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Audits, Budget, Compliance, Executive Branch, General, Legislative Branch, Pre-Award, Sponsor Policies

High Quality Research Act Discussion Draft

Well this is pretty interesting. On Wednesday, April 17, 2013, the US House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology held a Full Committee Hearing on A Review of the President’s FY 2014 Budget Request for Science Agencies. The Committee posed a question about the selection of NSF awarded grants that based on the grant title raises an eyebrow on how they were funded. The day after the Full Committee Hearing, a bill discussion draft entitled “High Quality Research Act” was distributed for feedback in preparations for bill introduction. The Discussion Draft states:

Subsection A: Certification

Prior to making an award of any contract or grant funding for a scientific research project, the Director of the National Science Foundation shall publish a statement on the public website of the Foundation that certifies that the research project

  • Is in the interests of the United States to advance the national health, prosperity, or welfare, and to secure the national defense by promoting the progress of science;
  • Is the finest quality, is ground breaking, and answers questions or solve problems that are of the utmost importance to society at large; and
  • Is not duplicative of other research projects being funded by the Foundation or other Federal science agencies.

Subsection B: Transfer of Funds

Any unobligated funds for projects not meeting the requirements of the subsection A may be awarded to other scientific research projects that do not meet such requirements.

Subsection C: Initial Implementation Report

Not later than 60 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Director shall report to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives on how the requirements set forth in subsection A are being implemented.

Subsection D: National Science Board Implementation Report

Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the National Science Board shall report to the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives its findings and recommendations on how the requirements of subsection A are being implemented.

Subsection E: Implementation By Other Agencies

Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, in collaboration with the National Science and Technology Council, shall report to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives on how the requirements of subsection A may be implemented in other Federal science agencies.

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