In 1980, the National Science Foundation (NSF) established the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR).
The EPSCoR program is designed to assist states to establish a self-sustaining academic research enterprise with the competitive capability that will contribute to the states’ economic viability and development.
SD EPSCoR’s mission is to strengthen research and education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) across South Dakota to increase science literacy and drive science-based economic development.
The program helps build South Dakota’s research infrastructure and increases its capacity to successfully compete for federal funding. Today many federal agencies have developed a similar program including NASA, DOE, DoD, NIH, etc.
Current goals of South Dakota EPSCoR include:
•Increase South Dakota’s Science and Technology Research Capacity
•Provide educational opportunities for k-12, undergraduate, and graduate students
•Promote Science Based Economic Development for South Dakota
SD EPSCoR also focuses on building collaboration between public, private and tribal colleges and universities, state government and businesses across the state. These collaborations help support the state’s economic and workforce development.
SD EPSCoR was established in 1985 and received its first award in 1989 for $1.8 million. In the last five years, SD EPSCoR and EPSCoR-like programs have brought more than $55 million of research funding into the state used to help hire new faculty, purchase major pieces of research equipment, train graduate and undergraduate students, and strengthen STEM programs in higher education.