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Capitol Connection

The meaning of 'transformative research'

April 4, 2012 | Authors: Dr. Robert Frodeman, Professor & Director of CSID University of North Texas and Dr. James Britt Holbrook, Assistant Professor, University of North Texas

In early March a two-day workshop was held at the National Science Foundation (NSF) headquarters on the meaning of 'transformative research'. The term encapsulates an increasingly central question across both U.S. and foreign science agencies: in a hyper-competitive global economy, with pressing challenges in many areas (energy, food, water, disease, etc.), how can we do a better job of picking research projects that are true game changers? In terms of NSF, the question is often put in terms of funding transformative research (TR).