Wednesday, July 19, 2017

New Report Concludes Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences Help Advance National Health, Prosperity and Defense

National Science Foundation News Release
July 18, 2017


At the request of the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine has produced a report, "The Value of Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences to National Priorities." The report concludes that social, behavioral and economic sciences (SBE) further NSF's mission to advance U.S. health, prosperity, welfare and defense.
"Nearly every major challenge the United States faces -- from alleviating unemployment to protecting itself from terrorism -- requires understanding the causes and consequences of people's behavior," the report says.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

House Republicans Counter Trump on University Research Costs

The Chronicle of Higher Education
Paul Basken
July 12, 2017

House Republicans issued a fiscal 2018 budget plan on Wednesday that rejects the Trump administration’s proposal to eliminate or sharply cut so-called indirect-cost payments to universities for medical research.
The plan, offered by Representative Tom Cole, Republican of Oklahoma and chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee that oversees the National Institutes of Health, makes clear that indirect-cost payments on NIH grants should continue "to the same extent and in the same manner" as has existed.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Europe's Next Big Science-Funding Programme Urged to Double Its Budget

The Chronicle of Higher Education
Paul Basken
July 4, 2017


Midway through the European Union’s sprawling 7-year, €75-billion (US$85-billion) research-funding programme known as Horizon 2020 (H2020), scientists are already angling for more money and less red tape in its successor.
So researchers are delighted with an influential 3 July report that urges the EU to double the budget of its next funding scheme, called Framework Programme Nine (FP9), which is due to launch in 2021. The report says that FP9’s structure should be largely similar to that of H2020, but with less bureaucracy, and suggests that it includes a few major ‘moonshot’ missions in areas such as energy and information technology. 
Read More…

Thursday, June 29, 2017

A New Theory on How Researchers Can Solve the Reproducibility Crisis: Do the Math

The Chronicle of Higher Education
Paul Basken
June 28, 2017

From the beginning, it seemed like a difficult prediction.

In an article published last October in Nature, three researchers affiliated with the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City said they had crunched the numbers and concluded that humans will never consistently live much beyond 115 years.

"From now on, this is it," one of the three authors, Jan Vijg, a professor of genetics at Albert Einstein, told The New York Times one of several major news outlets that helped promote the sobering news. "Humans will never get older than 115."

Read More…

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Universities Are Getting a Lesson in the Value of Early Training to Apply for Grants

The Chronicle of Higher Education
Paul Basken
June 27, 2017

As a doctoral student at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in the 1980s, James L. Olds had an adviser who taught him how to apply for federal grants by including him directly in the process.

"I was very lucky" to have that comparative advantage, said Mr. Olds, whose early training in seeking grant support furthered his subsequent progress to become a college professor and, now, head of the biological-sciences directorate at the National Science Foundation.
But many other research professors at American universities don’t provide their graduate students the same training that his adviser did.

Read More…

Thursday, June 22, 2017

How to Help Social and Behavioral Research Findings Make Their Way into Practice Settings

NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Blog
June 15, 2017

“Why fund behavioral intervention research if the interventions found effective are not adopted in practice?” This was a recurring question I heard when meeting with various National Institutes of Health (NIH) institute and center directors to seek their input on the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) 2017-21 Strategic Plan.

Their perspective is consistent with what our field has acknowledged and worked to address: Health researchers in general – and behavioral and social sciences researchers specifically – cannot be satisfied with leaving our research findings at the water’s edge and hoping these findings will be adopted into practice.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Open Opportunities to Do Collaborative Research

NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Blog
June 14, 2017

The National Institutes of Health is the world's biggest public funder of biomedical research, investing more than $32 billion each year—and a sizable amount of that money can be tapped by mental health and behavioral science researchers, especially those who are interested in collaborating with other disciplines.

Several major initiatives welcome a transdisciplinary perspective, even if on the surface they don't sound terribly psychological. Among them are the All of Us/Precision Medicine Initiative, the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative, Environmental influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) and the Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) program.