Washington Update

FASEB Identifies Priority Policy Recommendations for the Biden-Harris Transition Team

By: Jennifer Zeitzer
Thursday, December 17, 2020

On December 11, FASEB sent a memo to the transition team working with President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. The document outlines 10 key recommendations intended to provide biomedical science policy insights and guidance for the Biden-Harris Administration.

Developed in consultation with and approved by the FASEB Board, the recommendations covered three overarching themes:

  • Increase Investments in Science and Innovation — FASEB encouraged the Biden Administration to submit budget proposals to Congress that provide predictable, stable, and sustained funding increases over multiple years for National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science, the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, and the Veterans Administration Medical and Prosthetic Research Program. In addition, FASEB urged the administration to maximize the amount of funding dedicated to investigator-initiated research.
  • Sustain the Research Workforce — FASEB advocated for the Biden Administration to provide supplemental appropriations that will allow NIH and NSF to continue supporting younger investigators whose careers were interrupted by COVID-related laboratory shutdowns. Reducing the impact of regulatory burden on the research workforce, preserving the commitment to merit review of grants, and underscoring the importance of having a diverse cabinet and increased diversity in the scientific workforce were also mentioned.
  • Engage Stakeholders in Policy Discussions on Public Access to Peer-Reviewed Publications — The Biden Administration should take additional care to engage all stakeholders in setting policies pertaining to scientific publishing — the lynchpin for so many activities related to appropriate stewardship of federal funds. Similarly, these discussions should examine the impact of U.S. policies on international collaborations and the downstream effects on scientific progress and integrity.

Representatives from the Federation participated in a discussion with the transition team members following receipt of the memo, and FASEB will continue to play a key role in helping the Biden-Harris Administration develop biomedical research priorities for the next four years.