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National Science Foundation - Celebrating 50 Years
History

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History of NSF


capital Penicillin, the proximity fuze, the atom bomb, among a host of other scientific contributions to American victory in the Second World War, brought home to many citizens the value of scientific research. In the continuing crisis after the war, there were few who opposed the proposition that sustained Federal support of science and research was essential to the defense and welfare of the United States."

"By the National Science Foundation Act of 1950 the Congress established the National Science Foundation to promote the progress of science; to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare; to secure the national defense; and for other purposes.' The President approved the act on May 10, 1950."

NSF's first location
The National Science Foundation's first location at 901 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC.

Excerpt from The First Annual Report of the National Science Foundation, 1950-51

Most NSF Annual Reports are available online at http://www.nsf.gov/od/lpa/news/publicat/annualreps.htm.


SCIENCE THE ENDLESS FRONTIER
A Report to the President by Vannevar Bush
Director of the Office of Scientific Research and Development, July 1945
(United States Government Printing Office, Washington: 1945)

ADDRESS TO THE CENTENNIAL ANNIVERSARY AAAS
President Harry S Truman's September, 1948 speech
to the Centennial AAAS Annual Meeting in Washington, DC.
This speech is credited with giving rise to NSF's creation.

STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS
Excerpt from the Address Delivered by President Harry S Truman
on January 4, 1950

THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION: A BRIEF HISTORY
A Report by George T. Mazuzan, Former NSF Historian
Office of Legislative and Public Affairs , July 15, 1994
(General Publication, NSF8816, 1994)

INVENTING US SCIENCE POLICY
By William A. Blanpied
Reprinted with permission from William A. Blanpied, "Inventing US Science Policy,"
Physics Today, 51(2), February 1998, pp 34-40.
Copyright 1998 American Institute of Physics

THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION CLASS OF 1952
William A. Blanpied
Division of International Programs
National Science Foundation

KEY HISTORICAL DATES
Important dates in the history of the National Science Foundation.

THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION BY THE NUMBERS
Selected data showing NSF's size and impact.


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Last Modified: Apr 20, '04