History of Science and Technology Support Retained
At the moment, the threat to the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences (SBE) Directorate of the National Science Foundation (NSF) appears to have abated. Representatives of social science scholarly associations worked hard to educate legislators about the value contributed by the study of human behavior to understanding the technical and scientific implications of larger policy studies.
After defeating a last-minute amendment to transfer $100 million from the NSF to the Department of Veterans Affairs, the House passed on July 31 the VA, HUD, Independent Agencies Appropriations Bill. The NSF emerged from the House floor with the same amount for research as it received from the appropriations committee, and there was no attempt of the House floor to do anything to the SBE Directorate. However, official publication of the House Authorization report from the House Science Committee will include directive and negative language regarding SBE and the social and behavioral sciences.
The Senate appropriations process will begin in September. It is likely that the NSFs reauthorization debate will occur after that.
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