Volume 43 (2024)

COSSA Releases Preview of FY 2025 House Spending Bills Analysis

In late June, the House Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies (CJS) Subcommittee marked up and reported out their bill that funds the National Science Foundation (NSF), U.S. Census Bureau, National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), and other agencies. The House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) Subcommittee also considered its bill, which is responsible for funding the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other HHS agencies, the Department of Education, and the Department of Labor.  COSSA is preparing a full analysis of the bills, which are being considered by the full…

David E. Campbell Answers “Why Social Science?”

This month’s Why Social Science? post comes from Dr. David Campbell (University of Notre Dame) who discusses how social capital can help make democracy work. Read on for more.

CJS and LHHS Bills Move to House Appropriations Full-Committee Mark-Ups; Senate to Begin Appropriations

As previously reported by COSSA, the House Appropriations Committee has kept to their earlier released appropriations schedule and is expected to finish marking up all twelve of its bills this week. The House Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) bill, which funds the National Science Foundation (NSF), National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), and the U.S. Census Bureau, is expected to be marked up on July 9 (watch live here) and the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS) bill, which provides appropriations for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other…

Supreme Court Overturns 1984 Chevron Decision

On June 28, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the 1984 Chevron decision. The Chevron deference doctrine was established by the ruling in Chevron U.S.A v. Natural Resources Defense Council, and granted federal agencies the ability to interpret ambiguous federal laws. Chevron allowed the federal government increased flexibility in addressing issues relating to many sectors, including the environment, public health, and workplace safety. By a 6-3 majority, the Chevron doctrine was overturned in the Supreme Court’s decision on Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo. The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) released an in-depth statement highlighting the implications of this verdict. With the courts increasingly shifting power…

OSTP Provides Update on Estimated Open Access Publishing Costs

In June, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) released an update to a November 2023 Report to Congress on Financing Mechanisms for Open Access Publishing of Federally Funded Research (see previous COSSA coverage). The report responds to a directive included in the final fiscal year (FY) 2024 appropriations bill requiring OSTP to provide additional information with respect to financing mechanisms for open access publishing of federally funded research, as well as potential impacts of federal public access policies on peer review and research integrity. OSTP provided initial cost estimates to Congress in 2022 and late 2023. This latest report provides: additional information on…

NASEM Pioneers the State of Science Address with President Marcia McNutt

On June 26, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) hosted The State of Science Address, launching the annual discussion on the status of science, technology, engineering, and medicine (STEM) in the U.S. During her opening remarks, President of the National Academy of Sciences, Marcia McNutt, discussed the decline of the STEM workforce and interest in research and development (R&D) in the U.S., including declines in published research articles and the development of high-quality drugs and patents compared to global counterparts, as well as the perceived fall of U.S. global leadership, citing that only eight percent of Americans believe the…

American Statistical Association Releases “The Nation’s Data at Risk” Report

On July 9, The American Statistical Association (ASA), in partnership with George Mason University, hosted a webinar and released a report focused on assessing the health of the principal federal statistical agencies. This webinar provided an overview of the most comprehensive and current assessment of the challenges facing the nation’s most vital statistics and the report detailed the findings and recommendations from the project team. The team assessed the health of federal statistical agencies regarding professional autonomy, support from their parent agency, sufficiency of their budget and staffing, challenges and opportunities for data quality and innovation, and engagement with data…

House Moves on Appropriations Bills Ahead of Fourth of July Recess; CJS and LHHS Bills Expected this Week

As previously reported by COSSA, the fiscal year (FY) 2025 budget process is underway as Congress looks to complete funding bills before the House and a third of the Senate embark on the campaign trail. The House is moving forward with multiple spending bills this week as expected. The House Appropriations committee has already passed six of twelve bills in full-committee, including Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies, Defense, Financial Services and General Government, Homeland Security, Legislative Branch, and State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs. On June 26, the House Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) Subcommittee is…

House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair McMorris Rodgers Releases Framework for NIH Reform

Earlier this month, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), in partnership with the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education (LHHS) Chair Robert Aderholt (R-AL), released a framework outlining potential reforms for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). A one-pager on the framework can be found here as well as an opinion piece written by Chairs McMorris Rodgers and Aderholt. Chair McMorris Rodgers has also announced her intent to not seek re-election this November. The framework comes after a series of recommendations, including Senator Bill Cassidy’s (R-LA) white paper on NIH reform released in May (see previous COSSA coverage) and…

NIH Issues RFI on Draft Public Access Policy

On June 18, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) issued a request for information (RFI) to obtain public comments on the NIH Draft Public Access Policy. The RFI is also seeking feedback on two supplemental draft guidance documents pertaining to government use license and rights, and costs for publications. The draft NIH policy responds to the August 2022 memorandum issued by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) announcing new requirements for federal agencies to make peer-reviewed publications resulting from federal funding freely available to the public immediately following publication. NIH previously sought input into the development of their policy in February 2023….

NCER Opens Applications for Two Competitions

The National Center for Education Research (NCER), a center within the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) in the Department of Education, announced they are seeking applications for two competitions: “From Seedlings to Scale” and “Research Networks Focused on Critical Problems of Education Policy and Practice” (see previous COSSA coverage). Through the “From Seedlings to Scale” program, IES plans to invest in innovative products, policies, and processes within a particular focus area. Their three-phase plan will allow ideas to grow from seedlings to scalable solutions. Applications are now available for Phase One where teams will define a problem, refine a solution, and build…

AAAS Accepting Nominations for 2025 Awards & Prizes

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) announced that nominations are now open for the following awards and prizes: AAAS also sponsors a wide range of other awards and prizes recognizing scientists, engineers, authors, journalists and public servants for significant contributions to science and the public’s understanding of science. The deadline for all nominations is June 30 and award winners will be announced in early 2025. Learn more on the AAAS website. 

PAA to Host Congressional Briefing on “Maternal Mortality in America: Understanding the Challenges and Crafting Population Based Solutions”

On July 22, the Population Association of America (PAA) will host a congressional briefing on “Maternal Mortality in America: Understanding the Challenges and Crafting Population Based Solutions.” The event will feature discussion about the complex social, economic, and health factors contributing to the maternal mortality rate in the U.S. Speakers to include: Dr. Robert Anderson from the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), Dr. Alecia McGregor from Harvard University, and Dr. Amanda Stevenson from the University of Colorado-Boulder. This event will offer a space to explore and address these issues, fostering an informed conversation about the research and potential interventions…

Nominations Open for 2025 Sage-CASBS Award

The Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) at Stanford University and Sage now are accepting nominations for the 2025 Sage-CASBS Award. Both Sage and CASBS are COSSA members. Established in 2013, the Award recognizes outstanding achievement in the behavioral and social sciences that push the boundaries of our understanding of social issues. In addition to a cash prize, the Sage-CASBS Award winner will deliver a public lecture to be held at CASBS in spring 2025. The deadline for nominations is September 16, 2024. More information about the Award can be found here.

John T. Jost and Daniela Goya-Tocchetto Answer “Why Social Science?”

This month’s Why Social Science? post comes from Dr. John T. Jost (New York University) and Dr. Daniela Goya-Tocchetto (University of Buffalo) who discuss political polarization and the future of American democracy. Read on for more.

Congress Works to Complete Appropriations as Scheduled; House-CJS Bill Postponed to Late June

As August recess and the looming November elections rapidly approach, Congress is working on the appropriations process as scheduled. While there has been no movement in the Senate on appropriations bills beyond budget hearings, the House Appropriations committee released a preliminary schedule in May that they have been following closely (see previous COSSA coverage). As expected, the House Appropriations subcommittees for the Legislative Branch, State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs, and Defense bills have progressed as expected with mark-ups. Further, the House has already passed the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Bill in full-committee. As previously reported, the House…

Reps. DeGette, Bucshon Seek Stakeholder Input on Next-Generation Cures Bill

On June 6, Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Representative Larry Bucshon (R-IN) announced a request for input (RFI) from stakeholders on the next-generation Cures bill. As previously reported by COSSA, the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act provided an increase of funding for biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), directed the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve drugs and devices with greater urgency, provided resources to states to assist in fighting the opioid epidemic, and provided a boost for mental health care. In 2021, Rep. DeGette introduced the Cures 2.0 Act to build upon the first but the legislation was never fully passed (see previous…

OSTP Releases RFI on Disability Equity for Data Collection

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has released a request for information (RFI) on the Federal Evidence Agenda of Disability Equity. The RFI is a part of the ongoing efforts outlined in the Presidential Executive Order Further Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government (see previous COSSA coverage). The RFI is intended to influence the Federal Agenda of Disability Equity on topics such as disparities faced by individuals with disabilities as well as areas for improvement and the development of safeguards within federal data collection for individuals with disabilities. A list of the questions asked…

White House Issues Blueprint for Use of Social and Behavioral Science in Policymaking

Last month, the White House released a report promoting better use of social and behavioral science research in evidence-based policymaking across the federal government. This document places a long-overdue spotlight on the social and behavioral sciences and their utility in addressing some of the country’s most pressing challenges. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) released the Blueprint for the Use of Social and Behavioral Science to Advance Evidence-Based Policymaking in May. The blueprint is the product of nearly two years of work by social and behavioral science experts from across federal agencies and departments.  The development of a framework for social…

NCSES To Include Questions about Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity for Survey of Earned Doctorates

The National Science Foundation (NSF) announced its intention to include questions about sexual orientation and gender identity in their annual Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED). The survey collects data on Ph.D. recipients, including gender, race, disability status, educational background, and career plans, and allows researchers and policymakers to track diversity in the U.S. STEM pipeline. NSF released a report, 2024 Survey of Earned Doctorates SOGI Data Collection Experiment Summary, which outlines the process the agency took to come to the conclusion to include questions on sexual orientation and gender identity to modernize the survey. The data collection for SED is expected to begin shortly with…

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