U.S.-Russian cooperative projects. Thus, this report relies in large measure on their personal observations, supplemented with views of a number of research managers in the two countries, in reaching conclusions as to the importance and shortcomings of various approaches to cooperative research in the biological sciences. While the significance of different research activities varies greatly, joint efforts have contributed in a variety of ways to advancing science, to strengthening the scientific infrastructure of Russia during a critical economic period for the country, and to setting the stage for future collaborative efforts.
The majority of cooperative research activities have been carried out in Russia, with significant financing by U.S. organizations. However, U.S. support of Russian-based research projects that were justified in the first instance on the basis of countering proliferation has almost vanished. Current plans of the two governments indicate additional reductions of cooperative research, however justified, are in the offing. As a positive trend, on the other hand, more even balances in the funding and location of joint activities are receiving serious consideration.
In particular, U.S. funders are increasingly reluctant to cover Russian salaries and equipment to be used for research at Russian institutions, given the improved financial situation in Russia. At the same time, a small but steady influx to the United States of Russian researchers invited to be temporary researchers at National Institutes of Health (NIH) facilities, U.S. universities, and other research settings in the United States will undoubtedly continue. But the magnitude of these types of support from U.S. programs is not great. For example, in recent years, less than 2 percent of NIH grants that were awarded to foreign scientists were given to applicants from Russia.
The recent decline in U.S. financial support for collaborative efforts has been disappointing for some researchers from both countries, particularly for those who have benefited from past cooperation but are no longer successful in finding support for continuing their collaborations. While the researchers in the two countries may have interesting ideas for future cooperation, current and anticipated budget reductions mean that some potentially valuable programs will not go forward. But judging from past experience, the impact from even a reduced number of activities that are jointly designed, successfully pass through peer review, and are then implemented should be substantial.
MOTIVATIONS FOR COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH
In past years, officials in the two countries dealing on a daily basis with proliferation issues were interested in involving former Russian defense-oriented scientists in high-quality, civilian-oriented research activities for at least two reasons. First, permanent redirection of scientists from defense-oriented to civilian careers requires their establishment of personal scientific reputations within the civilian research community so that the redirected scientists will be able to compete successfully for funding from many sources over the long term. Second, a