Without research, where would the game of golf be? Research adds to every aspect of the game, from enjoyment to efficiently managing the resources used. Research that is important to superintendents and the courses they keep has always been, and remains, a cornerstone of the Foundation’s efforts, dating back to when it was founded as the GCSAA Scholarship and Research Fund in 1955.

Research Programs

O.J. Noer Research Grant
Purpose: To provide funding for basic turfgrass or related programs' research that incorporates training graduate students for advanced degrees. Basic research applications that benefit golf course superintendents and the golf courses they manage will receive priority ratings, provided other guidelines are met.

Dr. Michael Hurdzan Endowment
Purpose: To fund environmental research on golf courses, including but not limited to: integrated pest management, best management practices, pesticide and nutrient fate, wildlife management or any project relating to protecting the environment. (Preference may be given to projects with matching funds.)

Mark Kizziar Research Grant
Purpose: To fund applied research on turfgrass water use, irrigation scheduling techniques, irrigation water quality or the use of recycled water that will help produce well-conditioned golf courses while minimizing consumption of water. Preference will be given to proposals that address recycled water use and that are conducted in the Southwestern United States. (Preference may be given to projects with matching funds.)

Robert A. Moore Endowment
Purpose: To fund applied research for optimizing the growing environment for golf course turf, while minimizing inputs of water, fertilizer and pesticides. (Preference may be given to projects with matching funds.)

Chapter Cooperative Research Program
Purpose: To cooperate with chapters by providing matching funds for applied agronomic, environmental or regulatory research that has been identified by the chapter as a significant local issue. The goal is to fund research that is important to superintendents. (Preference may be given to projects with matching funds from local chapters, turfgrass foundations or golf associations only.)

Through support provided by the Foundation, GCSAA announced it will fund five new research projects in 2021. Research grants from the GCSAA are supporting five new research projects this year at universities across the country. One new O.J. Noer project, three Chapter Cooperative Research Program projects, one Dr. Michael Hurdzan Endowment project, one Mark Kizziar Research project and one Aquatrols' Robert A. Moore project were funded. The 2021 projects were selected by the GCSAA Research Committee and approved by the GCSAA Board of Directors.

Currently, there are 11 on-going research projects funded by GCSAA for 2021. GCSAA’s research provides solutions to issues golf course superintendents face with the management of their facilities. Funding for the research comes to GCSAA through the Foundation and specifically the generosity of its donors. Research within the golf course industry significantly contributes to the industry’s innovation as well as the leadership and professionalism of the superintendents.

2021 Research Grant Program projects

Investigation of Water Submersion Tolerance of Fine fescues (Festuca spp.) in Comparison to Other Cool-season Turfgrass Species

Aaron Patton, Ph.D., primary investigator at Purdue University, through GCSAA's O.J. Noer Research Grant.

Effects of Plant Growth Regulators on Putting Green Aerification Recovery

Alec Kowalewski, Ph.D., primary investigator at Oregon State University, through GCSAA’s Mark Kizziar Research Grant and Chapter Cooperative grant in collaboration with the Oregon Turf Foundation.

Late-Season Nitrogen Management for Bermudagrass Fairways in the Southern United States

Benjamin Wherley, Ph.D., primary investigator at Texas A&M University, through GCSAA’s Aquatrols’ Robert A. Moore Endowment with matching funds through Texas A&M University Department of Soil and Crop Sciences.

Optimizing the use of annual bluegrass weevil to control annual bluegrass in creeping bentgrass fairways

Albrecht M. Koppenhöfer, Ph.D., primary investigator at Rutgers University, through GCSAA’s Dr. Mike Hurdzan Endowment and Chapter Cooperative grant in collaboration with the New Jersey Turfgrass Foundation, GCSA of New Jersey Foundation, Long Island GCSA, and Metropolitan GCSA.

Understanding False-Green Kyllinga Biology for Integrated Management in Cool-Season Turfgrass

Matthew Elmore, Ph.D, primary investigator at Rutgers University, in collaboration with Aaron Patton Ph.D., at Purdue University, through GCSAA’s Chapter Cooperative research grant in collaboration with the Midwest Regional Turf Foundation, New Jersey Turfgrass Foundation and GCSA of New Jersey Foundation.

The GCSAA Research Grant Program is dedicated to funding applied agronomic, environmental and regulatory research that will benefit golf course superintendents and the golf courses they manage. Submissions for proposals for 2021 will be open June 1-Sept. 13.


  • Sept. 13, 2021 – Proposals due to GCSAA headquarters
  • Sept. 13, 2021 – Support and commitment letters are due
  • Oct. 18, 2021 – Proposals reviewed by the Research Committee
  • Dec. 31, 2021 – Researchers notified of projects approved for funding. Following this notification, all applicants will receive a letter notifying them of their application’s status