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Uncertain Future for Academy's Biology Experiment

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Science  19 Nov 2010:
Vol. 330, Issue 6007, pp. 1040
DOI: 10.1126/science.330.6007.1040

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Ask anyone familiar with the Russian Academy of Sciences how the organization can be reformed so that it funds the best researchers, rather than those with the best connections, and the discussion quickly turns to the efforts of Georgii Georgiev. The former director of the Institute of Gene Biology in Moscow, Georgiev founded and runs the academy's Molecular and Cell Biology (MCB) program. Since 2003, MCB has awarded grants to groups based on their scientific track record, and it has provided the chosen research teams with enough freedom and money to pursue what they deem interesting. Georgiev is trying to make the system transparent, molecular biologists say.