Executive summary

This document represents EWCP’s vision for the achievable scientific and technological advancements that we expect will be made within the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) community within the next five years.

This open-source research agenda is primarily developed by members of EWCP, a group of current and former FIRST adult participants, through discussion with peers in the FIRST community and with professional colleagues. EWCP’s mission is to develop the sustainability of competitive youth STEM teams and strengthen the diversity, robustness, and impact of the youth STEM education community through strategic advocacy, expert consensus-building, and technical leadership.

Need for this document

EWCP envisions a greater coordination among the FRC community of competitors in our individual efforts to create earned knowledge.

The FIRST Robotics Competition provides a space for students and technical professionals to co-investigate difficult, exciting problems in STEM. The most compelling of these problems are the unsolved ones located at the cutting edge of our field. In exploring that cutting edge, teams have the motivating opportunity to eke out a competitive advantage. Ideally, this competitive advantage felt fleetingly by an individual team will rapidly evolve into an overall increase in the body of knowledge permanently accessible to all teams.

We wish to reverse what we currently feel is an insufficient emphasis on citizen-science in FRC. In particular, we regret the loss of the small but engaged community that had been built up around the cd-media section of ChiefDelphi prior to the forum’s switch to Discourse. While the FIRST Championship Conferences provide a good opportunity for networking and exchange of thought, the conferences are limited in their accessibility and their scientific value. Finally, we lack an academic journal specifically serving the youth competitive STEM community.

We believe that the EWCP FRC research agenda, and the discussions it will spark, will invigorate our community at a unique time when teams are returning to their workshops and re-opening lines of inquiry that had been dormant during COVID. And of course, we hope to inspire new researchers to explore these and related topics as they begin their exciting journeys in STEM.

Goals of this document

This research agenda is intended to:

  1. Build consensus among community experts as to the current state of the cutting edge of FRC

  2. Develop an intentional approach to the future advancement of the cutting edge

  3. Support teams in their work, especially:
    • identifying and celebrating teams serving a thought-leadership role
    • improving coordination between competitors, which can reduce wasted effort while allowing room for competitive advantage
    • helping teams understand where their innovation and invention fit within a larger context
    • providing basis for statements about the relative priority of certain research
    • supporting teams in their efforts to seek funding for research
  4. Generally promote scientific thought, especially with regards to:
    • indigenous knowledge that may no longer represent the best practice
    • information originating from FIRST and FRC suppliers

How to contribute

EWCP welcomes your contributions to this Github repository.

The EWCP FRC Research Agenda




Other mechanical


Other areas of research interest

  • CAD
  • Networking
  • 3d printing