The National Science Foundation (NSF) and Science created the Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge to celebrate that grand tradition — and to encourage its continued growth. In a world where science literacy is dismayingly rare, illustrations provide the most immediate and influential connection between scientists and other citizens, and the best hope for nurturing popular interest. Indeed, they are now a necessity for public understanding of research developments: In an increasingly graphics-oriented culture, where people acquire the majority of their news from TV and the World Wide Web, a story without a vivid and intriguing image is often no story at all.
Judges appointed by the National Science Foundation and the journal Science will select winners in each of five categories: photographs, illustrations, informational graphics, interactive media and non-interactive media. The winners will be published in a special section of the September 28, 2007 issue of the journal Science and Science Online and on the NSF website. One of the winners’ entry will be on the front cover of Science. In addition, each finalist will receive a free one-years’ print and on-line subscription to the journal Science and a certificate of appreciation.

Entries must be postmarked by May 31, 2007.