Table 3 shows the increasing number of awards from 1992 to 2000 that would fulfill our estimate of minimal needs for research and training support. The 1,500 grants shown for the first year approximate the grants that would be active at that time; approximately 1,300 are now active. The first-year sum encompasses approximately $150 million already in the budgets of the agencies listed in Table 2. Most of the increment arises from our proposal that the size of grants be increased substantially and that training and other program elements be implemented. Incremental growth in the research grant category as well as in other categories is based on conservative estimates of growth. For example, 10 departments would receive training grants in the first year to support about 15 predoctoral students each. The number of departments with training grants is projected to increase rapidly for the first several years and then level off as the new programs mature.
The progressive increase in the number of awards in the period until the year 2000 shown in Table 3 is the first phase of the program, and it provides a period to test the effectiveness of the program and to adjust it as needed. We anticipate that the program will continue to grow after the year 2000 beyond the figures shown for that year.
We consider that the program presented here constitutes the minimum effort necessary to ensure U.S. leadership in plant-biology research into the next century.