If At First You Don’t Succeed

The four states—Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Dakota—that have just been awarded three-year, $1.8 million grants from the National Science Foundation know what it’s like to try, try again. Each of them has lost out in previous bids to receive funds under a 10-year-old program that is meant to help states at the bottom of the federal research pile do better by improving the quality of their science. “Louisiana is going through so many problems these days that it’s nice to have something good happen to us,” says Gene D’Amour, vice. president for research at Tulane University and chairman of the state’s EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) committee. In Louisiana’s case, the NSF grant is icing on a cake produced by the state’s $20 million annual pledge to provide equipment, staff support, and research funds to scientists throughout the state. In addition...

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