[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 152 (Wednesday, August 6, 2008)]
[Page 45792]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-18023]



National Science Board; Request for Public Comment on Use of Cost 
Sharing in National Science Foundation-Funded Activities

ACTION: Notice; request for public comment.


SUMMARY: On August 9, 2007, the America COMPETES Act directed the 
National Science Board (Board) of the National Science Foundation (NSF) 
to ``evaluate the impact of its [2004] policy to eliminate cost sharing 
for research grants and cooperative agreements for existing programs 
that were developed around industry partnerships and historically 
required industry cost sharing, such as the Engineering Research 
Centers [ERCs] and Industry/University Cooperative Research Centers [I/
UCRCs].'' The Act directed that the Board ``also consider the impact 
that the cost sharing policy has on initiating new programs for which 
industry interest and participation are sought.''
    In fall 2007, the Board charged a Task Force on Cost Sharing to 
evaluate the impacts of its 2004 policy on the ERC and I/UCRC programs 
and also on the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research 
(EPSCoR), another NSF program with capacity-building goals. On February 
8, 2008, the Board issued a report to Congress containing several 
recommendations regarding mandatory cost sharing policy at NSF (http://www.nsf.gov/nsb/publications/2008/rprt_congress_cs_policy.pdf ). The 
Board is continuing its study, focusing now on voluntary cost sharing 
and the impact of both mandatory and voluntary cost sharing on 
broadening the participation of traditionally underrepresented groups 
and organizations in federally sponsored research. The Board's intent 
is to release a second, more comprehensive report on NSF cost sharing 
policy in early 2009. Qualitative input from the research community for 
this report will be drawn in part from responses to this notice and 
from two public roundtable discussions held in Arlington, VA on July 9 
and 10, 2008.
    The Board is soliciting public comment regarding community 
experiences in cost sharing with emphasis on the following: (1) The 
relationship between cost sharing and NSF program goals; (2) the 
relationship between cost sharing and institutional competitiveness in 
NSF grant funding; (3) the role of cost sharing in the NSF merit review 
process; (4) the importance of types, sources, and timing of voluntary 
cost sharing; (5) effort associated with tracking and reporting cost-
shared resources; (6) the relationship between cost sharing and 
institutional strategic investment; (7) options for ensuring equity in 
NSF grant funding when cost sharing is either required or volunteered; 
(8) research resources from state providers; and (9) research resources 
from industry providers.
    Full text of questions can be found at http://www.nsf.gov/nsb/committees/cs/comment.jsp. Additional background material about the 
Task Force can be found at http://www.nsf.gov/nsb/committees/tskforce_cs.jsp.

DATES: Comments must be received by October 1, 2008.

ADDRESSES: Comments should be addressed to Jennifer Richards, Executive 
Secretary, Task Force on Cost Sharing, National Science Board Office, 
National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 1220, 
Arlington, VA 22230; telephone (703) 292-7000; FAX (703) 292-9008; e-
mail nsbcostsharing@nsf.gov. Due to potential delays in NSB's receipt 
and processing of mail sent through the U.S. Postal Service, we 
encourage respondents to submit comments electronically to ensure 
timely receipt. We cannot guarantee that comments mailed will be 
received before the comment closing date. Please include ``Cost 
Sharing'' in the subject line of the e-mail message, and your name, 
title, organization, postal address, telephone number, and e-mail 
address in the text of the e-mail message. Please also include the full 
body of your comments in the text of the e-mail message and as an 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jennifer Richards at the addresses 
noted above.

Ann Ferrante,
Writer-Editor, National Science Board Office.
 [FR Doc. E8-18023 Filed 8-5-08; 8:45 am]