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APPENDIX A Trends in Support for Research in the Behavioral and Social Sciences FEDERL4L SUPPORT The major financial support for behavioral and social sciences research comes from the federal government and the operating budgets of doctorate-granting universities. In recent years, the financial circumstances of that research have largely been dominated by dramatic changes in levels of federal support. These changes in support for behavioral and social sciences are starkly different from those for other scientific disciplines, as shown in Figures A-1 and A-2. Federal support for most scientific research has increased substantially in the past IS years, with the value of regular, annual increases modulated by variations in the inflation rate. Considered in constant-dollar terms (that is, adjusting for inflation), the overall level of federal support for scientific re- search, exclusive of the behavioral and social sciences, was 36 percent higher in 1987 than in 1972. Funds for the behavioral and social sciences, in contrast, have followed a roller-coaster-like track. In constant 1987 dollars, federal support declined from just over $1 billion in 1972 to $873 million in 1975, increased to a peak of about $1.1 billion in 1978 and 1979, fell sharply through 1982 to a low of We are pleased to acknowledge the Division of Science Resources Studies of the National Science Foundation for providing unpublished data and other timely assistance in completion of this appendix. 251
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1,100 1,000 gOO 800 700 600 500 400 it_ - \~t dollarS Curr nt dollars', 1972 74 76 78 80 82 Year 1 ~ 1 1 1 84 86 Figure A-1 Trends in federal support for behavioral and social sciences research (constant [19871 dollars). Source: Data from National Science Foundation, Federal Funds for Research and Development. 18 16 14 8 6 4 - Current dollar~' __ Constant dollars . ~ - _' - .' - - 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 86 1972 74 76 78 80 82 84 Year Figure A-2 Trends in federal support for other research (constant [ 1987] dollars). Source: Data from National Science Foundation, Federal Funds for Research and Development. 252
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Appendix A / 253 $705 million, then rebounded somewhat to the current level of $778 million. The 1987 level of support was 2S percent lower than the level in 1972. The $778 million spent in 1987 includes external grants and contracts and internal research activities; about $270 million was classified as basic research and $S08 million as applied research. The total is 4.6 percent of all federal expenditures for basic and applied research (about $16.8 billion). This per- centage is a decline from a figure of 8 percent in 1972 and about 7 percent that was maintained (with some year-to-year fluctuations) from 1973 to 1979. The Diversity of Federal Support Although these highly aggregated numbers are indicative of overall trends, some diversity results from differences in missions and administrative practices among the many federal agencies that support extramural and perform intra- mural behavioral and social sciences research. This diversity affects the ways in which changes in funding levels are implemented and research is adminis- tered. In federal research and development budgets, psychology is classified sep- arately from social sciences, and the psychology classification also excludes neuroscience, which is classified with the life sciences. Basic research and applied research are classified separately, although the latter distinction is in many cases more a matter of the agency's mission than some intrinsic aspect of the research being supported. Figure A-3 shows the source of all federal funding for fiscal 1987, by agency. In estimates of fiscal 1987 spending for basic research in psychology, roughly 60 percent (about $80 million) came from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 26 percent ($36 million) from the U.S. Department of De- fense, and 10 percent ($13 million) from the National Science Foundation. More than 90 percent of support for applied research came from Defense (47 percent, $87 million) and Health and Human Services (44 percent, $81 mil- lion); S percent ($9 million) came from the Veterans Administration. In the social science categories, funding for basic research was more diverse: roughly 28 percent ($39 million) from Health and Human Services, 28 percent ($39 million) from the National Science Foundation, 19 percent ($26 million) from the Smithsonian Institution, 9 percent ($13 million) from the U.S. De- partment of Agriculture, 4 percent ($6 million) from the U.S. Department of Education, and 11 percent ($ IS million) from other agencies. For applied social science research, 26 percent ($82 million) came from Health and Human Services, 20 percent ($70 million) from Agriculture, 20 percent ($64 million) from Education, and sizable though smaller amounts from the U.S. Department of I abor (7 percent, $7 million), independent agencies such as the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (4 percent, $ 11 million), and others (24 percent, $78 million).
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All over agencl" 3.3% NSF 9.8% DHHS~JIH 19.7% / \< Defense \ 26.4% \ -/ DHHS/ADAMHA / 40.8% BASIC PSYCHOLOGY S134.3 MIlllon All over articles 3.~% VA 4.9% ~ ~~ By\ 16.4% ~ . \ DHHS/ADAMHA \ 27.4% \ - \ Defense 47.4% - APPLIED PSYCHOLOGY S184.1 Mlillon ADAMHA Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration DHHS U.S. Department of Health and Human Services EPA Environmental Protection Agency HCFA Health Care Financing Administration HUD U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development ITC International Trade Commission NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration NIH National Institutes of Health NSF National Science Foundation SSA Social Security Administration VA Veterans Administration 2S4
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All other aasncles 4 39` , Education 4.1% ~ ~~~ ~ ~ Agriculture9.3% EPA3.2% Labor 3.3% my\ \ DHHS/NIH 3.4% am\\ \ Analogs 11.396 ;~ ~ 19.2% 1 rDHHS/ \ Secretary, ~ / BASIC SOCIAL SCIENCES NSF 28.59` / $137.5 Mlillon All other ,\;C~o\ agencl" ^,..- W;! DHHS/SSA 3.7% DHHS/Other 2.3% / Education \ 19.8% \ /\ / APPLIED SOCIAL SCIENCES $322.7 MIllion Figure A-3 Estimated federal expenditures in fiscal 1987 for basic and applied research in psychology and social sciences, by federal agency. Source: Data from National Science Foundation, Federal Funds for Research and Development, Fiscal Years 1985, 1986, and 1987.
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256 / Appendix A In short, the Departments of Health and Human Services and Defense ac- count for nine-tenths of federal research funding in psychology, while social science support is more diversified, although Health and Human Services pro- vides one-fourth of all federal funds. The National Science Foundation, with its specific mandate for nonmission- oriented research, has traditionally held a flagship role with respect to the social sciences, and the National Institute of Mental Health (now housed under the Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration) has shared this role with respect to psychology. But there is a strong presence in support of be- havioral and social sciences research in other agencies, including national in- stitutes devoted to aging, alcoholism and alcohol abuse, child health and human development, drug abuse, education, and justice; the Office of Naval Research, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, and the Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences; the Cooperative State Research Service and Economic Research Service of the Department of Agriculture; the Social Se- curity Administration, Health Care Financing Administration, and the Office of the Secretary in the Department of Health and Human Services; the Em- ployment and Training Administration in the Department of Labor; the Vet- erans Administration; and the Smithsonian Institution. Also of great importance are federal agencies whose data collection activities are a foundation for work discussed in this report, especially the Bureau of the Census, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Bureau of Economic Analyses, the Bureau of Justice Sta- tistics, the National Center for Health Statistics, and the National Center for Education Statistics. The diversity of departmental support and the prepon- derance of support for applied research testify to the payoffs gained from earlier investments. National Science Foundation Support The role of the National Science Foundation in federally funded research in universities and colleges is more pronounced than the overall figures cited above suggest, amounting to 25 percent of federal support for psychology and social sciences research on campuses and about 40 percent in the social sciences alone. Thus, changes in the nature and level of program support, while not strictly representative of government-wide action, have a major effect on aca- demic research. At the National Science Foundation, there are presently two divisions rele- vant to behavioral and social sciences research: Social and Economic Science, and Behavioral and Neural Sciences. (A division of Information Science and Technology was transferred in 1985 to the new Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering and was renamed Information, Robotics, and Intelligent Systems; see discussion in Chapter 6.) As the following figures indicate, changes in the real-dollar budget for the Behavioral and Neural Sci-
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Appendix A / 2S7 ences Division (BNS) have affected about equally the overall number of awards given and their average size. But in the Social and Economic Science Division (SES), much sharper changes in the budget have led to much more radical shifts in the size of grants awarded, with surprisingly small effects on the total number of grants. Because grant sizes have been reduced so drastically in SES, in several fields it has become very difficult to initiate new empirical studies. Instead, funds have been concentrated on sustaining relatively long-standing lines of theoretical work and extending a few longitudinal data sets. Along with shifts to smaller grants—substantially smaller in the case of SES— there has been a change in the nature of the research personnel supported. Support for graduate students on research grants has decreased significantly, and faculty scientists receiving salary support through SES and ENS programs in 198S were at salary levels roughly 30 percent higher, even after adjustment for inflation, than the faculty investigators on grants awarded just 3 years earlier. While some above-inflation rise in all faculty salaries has occurred, much of this increase represents a shift toward more research support for higher ranking faculty- or less to lower-ranking faculty than previously. The reduction in average grant sizes has occurred at the same time as major changes have taken place in the capabilities and costs of research equipment. Both the BNS and SES divisions participate in a multiuser equipment program, but the program has not been effective in meeting the overall equipment needs of researchers, partly due to specialized program requirements, partly due to the tendency of review panels to down-rate general-use equipment proposals in favor of individual-investigator proposals, and, as a reaction to these factors, partly due to limited numbers of proposals. The program also does not provide funds for the maintenance and operation of equipment or for hiring and train- ing technical staff. In addition to the reduction in the average grant size, the duration of awards has been shortened, presumably to enable administrators in some programs to maintain a relatively stable number of investigators in the face of declining budgets. But this change has a cost in research productivity because investi- gators more frequently have to write new proposals. This problem is by no means confined to behavioral and social sciences researchers, but it is especially acute for them. There are sound arguments for reversing this trend and moving to increase the duration of awards by 3 to S years, a direction in which some agencies, including the institutes of the Public Health Service, are now moving (see Chapter 65. PRIVATE FOUNDATIONS An important source of funding for the behavioral and social sciences is private foundations. The total of all private foundation support for behavioral
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1,000 800 ~ 600 o Q 400 Ad 200 - - SES _ _ _ _ - 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 Year Figure A-4 Number of grants awarded for the Behavioral and Neural Sciences (BNS) and Social and Economic Science (SES) divisions of the National Science Foundation, 1978-1986. Source: Data from National Sci- ence Foundation, unpublished tabulations. 100,000 90,000 us Do - 80,000 a' - o (, 70,000 ID In ~ 60,000 50,000 _ 40,000 1 1978 1979 1980 1981 \ ~\~_\ 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 Year Figure A-S Average grant size for the Behavioral and Neural Sciences (BNS) and Social and Economic Science (SES) divisions of the National Science Foundation, 197~1986. Source: Data from National Science Foun- dation, unpublished tabulations. 258
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Appendix A / 259 50 45 us so 40 as o ~ 35 o - - E 30 25 20 15 1 1 1 1978 1979 1980 1981 7/ /\ \ SES ~ / - - - - 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 Year Figure A-6 Total grant funding for the Behavioral and Neural Sciences (BNS) and Social and Economic Science (SES) divisions of the National Science Foundation, 1978- 986. Source: Data from National Science Foun- dation, unpublished tabulations.
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260/Appendix A and social sciences research is now about $60 million, or 8 percent of the amount received from the federal government. From the early 1920s until about 1960, private foundations were central in supporting behavioral and social sciences research; indeed, they were the principal providers of funds prior to the rapid growth of the federal presence beginning in the late l9SOs. But private foundations were made subject to federal taxes during the 1960s, and sub- stantial reductions occurred in the value of the awards they were able to give. Additionally, several very large foundations decided in the late l950s and early 1960s to withdraw substantially from the support of basic research in favor of applied research and program development. The role of the private sector thus changed from being an across-the-board presence in the behavioral and social sciences to providing limited support along selective program lines. Particularly notable are the Russell Sage Foun- dation (recently specializing in research on gender, legal processes, risk per- ception and management, and behavioral economics), the Sloan Foundation (cognitive science, economics), the Rockefeller Foundation (population, de- velopment), and the MacArthur Foundation (health and behavior). Although private foundations provide short-term selective program funding that injects significant resources for limited periods, they do not provide long-term com- mitment for the range of resource requirements needed to address many be- havioral and social sciences research problems.
Representative terms from entire chapter: