May 30, 2014 - This Week's Consolidation of Advocacy News
Amidst Partisan Split, U.S. House Panel Approves Controversial NSF Bill
May 29, 2014 | Science Insider
Members of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee voted on amendments to the Frontiers in Innovation, Research, Science and Technology (FIRST) Act along party lines this week. All of the amendments that would have altered language to protect NSF's granting processes and funding within the agency failed to pass. The bill is now heading to the House floor for consideration, although when is still unknown.
- Contact your member of Congress to make your case for NSF funding using this new fact sheet.
German Politicians Break Research Funding Impasse
May 27, 2014 | Science Insider
German leaders have agreed to make a change in the constitution that would allow the federal government to fund universities directly, which is currently prohibited. The agreement includes funding for several key programs that have boosted research budgets in recent years, such as the Joint Initiative for Research and Innovation.
- Learn more about the FENS-SfN Advocacy Grants Program whose goal is to enhance the effectiveness of global advocacy efforts.
A Disaster for European Science
May 25, 2014 | Slate
Nigel Farage, leader of the U.K. Independence Party, is pushing for Britain to leave the European Union, which would cut off British scientists from access to funding from the European Research Council.
- Learn more about neuroscience funding in the U.K. at sfn.org/advocacy.
Building Africa's Scientific Infrastructure
May 23, 2014 | Scientific American
The Planet Earth Institute, an international NGO working for the scientific independence of Africa, sponsored a panel on how African countries can work with businesses to make Africa more competitive in the fields of science, technology and engineering.
- Check out the International Brain Research Organization’s Global Advocacy Program (IBRO), a collaborative effort in support of advocacy programs across all the world’s regions.
Scottish Independence Would Damage Research Funding, Warn Medical Experts
May 23, 2014 | The Guardian
A group of experts, including senior staff from all five of the country's main medical schools, expressed concern in an open letter that Scotland's world-leading biomedical and life sciences research would suffer if Scotland leaves the U.K.
- Register for our new webinar, Advocacy Activities: Good for You, Your Institution, and the Field, to learn how advocacy activities contribute to your professional success.
Article of Interest
Military Plans to Test Brain Implants to Fight Mental Disorders
May 27, 2014 | NPR
This article reviews the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) program that will develop the use of electronic devices to treat psychiatric disorders such as depression and PTSD. This project is being led by scientists at the University of California, San Francisco and Massachusetts General Hospital as part of President Obama's Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative.
- Explore our new Worldwide Neuroscience Initiatives resource at SfN.org/advocacy.
"Undemocracy": Inequalities in Science
May 23, 2014 | Science
The author brings attention to the inequality of resources and money among scientists and the pros and cons of a granting system that rewards top performers. Specifically, he says that "resources and rewards must be allocated so that inequality, although incentivizing scientists to make important scientific discoveries, is properly managed and controlled."
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