EPSCoR stands for Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research: a National Science Foundation program, created by Congress in 1979, to strengthen research in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and education infrastructure. States that receive a disproportionately low amount of federal research dollars can be EPSCoR jurisdictions. IDeA is a similar program established by the National Institutes of Health in 1991 for biomedical fields.

Nebraska EPSCoR harnesses talent at the state's universities and colleges to compete for merit-based federal funding that supports research infrastructure and capacity building projects. We contribute to the state's workforce development through educational and research opportunities for K-16 students, graduate students and junior faculty, and spur economic development through partnerships with private industry. Nebraska EPSCoR is housed on the campus of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.


The mission of Nebraska's Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) and Institutional Development Award (IDeA) is to

  • build the state's research capacity and competitiveness,
  • invest in workforce development, especially among under-represented groups, and
  • foster public-private partnerships in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (the STEM fields), as well as biomedical research.


A 19-member, governor-appointed state committee guides Nebraska EPSCoR’s policies and priorities. On the committee are leaders from Nebraska's major research institutions, industry, and state government.

Nebraska EPSCoR staff interacts with federal agencies and state institutions to implement strategies and policies established by the State Committee, and conducts the education and outreach elements of its NSF awards.


Nebraska EPSCoR has earned success in forming research partnerships to address scientific challenges to improve quality of life for America and the world. We align Nebraska for research with results that are greater than the sum of the component parts. Since the NE EPSCoR office formed in 1991, these efforts have successfully competed for more than $400 million in federal research funding, including these most recent projects:

Federal Agencies

Nebraska scientists may pursue projects with funding via the following federal agencies. These links connect with the agencies’ EPSCoR, or similarly structured, programs: