Foundation Overview

The EPSCoR/IDeA Foundation (EIF) is a national, non–profit organization aimed at promoting the importance of a vibrant science and technology enterprise, primarily though improving the university research infrastructure and competitiveness of states that historically have received smaller amounts of federal research funding.

Created in 1995, the EIF works with states and agencies that participate in the federally–sponsored Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) and the Institutional Development Award (IDeA) programs. EPSCoR/IDeA are merit–based programs aimed at enhancing the science and engineering research and technology capabilities of states that have not been as competitive in obtaining research and development funding. The National Science Foundation created the first EPSCoR program in 1979 in response to congressional concerns about the geographic concentration of federal funding for academic research and development. Today, EPSCoR, EPSCoR–like, and IDeA programs operate in several federal agencies.

The EPSCoR/IDeA Foundation is governed by a Board of Directors with day-to-day operation carried out by an Executive Director. Dr. Lawrence Cornett, Vice Chancellor for Research at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, serves as Chairman of the Board.


The EIF is dedicated to increasing awareness, visibility and increased participation of the EPSCoR and IDeA states in the nation’s scientific and technological enterprise by:

  • Sponsoring, organizing, developing, and operating educational, scientific, literary, and charitable programs to expand the capacity of the EPSCoR and IDeA states to carry out competitive scientific and engineering research and education, and to institutionalize gains.
  • Serving as an information clearinghouse on the accomplishments and progress of projects and activities of importance to the EPSCoR states.
  • Developing relationships among EPSCoR and IDeA participants, the private sector, government, the national scientific community, and other universities to develop systemic approaches to science and technology improvements in the states.
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