Jan. 16, 2018

Statement by NAS, NAE, and NAM Presidents on the Political Review of Scientific Proposals

The highest standards of scientific integrity, transparency, and accountability are critical to maintaining public confidence in our nation’s research enterprise and in the wise use of the public investment in research.  The public expects policymakers and agencies to base those investments on independent advice and assessment from unbiased experts without political interference.  For these reasons, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine view any political review of scientific proposals as inappropriate, as it gives the appearance of political interference in science.  At the same time, we recognize the prerogative of federal agencies to align funding programs with their mission priorities in their calls for proposals and in their requests that reviewers assess the relevance of proposals to agency priorities as one of the criteria in proposal evaluation.

Marcia McNutt
President, National Academy of Sciences

C. D. (Dan) Mote, Jr.
President, National Academy of Engineering

Victor J. Dzau
President, National Academy of Medicine