Senator Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, a prominent member of the committee that regulates NIH, recently issued a long and thoughtful request for ideas as to NIH reform. I just submitted the following: *** The Good Science Project is pleased to submit these comments on NIH reform, as requested by Ranking Member Sen. Cassidy on the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee.
Excellent prescription for systemic change/improvement! 👏 Due to a range of political, professional and economic restraints, little of what you Rx will be implemented. Sad.
The Italian paper referenced here does simulations to show that because luck is more important than talent, evening out research funding (spreading the money around, as the Canadians do) would yield more discoveries.
While I agree completely with all the points made here, your arguments could have been even stronger by including the Department of Energy Office of Science. DOE OS has a similar budget to NSF and funds 70% of physical science research in the US, but it is unfortunately almost always left out of national conversations about federal science funding. Here are a few points of synergy:
* DOE OS also suffers from the issues of peer-reviewed grants and soft money
* DOE OS programs are managed by pairs of permanent staff and 2-year "detailees" from academia (similar to NSF's "rotators")