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Mr. MOSHER. They are borrowing people?
Mr. INK. Furthermore, they are drawing heavily upon our staff in the Bureau of the Budget. We are developing much of the material for them. And through us they are drawing heavily from the departments and agencies so that in terms of man-hours the bulk of the
fort really comes from the departments and agencies, and what we are able to put into it. The evaluation, of course, is provided by the council itself.
Mr. MOSHER. Mr. Chairman, are we perhaps going to have Mr. Ash come before us and ask how he expects to operate? This has such a direct bearing on the considerations of this committee I just wondered.
Mr. DADDARIO. We have invited Mr. Ash. We have not had a reply from him as yet and we believe it would be helpful to the committee if he would come.
Mr. INK. Mr. Chairman, I am sure there are also a number of questions and issues which have been raised by the committee which the council will not cover. Some of these the Bureau of the Budget will be working with, and some of them I think some of the departments will.
Mr. ĎADDARIO. Mr. Ink, you raise a very good point that the way things are being managed generally in various places adds to the problem. We recognize this in the Congress—the way that it is presently structured makes this job much more difficult because of some of the jurisdictional problems. We made a recommendation some time ago, that the weather modifications activity of the National Science Foundation be taken out of the NSF.
Mr. INK. Yes.
Mr. DADDARIO. We thought that it ought to be put in ESSA, that after that was done that ESSA ought to be taken from Commerce and placed into Interior. This shows you that it does get a little complicated.
Mr. INK. Well, I don't need to tell you the complexity.
also does fit the thinking of the committee, as I understand it, and that is that organizational change is not an end in itself, but a means to improve the achievement of program objectives, and therefore I would like to underscore the kind of issues which I think the committee is raising, asking the question of organizing for what.
Mr. DADDARIO. I agree with that statement, but we ought not to allow it to be used as a reason not to organize.
Mr. INK. No, I would certainly agree with this. And also, it should not be interpreted that organization is not important in itself, because organization can be extremely important. But it is within the context of what we are trying to achieve that organization must be studied. And that is why I like the approach of the committee.
One of the points I make in my testimony is that the extent to which one begins to draw together a large number of research activities in the interest of getting better planning, better coordination, in the interest of minimizing the opportunity for duplication, one begins to develop large organizations which I think tend to reduce the
flexibility in program planning, flexibility in research, and can, if we aren't very careful, tend to stifle creative science. Large organization tends to bring with it layering and administrative complexity, and we substitute one type of complication in decisionmaking for another. So that this is one of the difficult offsetting problems that we have to deal with, and it is one which we are so much concerned with in other types of organizations. The Cabinet departments have this difficulty, typically. And it is one problem that I would like to stress here in considering these various options.
The committee, I know is tremendously interested in the national laboratories. I mention two approaches and there are many. One approach is to broaden the charter of existing laboratories both in-house and contractor operated laboratories—and then provide the laboratory management with the funds and resources that can be used to pursue activities in areas of high national priorities.
Mr. DADDARIO. Do you see in that regard, Mr. Ink, any problem so far as the Bureau of the Budget is concerned in accountability if you were to allow such flexibility of funding?
Mr. Ink. I think the problem of accountability can be handled.
Mr. DADDARIO. Are you giving some thought to that so far as making recommendations or hasn't it reached that stage!
Mr. Ink. It has not reached that stage. But I believe this can be met.
Another approach, of course, is to reduce the Federal resources that are being devoted to supporting laboratories that are working in areas of declining or lower priority and create new institutional arrangements for new problems. And of course, the merits and drawbacks you are familiar with. Certainly the first approach of flexibility in a multidisciplined laboratory does have an advantage from being able to use existing organizations, existing facilities, existing expertise. It avoids the problems and expenses of sudden curtailment or termination of activities and the cost of establishing these new institutions.
Characteristics of the personnel in an existing laboratory, their approach to problems, however, sometimes work against their ability to cope effectively with new problems. It is sometimes difficult for å laboratory, as with other institutions, to respond quickly to new changes. It is difficult for
them to pare down or phase down an effort as other priorities come. This is true of any kind of an organization. It is not, as I see it peculiar to science.
While the human resources of the organization are, I would think, most important, the facilities and equipment that are appropriate for the old problems are not necessarily appropriate for the new. There are some cases where existing laboratory organization, however, has broadened the scope of its activities, and I think has worked effectively on new problems.
Now, I use as an example in my testimony the AEC Oak Ridge Laboratory which I understand has approximately 15 percent of its funding coming from sources other than Atomic Energy Commission programs.
And having worked on that some years ago to develop that flexibility, I probably am personally more optimistic than some that this has greater applicability in other areas. I must say, however, that I don't think that experience, or the other experience we have in this area, is extensive enough to provide a conclusive demonstration that this is an approach that we ought to use generally. And I suspect that no one approach is one that should be followed as a general rule, because I think the circumstances vary from one laboratory to another, and from one program to another. So my inclination is to plead for flexibility. But I do not think that we have studied these in enough depth to reach firm conclusions.
Mr. DADDARIO. The flexibility ought to come about, Mr. Ink, because it does meet certain requirements rather than have that flexibility come at a time when the sponsoring agency is looking for something else to do.
Mr. INK. Absolutely. I couldn't agree more. And we have had both. We have had both. And as has been mentioned here earlier, I don't think any of us are really satisfied with our mechanism for priority setting and goal setting in the Federal Government. And the problems in this area I think are reflected in what we are talking about right now. It is not easy to project down to the laboratory level these priority shifts—it is difficult for them to be reflected in terms that are meaningful at the laboratory level. It is hard for them to be enunciated very promptly. So as we now stand, it is somewhat difficult to develop this kind of flexibility, although in theory I think it has a lot of merit.
Mr. Chairman, I know the time is limited. I would like to associate my thinking with several comments that have been made earlier this morning concerning the centralization of research and say that with respect to whether there should be more centralization of basis research, I am not sure.
I can see some strong reasons for doing this, but I am skeptical of the idea of centralizing mission research. I feel that generally speaking, this ought not to be separated from mission agencies if the research program is to contribute effectively to the missions of the agencies. And it seems to me the experience that we have had, although there are exceptions, the experience we have had in Defense and NASA, and AEC, for example, tend to support this.
Mr. Brown. May I raise a question at this point?
Mr. Brown. I have been thinking with regard to this question of mission-supported basic research. There are some anomalies in this as you look back over the last 30 or 40 years. When you look at the posture of the Defense Department today which is related to missiles, nuclear weapons, and so forth, most of the basic research which resulted in the development of the Defense Department's more sophisticated systems did not originate in the Defense Department.
This point was made by the previous witness from the Commerce Department, and it struck me at the time when he said that something like-oh, I forget the figures that he used,-only about 20 percent of
the innovations that led to particular developments actually came about in the industries which produced those particular products. This seems to be even more true in the Defense Department. It was not the Defense Department, for example, which did the work which resulted in the development of nuclear bombs. We stole our missile capability from the Germans after they had done the primary work on it. Aircraft development, to go back to an earlier era, was fought by the military for many years. I am wondering if the large preponderance of Defense Department funds which are available for R. & D. and are used for R. & D. are actually productive to the degree that we would like to see them productive.
Mr. INK. I would hesitate to make a broad statement on that. I do think that some excellent work has been done, for example, in ONR. That office I think has supported some very fine work. It is true in the nuclear area that of course the technology was provided primarily through the Atomic Energy Commission and its contractors and associated universities.
On the other hand, that was the way in which it was organized. So that may have something to do with this.
And of course much of Defense is oriented by its missions toward the applied research area and the developmental phases, and consequently that is where I think most of their effort should be placed.
Mr. Chairman, I would also like to-I have only two more points. I would like to underscore the importance of our finding more effective ways of utilizing social science in pursuit of social goals and also more effective utilization of physical research in pursuit of social goals.
HUD was mentioned this morning, for example. The work in the housing area, which has been very minimal in terms of research effort, physical research directed toward housing, needs to be meshed with, as I see it, social science.
The problems of displacing people, the impact on human beings, the impact on families through displacement, through Federal programs, whether wban renewal or transportation highway programs, the sociological problems of commuting—there are a whole range of things which I think we need to learn how to deal with more effectively.
And, Mr. Chairman, again having had some experience both in a scientifically oriented agency and with the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which has not had a background of science, I was impressed by the need in HUD for really learning how to approach science, really learning how to utilize science effectively in many of the program areas and departments with people kinds of programs as their assignment.
And finally—I don't think I mentioned this in my testimony, but it occurred to me as I was listening this morning, that I think people do not realize, many times, the international significance of science. And I think in part this may be because much of our exchange in the scientific area—which I think is very promising, I think it is one of the areas in which we have some of the earliest potential of trying to work back and forth across the Iron Curtain—but much of our work, much
of our exchange isn't of a type that really reaches most peoples in the various countries.
Because the scientific language is one that is understood universally, Dr. Seaborg for example, can speak to his counterparts in the Soviet Union and they understand each other and can work together.
I was on an exchange in the Soviet Union one time, and I was really amazed at how we were able to bridge some of these gaps.
But we also, I think, need to give attention in the field of housing, in the field of medicine, the technological areas that have concern and have interest and have meaning to many people, not just individuals in laboratories, not just the scientists in these countries.
So that I think as we move ahead there is a greater potential here than we have really realized in the field of science helping in the international atmosphere.
Mr. DADDARIO. Mr. Ink, I made the point yesterday that the transfer of a man with great systems capability such as Dr. Finger from the NASA-Atomic Energy coordinating operation to HUD where he would take these talents and utilize them, I hope, in the development of better housing capability, is a strong step in this direction, and one from which I think we will learn a lot as we go along.
I am displeased with the idea that we have to close these hearings, because there is much more that you could add through a whole series of questions. And again, we will forward them to you.
Mr. INK. Yes, sir. (Questions submitted by the subcommittee to Dwight A. Ink:) Question 1. It is common knowledge that the National Science Foundation has always had difficulty selling itself to Congress and the American public. What positive steps can you suggest that the Foundation might take to improve its image, extend its constituency and secure the funds corresponding to a national policy of continued preeminence for U.S. science?
Answer 1. There is probably no ready answer to this question. Nor can the question be dealt with solely in terms of the National Science Foundation.
As the Committee is well aware, the difficulties which the Foundation has recently had in defending its budgets before the Congress are bound up in the more general problem of justifying overall Federal support of science, particularly science activities unrelated immediately to agency missions or to the solution of national problems. Thus, the Foundation has the double burden of justifying science generally as well as its own support role. The agency does not have the advantage of having its science activities support a primary mission which is politically popular.
On the other hand, we believe that the new Administration in the Foundation is in an advantageous position—because it is new-to present a fresh image to the public and the Congress—which could assist in enhancing its budget defense.
The Bureau has no blueprint as to how the new Administration in the Foundation should proceed in dealing with the problem raised by the Committee. The best we can offer at this time is a number of suggestions that might be considered in improving the ability of the Foundation to defend its programs :
Improve Foundation contacts and relations with institutions in sciencenot just the scientists. Increased contacts with presidents and other administrative officials of universities is specifically suggested.
Intensify Foundation efforts in public understanding of science—now a small program of the Foundation.
Develop more explicit evidence of the relationship between basic science and ultimate applications. Improve the marketing of such information to appropriate information media.