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bodies should clarify their expectations and meet more often among themselves to coordinate their messages to agencies.

Much has been learned about the procedures of planning, evaluation, and management in the last several years, and some value will have been gained by the agencies from their own discussion of accountability. However, one key remaining question is the degree to which oversight groups are using the results of the “results act” for programmatic decision-making. Unless the agency responses to GPRA are useful to Congress in the urgent task of setting priorities and budgeting, the value of the act might not warrant the time and effort it requires of the federal government. But by working more closely than they have in the past, the federal agencies and the oversight bodies can implement the letter and spirit of GPRA in ways that lead to greater efficiency, lower cost, and more-effective research programs that are demonstrably conducted in the national interest.



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