Research funding bill made less awful, but still guts social sciences

Last year around this time, the US House Science Committee was considering a bill that would force the National Science Foundation to reconsider its funding priorities. The Foundation has been tasked with funding basic research, but the bill would have directed it to only fund science deemed to be in the national interest—things like research with defense applications or with obvious economic outcomes.

Yesterday, the committee put the final touches on this year’s version of the bill, and in a bit of good news, some of the more problematic language was gone. Although the current bill still wants the Foundation to perform “investment in strategic areas vital to the national interest,” the actual funding requirements it stipulates provide the NSF with a broad leeway in interpreting the national interests. Grants can go to programs that aid in the “development of a STEM [science, technology, engineering, and math] workforce and increased public scientific literacy” or the “promotion of the progress of science.”

But the Committee still wants to be able to blame someone if a grant it doesn’t like gets funded, as it added a requirement that an NSF official provide “written justification” for any grants that are awarded.

Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

from Ars Technica » Scientific Method http://ift.tt/1trlAtc
via IFTTT

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s