and between science and technology. Complex relationships have evolved among basic and applied science and technology. In most instances, the sequential view of innovation implied by the terms research and development is simplistic and misleading.

The FS&T budget would be more than just a new aggregation of numbers. Its use would enable the federal government to take a comprehensive approach to science and technology budgeting at key phases in the budgetary process. The president and federal agencies should develop a unified science and technology budget based on assessments of scientific priorities, promising new technologies, and national needs. Congress could then examine this budget as a whole before dividing it among the appropriations subcommittees, and it could monitor the science and technology budget as it passes through various budget steps.

This unified approach to science and technology budgets would allow for tradeoffs among agencies, programs, and research institutions. It would enable government to shift funds toward high-priority fields, reduce or close projects that have become less important, and incorporate the results of program and agency evaluations. Particularly in times of fiscal stringency, a unified budget for science and technology would bring coherence to what has previously been a piecemeal approach to policymaking. (B-1)

For more information on the federal funding of science and engineering research:

  • B-1. Allocating Federal Funds for Science and Technology, Committee on Criteria for Federal Support for Research and Development, 1995

Vigilance Is Needed to Ensure the Quality of Research

Beyond the allocation of resources to individual fields of research, how can government ensure that the research that it funds is of the highest quality possible? Government and the research community have distilled what we have learned from experience into several important principles.

First, it is important to maintain the ability to change research directions as circumstances change. The pace of discovery has increased, and the time from discovery to innovation and commercialization is becoming shorter in many fields; this makes the flexibility and responsiveness of the research enterprise increasingly crucial. Indeed, the

Ensuring the Integrity of Research

The reported incidence of misconduct in research is very low, but any misconduct comes at a high price for both researchers and the public. Cases of misconduct in research breach the trust that allows researchers to build on each other’s work, as well as eroding the trust that allows policy-makers and others to make decisions based on scientific evidence and judgment.

Breaches of responsible conduct in research can be divided into three categories: misconduct in research, questionable research practices, and other misconduct. The three types need to be distinguished to avoid counterproductive policies and regulations.

Misconduct in research has been defined as making up data or results (fabrication), changing or misreporting data or results (falsification), and using the ideas or words of another person without giving appropriate credit (plagiarism). Such vague definitions of misconduct as “other serious deviations from accepted research practices” risk the possibility that researchers will be accused of misconduct for using novel or unorthodox research methods, even though the methods might sometimes be needed to proceed in research.

Questionable research practices, which include such actions as inappropriate inclusion of an author in a list of authors or maintaining inadequate research records, can erode confidence in the integrity of the research process and waste time and resources. Researchers and their institutions need to discourage these practices through a broad range of formal and informal means, including education, institutional policies and procedures, and peer review. (C-3) Government’s role in addressing questionable research practices should be to support the efforts of researchers and research institutions to discourage such practices.

Other forms of misconduct are not necessarily associated with scientific conduct and are best handled through generally applicable legal and social penalties.

For more information:

  • Responsible Science: Ensuring the Integrity of the Research Process, Panel on Scientific Responsibility and the Conduct of Research, 1992

  • On Being a Scientist: Responsible Conduct in Research, Second Edition, Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy, 1995

flexibility of the US research enterprise has been one of its great strengths.

To make the research system more responsive to changing opportunities and national needs, government agencies should preferentially fund projects and individual scientists and engineers, rather than institu-



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Science and Engineering Research in a Changing World and between science and technology. Complex relationships have evolved among basic and applied science and technology. In most instances, the sequential view of innovation implied by the terms research and development is simplistic and misleading. The FS&T budget would be more than just a new aggregation of numbers. Its use would enable the federal government to take a comprehensive approach to science and technology budgeting at key phases in the budgetary process. The president and federal agencies should develop a unified science and technology budget based on assessments of scientific priorities, promising new technologies, and national needs. Congress could then examine this budget as a whole before dividing it among the appropriations subcommittees, and it could monitor the science and technology budget as it passes through various budget steps. This unified approach to science and technology budgets would allow for tradeoffs among agencies, programs, and research institutions. It would enable government to shift funds toward high-priority fields, reduce or close projects that have become less important, and incorporate the results of program and agency evaluations. Particularly in times of fiscal stringency, a unified budget for science and technology would bring coherence to what has previously been a piecemeal approach to policymaking. (B-1) For more information on the federal funding of science and engineering research: B-1. Allocating Federal Funds for Science and Technology, Committee on Criteria for Federal Support for Research and Development, 1995 Vigilance Is Needed to Ensure the Quality of Research Beyond the allocation of resources to individual fields of research, how can government ensure that the research that it funds is of the highest quality possible? Government and the research community have distilled what we have learned from experience into several important principles. First, it is important to maintain the ability to change research directions as circumstances change. The pace of discovery has increased, and the time from discovery to innovation and commercialization is becoming shorter in many fields; this makes the flexibility and responsiveness of the research enterprise increasingly crucial. Indeed, the Ensuring the Integrity of Research The reported incidence of misconduct in research is very low, but any misconduct comes at a high price for both researchers and the public. Cases of misconduct in research breach the trust that allows researchers to build on each other’s work, as well as eroding the trust that allows policy-makers and others to make decisions based on scientific evidence and judgment. Breaches of responsible conduct in research can be divided into three categories: misconduct in research, questionable research practices, and other misconduct. The three types need to be distinguished to avoid counterproductive policies and regulations. Misconduct in research has been defined as making up data or results (fabrication), changing or misreporting data or results (falsification), and using the ideas or words of another person without giving appropriate credit (plagiarism). Such vague definitions of misconduct as “other serious deviations from accepted research practices” risk the possibility that researchers will be accused of misconduct for using novel or unorthodox research methods, even though the methods might sometimes be needed to proceed in research. Questionable research practices, which include such actions as inappropriate inclusion of an author in a list of authors or maintaining inadequate research records, can erode confidence in the integrity of the research process and waste time and resources. Researchers and their institutions need to discourage these practices through a broad range of formal and informal means, including education, institutional policies and procedures, and peer review. (C-3) Government’s role in addressing questionable research practices should be to support the efforts of researchers and research institutions to discourage such practices. Other forms of misconduct are not necessarily associated with scientific conduct and are best handled through generally applicable legal and social penalties. For more information: Responsible Science: Ensuring the Integrity of the Research Process, Panel on Scientific Responsibility and the Conduct of Research, 1992 On Being a Scientist: Responsible Conduct in Research, Second Edition, Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy, 1995 flexibility of the US research enterprise has been one of its great strengths. To make the research system more responsive to changing opportunities and national needs, government agencies should preferentially fund projects and individual scientists and engineers, rather than institu-

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Science and Engineering Research in a Changing World tions. (C-1) When the funding commitment is for a specific project of limited duration, the funding in a field can be adjusted relatively easily. To make resources available or reallocate them to meet new opportunities and needs, it is much easier to cut back or eliminate a program of project grants than it is to disengage from the direct support of institutions. Funding people and projects also facilitates the use of independent review to promote the highest quality of work. In making decisions about funding research projects in science and engineering, government agencies should emphasize independent review, preferably involving external reviewers. (C-1, C-2) In allocating federal funds, the government typically has established broad priorities and criteria for the distribution of the funds. Individual projects have been funded on the basis of assessment of their merit, often with advice from peer reviewers outside government (although there are exceptions, such as research conducted for national-security purposes). The government has solicited this advice in the belief that the public interest is best served by letting scientists decide, on the basis of their experience, which research is most qualified for support. Competition for research support, with evaluation of merit by peers, helps to create a diversity of highly motivated funders and performers. If independent external review is not used for a program, other forms of rigorous merit review, such as the methods employed successfully at institutions like the Advanced Research Projects Agency and Bell Labs, should be utilized. The trustworthiness of research results is an integral part of their quality. Traditionally, researchers have relied on each other, on the self-correcting mechanisms intrinsic to the nature of research, and on the traditions of their community to safeguard the integrity of the research process. Yet as research has become more tightly linked to national needs, the accountability of researchers and research institutions supported with public funds has become an increasingly prominent issue. In defining misconduct in research, different government agencies use different definitions, and some of these include ambiguous categories into which unconventional but acceptable research practices could fall. As discussed in more depth in the box on the previous page, government agencies should adopt a common definition of misconduct in research and avoid ambiguous categories, such as “other serious deviations from accepted research practices.” (C-3) Misconduct in science should instead be defined as fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reporting research. Misconduct should not include errors of judgment; errors in recording, selection, or analysis of data; differences in opinions involving the interpretation of data; or misconduct unrelated to the research process. For more information on ensuring the quality of research: C-1. Allocating Federal Funds for Science and Technology, Committee on Criteria for Federal Support for Research and Development, 1995 C-2. Science, Technology, and the Federal Government: National Goals for a New Era, Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy, 1993 C-3. Responsible Science: Ensuring the Integrity of the Research Process, Panel on Scientific Responsibility and the Conduct of Research, 1992 We Should Encourage a Broad Range of Careers for Future Scientists and Engineers Scientists and engineers with PhDs and other advanced degrees play a central and growing role in American industrial and commercial life. They contribute directly to the national goals of technological, economic, and cultural development—not only as researchers and educators, but in a wide variety of other professional roles. And as the country responds to expanded economic competition, urgent public-health needs, environmental degradation, new national-security challenges, and other pressing issues, a widening variety of professions and organizations are hiring the roughly 26,500 people who receive PhDs in science and engineering each year (up from 18,000 a decade ago). Science and engineering PhDs have the qualifications and talents to serve in a broad variety of occupations that will contribute to the economy and society. But a mismatch between the numbers of new PhDs and traditional research-oriented jobs in academe has led to considerable frustration and disappointment among young scientists and engineers. Fewer than one-third of those who received PhDs in science and engineering in 1983–1986 were in tenure-track positions or had tenure in 1991. New PhDs are often spending more and more time as postdoctoral fellows while they wait for permanent jobs to become available. Staff reductions and restructuring in industry and government also have reduced