In DepthScience Policy

Russia targets Western ties

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Science  17 Jul 2015:
Vol. 349, Issue 6245, pp. 224-225
DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6245.224

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The news last week that the Dynasty Foundation, Russia's only private funder of scientific research, is closing its doors adds to a darkening prospect for philanthropic support of Russian science. The decision by the Dynasty Foundation's council, announced 8 July in a terse one-sentence notice on Dynasty's Russian-language website, came weeks after the Russian government had labeled Dynasty a "foreign agent" under a recently enacted law. That move was part of what many see as a growing official crackdown on organizations the government considers subversive. A new mechanism, separate from the foreign-agent law, threatens to label such groups as "undesirable" and make collaborating with them illegal, potentially curtailing their support for scientists. Anna Piotrovskaya, the foundation's executive director, told the press that she cannot say exactly when it will close but that all of Dynasty's obligations to current grantees will be fulfilled.