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however, in order to determine whether the project is being pursued with skill and competence. While private foundation investments are of great value in financing research, they often lack this long-range feature.-H. H. Draper.
I favor a 50–50 ratio for Government and private foundation investments in aging research.-G. L. Freeman.
My own opinion is that it is not Government or private foundation promotion, as seems to be implied here. Both can be and are involved in a cooperative and complementing endeavor in promoting research in the field.—Marcus S. Goldstein.
I see no need for any change in existing relationships between governmental and private foundation investments in aging research. I would assume that both will see fit to increase the amounts of their allocations to gerontological research as the number of qualified and interested personnel increase and as the problem of aging itself increases. I would assume that the Government is in a better position than the private foundation to promote long-range investments in such research.—Sidney Goldstein.
I think the Government should promote long-range investments in research, in distinction to private foundation promotion. In general, although there should be no hard-and-fast distinctions, it is more appropriate for private foundations to support particular research projects and for the Government to provide basic support for the development of specialized research institutes and training in this field.—Margaret S. Gordon.
As between Government and private foundation grants, the basic question is far broader than its specific application to aging research. Undoubtedly, each of these sources views the scene and tries to fill evident gaps in whatever areas of research may be of interest to them. Certainly Government cannot withdraw on the assumption that private foundations will assume the burden, and, in this field particularly, some of the problems will require such large investment in research that there is no reasonable prospect that private foundations will accept the task. This is particularly true because of the large-scale experiments that will be required in many instances to detect the small-scale effects involved in many of the phenomena characteristic of the aging process. I feel that aging research in the biological area is indeed "such a new and emerging area that financing and encouragement for researchers in this field need special attention." Long-term studies on a large scale are costly and need the sustained interest of a research group of sufficient size to maintain continuity of personnel, concept, and interest over intervals measured in decades.-Alexander Grendon.
From the preceding discussion it will be clear that I am in favor of Governmentpromoted, long-range investments in research provided that adequate safeguards are established to guarantee scientific freedom. This statement in no wise intends to minimize the importance of private foundation investments in aging research but constitutes merely a realistic appraisal of the financial structure of our society. Private resources are no longer adequate to carry more than a fraction of the research required in years to come and Government support, either directly or indirectly, is needed to fill the gap.-Lissy F. Jarvik.
Definitely yes. Long-range support of a research project allows the investigator time to do the research which he feels is the most important, and to do it in a more exacting manner. Otherwise he may limit his research to problems which he expects to get very rapid results, and use methods which are not the most desirable but will give him some kind of data to use in a research report so that he can apply for another short-term grant. I do not feel that there is any competition between Government agency support ante private foundations. The fullest support of both is needed to effect a better understanding of the process of aging. -Robert B. Johnston.
The relation of private to Government grants in aging research is not particularly unique to the subject, for the issue has been pertinent in such areas as health, community studies, education, race relations, population, and so forth. The outstanding characteristic of governmental grants, particularly those from NIH, is their freedom to investigate-quite contrary to many stereotypes about Government aid. On the other hand, perhaps the chief disadvantage is the hesitancy in assisting lesser-known and younger scholars. Among the many factors which enter into a comparison are the area of interest, the facilities needed, judgments on the continuation of work begun, and the amount of money involved. In my opinion no attempt should be made to distinguish dogmatically as to proper areas for governmental or private investments in aging research. For example, the Ford fund, which has large sums available, has disturbed many scholars in the degree to which it has taken upon itself the judgment of valid issues, thereby discouraging scholarship in pioneer areas of thought. The Government, on the other hand, has numerous facilities, as in hospitals, which should become more available to students even though these students are not directly related to the hospital program. I therefore advocate that both Government and private foundations remain flexible as to kinds of issues they will entertain, the amounts of moneys available, and the method of selecting projects. There are perhaps three specific lines of thought which might characterize Government grants:
(a) Studies of controversial issues such as race riots or desegregation;
(6) Awards to scholars who come from minority groups, such as Negroes, who are hindered in the first place by difficulty in obtaining university posts; and
(c) Studies which pertain directly to international types of research in aging.–Max Kaplan.
The promotion of long-range investment in research on aging would be desirable especially if funds were not only approved, but actually appropriated for a period of several years. For 1-year grants the appropriation should be made several months before the grant starts; as a result of the frequent postponement of the appropriation, applicants frequently change their decision and apply for other positions while waiting for the appropriation.—John E. Kirk.
I think that the Government should pursue its policy of research support independent of that of private foundations. While the Government should be aware of the work and aims of private foundations and should consult and cooperate with them when feasible, it should not relinquish any of the various functions of research support to private foundations. In general, private foundations see as their role the instigation of needed research. If long-range support is necessary such foundations seek in one form or another to have the support underwritten by the public or by the Government. As far as aging is concerned, there is no private foundation which has demonstrated either the capability or the interest in the support of gerontological research to the extent that it is necessary. If effective gerontological research is to be done, it must be given long-range support by public agencies. This does not mean that private foundations have not given support to research in this area nor that they have been ineffective in what they have done. It does mean, however, that the job is a big one and that the major responsibility of support for essential research rests with Government.—Robert W. Kleemeier.
I believe that the policy of long-term support with considerable latitude of procedure should be granted. Such grants to individual investigators, I believe, would be more productive than institutional grants which tend to go into areas for which direct support from the granting agencies is not available. The security of long-term grants would encourage investigators to undertake major broad experimental attacks rather than seeking to study minor self-limited problems
ACTION FOR THE AGED AND AGING
which can lead to early publication of what are often insignificant advances. Such long-term commitments are particularly important in the procurement of postdoctoral associates for purely research appointments. Such appointments do not carry tenure, and therefore, do not appeal to the brighter, more ambitious, and more aggressive young men.
It has not been our impression that there is significant competition of funds between research within Government institutions and grant supported institutions. Support in both areas appears justified. A national institute of gerontology would have obvious coordinating advantages. The medico-biological approaches cover a wide variety of disciplines, and pertinent research will undoubtedly be done in many different laboratories in other institutes as well. However, the several laboratories of an institute of gerontology would have the advantage of emphasis on the orientation of the research. Overlap with other institutes is not undesirable and need not be discouraged. It undoubtedly exists now in biochemical research in the existing institutes with a stimulating, rather than deterring, influence on research.-N. B. Kurnick.
The Government should promote long-range investments in aging research which may be too costly for private foundations. There is no need to establish a relationship between Government and private agency investments in research.-C. J. Leblond.
Yes, but see above. Private foundation support will inevitably become pro portionately less in our changing world. Moreover, in my experience, govern mental support is less apt to be influenced by the "practical direction of investi gative work.—John W. Magladery.
Governmental versus private foundation promotion. I do not feel sufficiently well informed to offer an opinion on this.—Donald Mainland.
I have a distinct feeling that the relationship between Government and private foundations in research on aging is not a very well coordinated or integrated one.-Ross A, McFarland.
Can there not be some common agreement worked out between governmental agencies and the larger private foundations so that there will not be duplication of support? · Competition in the same field risks wastage of money.- Robert T. Monro
I strongly approve of governmental promotion of long-range investments in research, independent of private foundation promotion.— William Montagna.
The extent and scope of research programs in all phases of human endeavor will increase rather than diminish with time and the products of such research will not only be a boon to our Nation but will constitute the very perpetuation of our Nation with its inhabitants, hence long-range investments in research should be an inherent part of the legislative structure of our Government. This is in no way to be construed as competitive with private foundation promotion which should and will continue for many obvious reasons which I shall not discuss here.Matthew T. Moore.
I would prefer long-range investments in research. Emphasis on the faster and more effective communication of new knowledge to all deserves attention. Private foundations are useful but should not become involved except as advisers in governmental programs.—Robert W. Mowry.
In answer to this, I refer you first of all to the attached report. Private foundation support is seriously lagging in the field of aging and at present shows little signs of improvement, especially in the areas of basic research and training of personnel. I do not believe governmental programs should depend on the potential concerns of private foundations since the latter may have rather limited objectives in the field. More directly, private foundations are quite often more interested in “policy” or “practical” research and less likely to support developmental programs of broad research or training and to sustain them over a period of time. -Harold L. Orbach.
As Federal support of research increases, Government agencies should make long-term investments in men and institutions, following the same procedure now taken by panels, study sections, etc., which give the highest priority to the institution that has consistently appointed competent scientists and provided a congenial research atmosphere. A scientist's achievements, his status, and reputation, rather than the merits of a specific detailed proposal, is one suggested basis for awarding funds.—Harold F. Osborne.
Centers for the study of aging should also act as training centers for laboratory scientists and physicians. It would be very much worthwhile to include in the overall grant funds for such training, which should subsidize specific courses in problems of gerontology as well as direct research training.–Gregory Pincus.
Yes, definitely. Private foundations are impatient for results.-Otto Pollak.
I consider that long-range investments in research when promoted by the Government are desirable in that the afford security and time for the development of broad research programs. Such long-range investments are of course predicated on a stable research program in which the participating scientist will continue to work. However, such a stable framework is not always predictable and a long-range program may not develop as anticipated. I approve of such long-range investments when the granting agency is convinced that there is a good chance that a program will benefit and develop under these special conditions and security. I would hope that both governmental and private foundation investments would participate in aging research.—Dorothy Price.
The Government should promote long-range investments in research but not at the cost of the private foundation system. Private foundations should be allowed to apply for governmental support on the same basis of merit as individuals who apply for research support.-Ernest Retzlaff.
Very definitely, yes. My comments above indicate that I do not feel that we can expect much private support of such research for the present, because of the less dramatic nature of senescence and the problems of the aged and aging. However, either through specific bond issues or through congressional commitments of funds, long-range programs in research and investigatorships and professorships in gerontology are necessary to attract and maintain research interest and participation by dedicated medical, biological, and physical scientists to this growing field of research.-Morris Rockstein.
I think the Government should underwrite the long-range projects. foundations could supplement certain phases.---James B. Rogers.
At present there seems to be little distinction between the research fund granting by Government and private foundations in the social sciences. The same personnel are found on the advisory committees and the same policies are followed. Government may be better equipped to promote long-range investments in research, but both kinds of organizations need to keep their minds open to new kinds of research operations and new research topics, whether they be long range or short range. One requirement for this would be to avoid the interlocking directorates which now prevail in both private foundation and Government committees which make grants for research in the social sciences.--Arnold M. Rose.
Longitudinal studies covering long periods of time are essential in aging research. These kinds of studies can rarely be supported by private foundations, even though they are of great importance. This is an area of support where public funds would be particularly well employed.-K. Warner Schaie.
Long-range improvement of the investment of the Government in research on aging is definitely necessary. The sharing plan mentioned a number of times previously is feasible and may contribute to reducing expenditures—Henry P. Schwarz.
There is a significant place for both governmental and private support of research, including long-range investments. Ideally, the relationship between these dual sources would be complementary with programs imaginatively conceived to assure adequate support for priority problems and gap areas.
We do not believe that any specific percentage relationship between governmental and private foundation investments in aging research should be established; both types of support should be encouraged.—James A. Shannon.
In addition to training new scientists, facilities and long-term support for studies in aging must be provided to encourage competent investigators to devote their talents and energies to problems of aging on a full-time basis.—Nathan Shock.
It is in the nature of research in gerontology that projects will extend over long periods of time. The established policy of the NIH of awarding grants for research committed for periods up to 7 years and repeated continuation grants for similar periods, if the results or the work in progress warrant it, should suffice to give the responsible investigators the security and planning possibilities needed for long-range studies. As a rule, commitments need not exceed 5 years. It is not an unreasonable burden for an investigator to give an account of his accomplishments and to reevaluate the project after 3 or 4 years, the time for renewal application. With the rapid accumulation of new knowledge from all parts of the world the grantee himself may find it desirable to alter his approach and his aims after an interval of several years.
Long-range investments should be made the particular responsibility of the Federal Government, if private foundations hesitate to enter such commitments. Otherwise the relations between private foundations supporting research in gerontology and the governmental agencies should be based on the same principles as the corresponding policies regarding the support of research in cancer, leukemia, heart, rheumatic diseases, etc.—Martin Silberberg.
It is to be hoped that private foundation support of research will not stop because of Government contributions in this field. It is to be hoped that private foundations will continue so that the Government will not have a monopoly on the support of medical research. Otherwise, the investigator who has an application turned down will have no other place to apply, and there will be a tendency on the part of Government committees to approve applications which they do not really favor, rather than place the applicant in a hopeless position.Henry S. Simms.
Should the Government promote long-range investments in research, in digtinotion to private foundation promotion? What should be the relationship between governmental and private foundation investments in aging research?