Leading social and behavioral sciences publisher SAGE today joined with science associations and American universities in opposing the FIRST Act. This act proposes to cut the funding level for the National Science Foundation’s Directorate of Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences by almost 42 percent and imposes unnecessary and burdensome rules on the proven grant-application procedures and gold-standard merit-review processes overseen by the scholars at the NSF.
On Monday, March 10, members of the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, introduced the Frontiers in Innovation, Research, Science, and Technology Act of 2014 (FIRST Act) as H.R. 4186. This bill aims to reauthorize the America COMPETES Act, first introduced in 2007 to “invest in innovation through research and development, and to improve the competiveness of the United States.”
However SAGE believes that the FIRST Act of 2014 instead impedes the nation’s goals for development, innovation, and competitiveness, and should be opposed by all members of Congress.
Social, behavioral, and economic (SBE) research plays a vital role in helping the American people to understand the complex human phenomena that impact challenges the nation faces in areas such as health, national security, responding to disasters, and technological innovation.
SAGE encourages supporters of SBE research to join the campaign to oppose any version of the FIRST Act that proposes to cut NSF’s SBE Directorate. Members of Congress can be contacted here via the Consortium of Social Science Associations (COSSA) website. We also encourage supporters to join the debate in support of SBE on Twitter, using the hashtag #VoteNoHR4186.