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News Forecast: Expect Headlines on U.S. R&D Budget,
OMB Peer Review, and More at 29th S&T Forum
AAAS analyst Kei Koizumi, director of the authoritative R&D Budget and Policy Program, will unveil a new, five-year budget outlook for federally funded U.S. research and development to help kickoff the 29th Annual Forum on Science and Technology Policy.
"The current U.S. Administration wants to cut the budget deficit in half over the next five years," Koizumi noted. "Particularly during a Presidential election year, it's important for policymakers and taxpayers to understand the impacts of any federal budget changes, especially any proposals that may have implications for the pace of scientific discoveries in coming years."
Other headlines at the Forum (formerly known as the Colloquium), 22-23 April, are expected to emerge from presentations by John D. Graham of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and by U.S. Presidential Science Advisor John H. Marburger III.
Graham is head of the OMB’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, which published draft guidelines on 15 September, 2003, governing peer review by U.S. federal agencies. In a 12 December letter to OMB, the AAAS Board of Directors and CEO applauded the intent of the proposed guidelines for recognizing independent peer review as a “critical element in ensuring the reliability of scientific analyses.” But, the AAAS statement also criticized sections of the draft guidelines that relate to the selection of peer reviewers, the public disclosure of reviewers’ identities, and the authority to waive the proposed requirements in certain cases. (Read the AAAS statement)
Marburger, who will deliver the keynote address at the 2004 Forum, is director of the U.S. White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. At the 2003 Forum, Marburger candidly addressed visa-processing delays resulting from tightened U.S. security measures. "This Administration values the contributions that foreign students make," Marburger said. He identified a series of steps to encourage multi-national research contributions by applicants. (For more details on Marburger's 2003 Forum presentation, read the related news article.)
New voting technologies, regulatory control of the Internet, and other questions related to technology's impacts on democracy also may result in news coverage of the 2004 Forum. In addition, Albert H. Teich, director of Science and Policy Programs at AAAS, will chair a session on the impacts of post-9/11 security policies on science.
The AAAS Forum is held in Washington each spring to provide a neutral setting for discussion and debate about budget and other policy issues facing the S&T community. Since its beginning in 1976, the Forum has grown into an annual institution that draws over 500 top science and technology policy experts. The Forum is the major public meeting in the United States on science policy issues.
For full program details, or to register now, see http://www.aaas.org/forum.
The Forum is held in conjunction with an Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Conference, set to take place 23-25, 2004. The student event, which is free and open to the public, includes a science-policy career workshop, career fair, scholarly presentations, and more.
For details on the graduate student event, see http://www.gwu.edu/~cistp/stglobal/
05 March 2004
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