The Nanoscale Science & Engineering Centers (NSEC) were first created in 2001 with an initial five-year award and were renewed in 2006 for an additional five years. Each year there is an NSF-NSE Grantees Conference (2001-2012). The NSF has funded 19 NSECs, each based at a major research university in the United States, and each of which partners with other universities, industry, and other public and private organizations.