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Foreword by Walter Cronkite  
Introduction - The National Science Foundation at 50: Where Discoveries Begin, by Rita Colwell  
Internet: Changing the Way we Communicate  
Advanced Materials: The Stuff Dreams are Made of  
Education: Lessons about Learning  
Manufacturing: The Forms of Things Unknown  
Arabidopsis: Map-makers of the Plant Kingdom  
Decision Sciences: How the Game is Played  
Visualization: A Way to See the Unseen  
Environment: Taking the Long View  
Astronomy: Exploring the Expanding Universe  
Science on the Edge: Arctic and Antarctic Discoveries  
Disaster and Hazard Mitigation
About the Photographs  
About the NSF  
Chapter Index  
Disasters and Hazard Mitigation: Living More Safely On a Restless Planet

A Safer Future

In recognition of the rising dangers and costs associated with natural disasters around the world, the United Nations declared the 1990s the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction. At the close of the decade, NSF could look back on fifty years of sponsored programs whose aims have been—and continue to be—to better understand and prepare for the kinds of extreme natural events that can prove disastrous for human communities. While we can never be absolutely safe, its human inhabitants can at least rest easier in the knowledge that nature's violence holds less sway in an age where scientists and engineers are working so closely together to mitigate what cannot be controlled.

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The Forces Underlying the Fury
Reducing the Risk
Hot Heads
Stormy Weather
Trustworthy Tools
El Nino Bears Unwanted Gifts
A Safer Future
Climate Change--Disaster in Slow Motion
How's the Weather Up There?
The Human Factor
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