Within a field (as defined by NSF division) or interdisciplinary area: scientific and technical criteria, such as scientific breakthrough potential and technological readiness.
Across a set of related fields: agency strategic criteria, such as balance across fields and opportunities to serve researchers in several disciplines.
Across all fields: national criteria that assess relative need—such as which projects maintain US leadership in key scientific and engineering fields or enable the greatest numbers of researchers, educators, and students.
See box below for a more in-depth discussion of the proposed criteria.
Criteria for Developing Large Facilities Roadmaps and Budgets
Overlapping categories of criteria should guide the preparation of the large facilities roadmap and NSF’s annual budget submissions. As shown in Figure 1, scientific and technical quality must be at the core of these criteria. Because these are large facility projects, they must have the potential to have a major impact on the science involved; otherwise, they should not reach the next step.
The rankings show what we would expect to happen first within a field, then within a directorate of NSF, and then across NSF. The criteria from earlier stages must continue to be used as the ranking proceeds from one stage to the next.