The Czech Science Foundation has succeeded in signing a prestigious cooperation agreement with the National Science Foundation (NSF) government agency of the United States. This is the largest-scale scientific cooperation between the two countries ever. Czech and U.S. scientists will receive funding from both agencies to jointly explore areas such as artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, or plasma.
“Reaching an agreement with the United States is a tremendous success because the NSF is highly selective in its choice of partner agencies. This agreement will make it possible for Czech scientists to work with universities such as Harvard, Stanford, and other research institutions recognised globally,” says Prof. RNDr. Jaroslav Koča, DrSc., President of the Czech Science Foundation.
“It took approximately two years to help establish this cooperation between the Czech Science Foundation and the NSF. It is the largest-scale scientific cooperation between the Czech Republic and the United States ever agreed upon,” says His Excellency, Mr. Hynek Kmoníček, Czech Ambassador to the United States.
This cooperation will help fund basic research projects which have a high application potential at present — artificial intelligence and nanotechnology. Project proposals are also welcome in the areas of plasma, astronomy, astrophysics, and certain humanities.
Calls for project proposals will be made this year already. The agencies will share the costs of individual projects — the Czech Science Foundation will cover the costs of the Czech part of the project, and the NSF will finance the U.S. part.
About the Czech Science Foundation
As the only institution in the Czech Republic, the Czech Science Foundation provides targeted aid using public funds to basic research projects only — the volume of funding was approx. CZK 4.2 billion (U.S.$ 195 million). Through its grants, the Foundation funds scientific projects carried out by seasoned scientists and teams as well as young scientists in their early careers. Each year, the Foundation funds hundreds of scientific projects on the basis of a multi-stage, transparent selection process.
About the National Science Foundation
Established in 1950, the National Science Foundation is an independent agency of the U.S. government responsible for the support of basic research. In 2021, it manages a budget of U.S.$ 8.5 billion, and its grants cover approx. 25% of basic research at U.S. universities. The NSA funds approx. 11,000 projects a year through highly prestigious calls for competitive proposals. Funding from the NSF gave birth to a number of revolutionary technologies of their time. Throughout its existence, the NSA has funded 236 scientists who would later become Nobel Prize winners.