News of the WeekU.S. Science Policy

Panel Explores What It'll Take To Keep Universities Strong

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Science  09 Jul 2010:
Vol. 329, Issue 5988, pp. 126-127
DOI: 10.1126/science.329.5988.126

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U.S. research universities may be the envy of the world, but they are under increasing stress. Endowments have shrunk, state support has declined, and operating costs are rising. University administrators say they also need help in complying with an increasing number of federal rules covering research topics that include bioweapons and financial conflicts of interest. Now, at the behest of Congress, the National Academies has convened a blue-ribbon committee to examine these concerns and recommend ways to keep research universities healthy. But universities are likely to be disappointed if they are hoping that the committee will conclude that money is the solution. The panel's chair said in an interview with Science that he intends to push the 21-member committee to take a close look at the way the universities themselves operate.