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The National Science Foundation (NSF) is taking a systemic view of the management agenda, understanding that the five management initiatives are intrinsically linked. NSF is the government-wide leader in Financial Management and Expanding E-Government and is making progress in Human Capital. However, its performance in the Competitive Sourcing and Budget and Performance Integration lags behind its other efforts.

Initiative Status Progress

Human Capital — NSF has made significant progress in the Human Capital initiative. It established the NSF Academy for ongoing staff training and issued revised senior executive performance management objectives to measure executives’ performance against the goals set out in NSF’s strategic plan.

Competitive Sourcing — NSF has made no progress in Competitive Sourcing. The agency has decided not to compete any of its commercial positions at this time and has not developed a competitive sourcing plan.

Financial Performance — NSF continues to be the agency leader in financial performance. NSF has conducted 15 pilot reviews of its research grant awards as part of its new grant monitoring activity to ensure that NSF funds are used for their intended purposes.

Enhancing E-Government — NSF achieved green status in E-Gov, joining its green status for financial performance. It did so by making significant progress in fixing identified information security problems.

Budget/Performance Integration — NSF has been slow in addressing the Budget and Performance Integration initiative. The agency has only recently submitted a draft plan on how to implement this initiative. The first significant step will be to revise its strategic plan by March 2003.

arrows indicate change in status since baseline evaluation on September 30, 2001.

Program Assessments

Two NSF programs were reviewed using the Program Assessment Rating Tool (PART): one for activities under NSF’s “Tools” strategic goal and one for its Geosciences directorate. These reviews showed that NSF programs have a very clear purpose and good management practices, but that their annual goals may not be that useful in measuring performance. For this year, the PART score reflects acceptance of the performance measures and the results they indicate. The Administration will develop better annual goals for the 2005 Budget.
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