5.5 OTHER PERCEPTIONS

There were other concerns raised by the Space Studies Board's discipline committee members that were not addressed by the task group's budget data. For example, scientists are concerned about shorter-duration missions, which may require investigators to seek funding for mission extensions through the R&DA programs. Members of the community also argue that NASA research announcements (NRAs) focus heavily on particular missions and data, thereby reducing a program's flexibility to fund cross-disciplinary research. In addition, some scientists perceive a lack of science-driven technology programs and reduced support for science facilities, such as high-altitude aircraft and suborbital platforms. Finally, members of the external community are concerned about difficulties in attracting the best talent to graduate programs. They sense that the decreasing employment opportunities for Ph.D. scientists limit the ability to attract innovative thinking to NASA-funded sciences. Although some of these concerns have been discussed earlier in this report, they are not particularly illuminated through analysis of funding data.



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