2021 National Science Foundation (NSF) Survey

Due Wednesday, December 1, 2021
Biennial NSF Survey of Science & Engineering Research Facilities Purpose
  • Congressionally mandated survey since 1986
  • The primary source of information on the amount and cost of space at science and engineering (S&E) research facilities located at U.S. research-performing colleges and universities
  • The basis of public data used by Congress, higher education associations, state governments, academia, and architectural and engineering firms
Key data variables of interest:
  • Amount and type of science and engineering research space
  • Condition of research facilities
  • Amount of shared research space
  • Amount, condition, and bio-safety level of animal research space
  • Cost of repair/renovation/new construction projects
Results to be disseminated by National Science Foundation  
Research Square Footage (per NSF parameters)
Research Space Includes:
  • Research Labs, including support spaces
  • Instructional Labs also used for research
  • Computer Labs or other departmental space used for research
  • Controlled-environment space, such as clean/cold/white rooms
  • Technical support space, such as prep rooms, carpentry/machine shops
  • Research animal space, including housing and associated maintenance areas
  • Offices, to the extent they are used for research activities, including administrative activities for a specific research project
  • Leased Space used for research
  • Research space used for clinical trials
  • Other space used to some extent for research
Research Space Does NOT Include:
  • Space used by the following fields is not included as part of this survey:
    • Law
    • Business Administration/Management
    • Humanities
    • History
    • The Arts
    • Education
  • Space in use by Federally Funded Research & Development Centers
  • Libraries (unless dedicated to a specific research project)
  • Animal Field Buildings sheltering animals not in direct support of research
  • Space used by Faculty, Staff or others but administered by other organizations (i.e. Non-University Hospitals or Veterans Hospitals)
  • Outdoor areas such as ponds or fields
Science and Engineering (S&E) Fields:
  • Agricultural Sciences, Animal Sciences, Plant Sciences, Veterinary Sciences, and Related Fields
  • Animal Space
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences
  • Computer and Information Sciences
  • Engineering
  • Geoscience, Atmospheric Sciences, and Ocean Sciences
  • Health Sciences
  • Mathematics and Statistics
  • Natural Resources and Conservation
  • Physical Sciences (Includes Astronomy, Chemistry, and Physics)
  • Psychology
  • Social Sciences
  • Other Science and Engineering Fields (Multidisciplinary/Interdisciplinary)
Condition of Research Facilities:
At the end of FY 2021, what percentage of the research space reported fell into each of the four condition categories below? Include research animal space.
  • Superior condition - Suitable for the most scientifically competitive research in this field over the next 2 years (FY 2022 and FY 2023)
  • Satisfactory condition - Suitable for continued use over the next 2 years (FY 2022 and FY 2023) for most levels of research in this field, but may require minor repairs or renovation
  • Requires renovation - Will no longer be suitable for current research without undergoing major renovation within the next 2 years (FY 2022 and FY 2023)
  • Requires replacement - Should stop using space for current research use within the next 2 years (FY 2022 and FY 2023)
The space information to be included in the survey for each college or agency is available on the current data sheets page, linked at the top of this page.
For reference purposes, responses from the FY2019 survey are also available, also linked at the top of this page.

Public Release of Data
  • A majority of the 2021 Survey Data will be made public
    • Peer Institutional Comparisons will be possible
  • Portions of institutional data will NOT be made public (but aggregate totals of this data will still be published). This includes:
    • Animal Space responses
    • Reports on the condition of space
What's Next?
  • Review Space Listing
  • Evaluate Condition of Space by Department
  • Email Responses to the Space Information Office at nsfspace@tamu.edu
  • Responses due no later than December 1, 2021
For questions, please contact:
  • Ginger Urso, Data Analyst, Space Information Office
  • Janet Killion, Director of Research Reporting, Division of Research