U.S. Geological Survey 21st-Century Science Strategy 2020–2030

Circular 1476



Today’s Earth system challenges are far more complex and urgent than those that existed in 1879 when the USGS was established. Society’s greatest challenges are directly or indirectly linked to major areas of USGS science. Increased pressures on natural resources continue with consequences for national security, food and water availability, natural disasters, human health, and biodiversity loss. As we look forward 10, 20, and 30 years, our mission will be more important than ever before. A broad but coherent view is required for stewardship of the Nation’s land, water, mineral, energy, and ecosystem resources, which involves complex tradeoffs among multiple, often competing objectives. Increasingly, resource managers and decision makers need “the whole USGS”:

  • integrated multidisciplinary Earth and biological science data,
  • geospatial tools,
  • predictive models,
  • decision-support tools, and
  • the expertise to interpret them.

This Science Strategy defines a vision and mission for how we will continue to evolve USGS Science to address these Earth system challenges.

Suggested Citation

U.S. Geological Survey, 2021, U.S. Geological Survey 21st-Century Science Strategy 2020–2030: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1476, 20 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/cir1476.

ISSN: 2330-5703 (online)

Table of Contents

  • Foreword
  • Introduction
  • USGS Mission and Vision
  • Challenge and Opportunity in the 21st Century
  • Achieving Our Vision
  • Strategic Planning Framework
  • Core Values
  • References
Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title U.S. Geological Survey 21st-Century science strategy 2020–2030
Series title Circular
Series number 1476
DOI 10.3133/cir1476
Year Published 2021
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Office of the Director USGS
Description v, 20 p.
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details