IR 307 MBC_Science

IR 307 MBC_Science - NEWS FOCUS 65 64 63 62 61 60 59 58 57...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
65 64 63 62 61 60 59 58 57 56 55 54 53 52 51 50 49 48 47 46 45 44 43 42 41 40 39 38 37 36 35 34 33 32 31 30 29 28 27 26 25 24 23 22 21 20 19 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 21 SEPTEMBER 2001 VOL 293 SCIENCE www.sciencemag.org 2196 in the scientific mainstream.” Brody, too, is a fan of greater inclusion. And he concedes that geography has become an essential element in the federal funding picture. “Five years ago, I’d have said that emerging institutions can do it on their own. Today there’s a realization that the lack of geographic distribution undermines political support for all biomedical research,” he says. But Brody and others worry that BRIN may not be the best strategy. “It doesn’t re- quire states to make the necessary invest- ment in their research infrastructure,” he notes. “Look at some of the newer UC [Uni- versity of California] campuses or the Flori- da system. State legislators there decided to put up the money, and those schools have become topflight research institutions.” Vaitukaitus says that NIH chose not to re- quire states to ante up money for BRIN “be- cause we didn’t want to be unfair to those states that can’t afford it. But they do need to show an institutional commitment to strengthening their research capacity.” She says that “these people can be the best, too, given the resources and the wherewithal to carry out research.” The BRIN awards will provide each state with up to $2 million a year for 3 years, and some state officials are already hoping for a second round to allow sufficient time to col- lect data on the program’s impact. Next month NIH will sponsor a workshop in Ok- lahoma City to discuss the evolution of both COBRE and BRIN. “From our perspective,” says Taylor, “the best thing that could hap- pen is for these states to graduate from the IDeA program.” However, EPSCoR’s track record at NSF suggests that such an outcome is unlikely. All the original states are still eligible—and thus still at the back of the scientific pack. At the same time, NSF raised the bar a few years ago by shifting some of the funding to its research directorates, forcing applicants to hold their own against proposals from the rest of the country. That’s the sort of competition that NIH must foster, the advisory council told Kirschstein this summer. “Whatever you do, you need to rely on merit review and com- petition,” says Brody. “Without that, you risk the loss of scientific quality.” –JEFFREY MERVIS NEWS FOCUS EL NARANJO,THE PETÉN,GUATEMALA— From a motorboat plying the tranquil San Pedro River in this remote area, John Beaver sur- veys the jungle around him. To the north, a wetland teeming with birds and alligators fans out from Laguna del Tigre, a national park. To the south, verdant karst hills stretch off into the Sierra del Lacandón park. Beaver, a field staffer with The Nature Conservan- cy (TNC), hopes to provide safe passage for the animals by protecting a strip of land,
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Page1 / 3

IR 307 MBC_Science - NEWS FOCUS 65 64 63 62 61 60 59 58 57...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online