Montana NSF EPSCoR is a Montana University System (MUS) program focused on stimulating sustainable improvements in Montana's R&D capacity and competitiveness in science and engineering research. We partner with the National Science Foundation EPSCoR (Established* Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) program to develop and manage strategic projects funded by competitive NSF EPSCoR awards to the state. We work collaboratively across the state's higher education institutions, including 7 tribal colleges, and with partners from business, government, and non-profit organizations. With offices at the University of Montana and Montana State University, MT EPSCoR is a program designed to develop, manage, and link projects over time.
NSF EPSCoR was established in 1978, and in 1980 Montana was one of five initial states to participate. Over the years Montana NSF EPSCoR has played an important role in enhancing research capacity and competitiveness for Montana, supporting innovative education for development of Montana's STEM workforce, and linking science outcomes to business opportunities and solutions for pressing issues.
Current NFS ESPCoR RII Track-1 Project
RII Track-1 projects are the core of our work focus. The Consortium for Research on Environmental Water Systems (CREWS) is a five-year, $20M NSF EPSCoR RII Track-1 partnership between the University of Montana, Montana State University, Montana Technological University, Salish Kootenai College, Little Bighorn College, and business and government partners to study Montana’s environmental water systems and specific water quality issues. The PI is Dr. Ray Callaway (UM) and the co-PIs are Dr. Rob Walker (MSU), Dr. Maury Valett (UM), Dr. Jerry Downey (MTech), and Dr. Stephanie Ewing (MSU).
Montana State Science and Technology Plan
Montana NSF EPSCoR is governed by the Montana Science and Technology Committee (MSTC) which is led by the MUS Research Director Janelle Booth. The EPSCoR program is guided by the state Science and Technology plan (2015; the 2011 plan can be found here). Research areas for project proposals are selected on a competitive basis by the MSTC as (1) being one of the most compelling long-term issues for Montana; and (2) having the best potential to improve the future research and development (R&D) competitiveness of the State.
About the NSF EPSCoR program
The mission of EPSCoR is to advance excellence in science and engineering research and education in order to achieve sustainable increases in research, education, and training capacity and competitiveness that will enable EPSCoR jurisdictions to have increased engagement in areas supported by the NSF. EPSCoR goals are:
- to provide strategic programs and opportunities for EPSCoR participants that stimulate sustainable improvements in their R&D capacity and competitiveness;
- to advance science and engineering capabilities in EPSCoR jurisdictions for discovery, innovation and overall knowledge-based prosperity.
See the NSF EPSCoR brochure here: https://www.nsf.gov/od/oia/programs/epscor/EPSCoR_Brochure.pdf
*The American Innovation and Competitiveness Act (AICA) (S. 3084) signed Jan 7, 2017 changed the "E" in EPSCoR from Experimental to Established.