close this bookVolume 7: No. 07
View the documentUS funding news
View the documentCareer jobs (in our CCJ 7.04 digest this week)
View the documentPlanning and constraint satisfaction
View the documentNeural and expert systems

Commerce Business Daily is now available free on GPOAccess. CBD announces grant initiatives, contract awards, and other US government procurement information. Notices are moved to an archival database after 15 days. CBD can be accessed at , via Telnet/SWAIS as (login "guest"), or by dial-in at 202-512-1661 (8-N-1). GPO Access User Support is , 1-888-293-6498, 202-512-1262 Fax. [Andrew J. Grant , grants-l, 14Jan97.]

FEDIX Opportunity Alert!!! (FOA) claims to have emailed over 2M federal opportunity announcements to 16K subscribers in its first 9 months -- with pass-along readership of 65K-80K people -- resulting in over 2K additional proposals. Expansion of the service is planned. Sign up at , or send suggestions to . [16Jan97.] (Now 25K subscribers, according to . The page has additional US federal grant info and electronic commerce/proposal submission initiatives.)

Searchable databases of federally funded projects for NSF, NIH, USDA, SBIR, and the NIST Advanced Technology Program (ATP) can be found through links on . [Donna Wair , gsunet-l, 07Jan07. net-hap.]

NIST ATP proposals are due 30Apr97, for multi-year awards totalling $10M-$15M in the first year. The competition will support ongoing ATP focused programs in Information Infrastructure for Healthcare and Motor Vehicle Manufacturing Technology. A meeting will be held in Gaithersburg, MD, on 13Feb97, or you can check or for competition details. The ATP Proposal Preparation Kit is available from , (800) ATP-FUND, (301) 926-9524 Fax. [NIST UPDATE, 06Jan97.]

Meanwhile, the Clinton administration is balking at signing off on TRP awards because of the earmarks that Congress inserted. (Such earmarks are not debated on the floor of Congress, and may be written by staffers. Public sentiment against them is getting so strong that some of Sen. Robert Byrd's constituents held a "No Pork" rally to protest his extraordinary success in bringing home the bacon to West Virginia.) A short-term compromise for TRP may be to fund the earmarks from other Defense programs. [Robert L. Park, WHAT'S NEW, 18Mar94.]

Sen. Phil Gramm (R-TX) has introduced The National Research Investment Act of 1997, S.124, to double non-defense basic research spending over 10 years -- an increase of about 7% per year for peer-reviewed research in a dozen agencies and programs. The bill will likely win bipartisan support. US science and technology agencies have not done will over the past few years, except for NSF and NIH. Eight other major agencies doing basic research are down 10%. Corporate S&T declined even more sharply, according to a new National Academy of Sciences analysis for FY 94-97. Only 1.9% of the federal budget currently goes to non-defense R&D, down from 5.7% in 1965 (and declining for the last four years). [Robert L. Park, WHAT'S NEW, 17Jan97 and 24Jan97.]

Sen. Gramm and Connie Mack (R-FL) introduced a separate resolution to double federal biomedical research in just five years. Even if the resolution passes, it won't guarantee funding. However, bipartisan support for science appears to be increasing. In particular, President Clinton is talking more about investing in education, science, and technology than he did in his first term. [Robert L. Park, WHAT'S NEW, 24Jan97.]

Sen. Barbara Mikulski last year wanted NSF to direct its new funding toward strategic national priorities. (This was highly controversial, but committee chairs do have power.) Well, NSF has succeeded in classifying 75% of its FY95 increases as going toward strategic research. Mikulski's next concern is that NSF help educators prepare students for the job market. [Robert L. Park, WHAT'S NEW, 17Jan97.] (NSF's education budget is miniscule when divided by the number of schools in the US -- or when compared to other state and federal education funds. What NSF can probably manage is to shift research/curriculum/training funds into higher-profile "career day" posters and event suggestions, or perhaps sponsorship of TV programs. Which is OK, if it inspires kids and improves the image of Science and scientists. Erich Bloch was very successful as NSF director with his "pipeline" analogy -- more of a pyramid, really -- until the kids and minority groups found few jobs at the end of the pipe. Money to the lower ranks is very diffuse and speculative compared with money directed to graduate schools and research. But it's good pork, and popular with parents.)

NSF's initiative on Interdisciplinary Research in Learning and Intelligent Systems (NSF 97-18) requires pre-proposals by 07Feb97. LIS seeks to unify experimentally and theoretically derived concepts and to develop new scientific knowledge on learning and intelligent systems and its creative application to education. See or . [Maria Zemankova , dbworld, 25Jan97.]

Retiring House Science Committee chair Robert Walker (R-PA) is now president of the Wexler Group, a Washington lobbying firm. One of his clients is the Science Coalition, formed by research universities encouraging grass-roots support for science. [Robert L. Park, WHAT'S NEW, 17Jan97.]

Christopher Toumey's cultural anthropology book "CONJURING SCIENCE: Scientific Symbols and Cultural Meanings in American Life" introduces "the pseudosymmetry effect." The American public has enormous respect for scientific authority, but believes that anyone in a white smock is a scientist. Charlatans simply hijack the symbols of science, giving a false impression that scientists are equally divided on pseudoscience issues. [Ibid, 03Jan97.]

The Southern California Association for Philanthropy (SCAP) is a nonprofit association of private sector grant makers. . [, net-hap, 10Jan97.]

The Burroughs Wellcome Fund (Durham, NC) has awarded $10M in five-year grants to two university-led consortia, for research linking hard and soft sciences (such as physics and biology). The next competition will begin in Sep97. [BW, 27Jan97, p. 101.]

Informix Software, Inc. (Menlo Park, CA) has announced an Innovation Software Grant Program to give US/international educational and non-profit organizations no-cost access to Informix's database technology. Recipients get a one-year product license with software, documentation, updates, support, and training. Subsequent support and training are available at a discount. Current recipients include the USC Brain Project, USC Integrated Media Systems Center, Berkeley Drosophila Genome Project, and MIT Press Digital Projects Lab. "The program provides one of the best engines for developing new models for Internet driven instruction." Contact . [Christine Shannon , comp.databases.informix, 09Jan97.]