Office of Budget, Finance and Award Management and listed on NSF's Budget Internet Information System.

Eligibility tables

Planning grants for new jurisdictions

New EPSCoR-eligible jurisdictions may apply for planning grants. Here, a "new" EPSCoR eligible jurisdiction is defined as a state, U.S. territory or U.S. commonwealth that previously did not qualify via the established 0.75% criterion but is declared eligible under the most recent publication of the annual NSF EPSCoR eligibility list. Planning grant proposals can be submitted at any time following a declaration of eligibility.

Eligible jurisdictions can use planning grants to formulate a documented vision and implementation design for their research, education and innovation strategies. An expected outcome from any supported planning activity is the submission of regular NSF proposals that combine capacity building with enhancing the capability to address bold opportunities of regional relevance and national importance.

A jurisdiction wishing to submit a planning grant proposal must first notify NSF EPSCoR with a letter of intention to submit and then meet with NSF EPSCoR officials to discuss the project concept, potential partners and estimated cost. Depending on the outcome of these discussions, a jurisdiction may be invited to submit an EPSCoR planning proposal following NSF's grant proposal guidelines.

EPSCoR, on a case-by-case basis, may consider support for other types of planning activities, such as EPSCoR workshops, conferences and other community-based activities.