The law of supply and demand applied to NIH funding

Demand for funding has increased, but something tells me that the supply is not going to adjust. From the AAAS this week:

NIH Blog Highlights Increases in Research Grant Applications. On her blog Rock Talk, NIH Deputy Director for Extramural Research Sally Rockey posted data on NIH grant applications over the past decade-plus—specifically, competing applications for investigator-initiated research project grants (meaning they were not submitted in response to a specific request for applications). Total direct costs requested in such applications went from $4.4 billion in FY 1998 to $13 billion in FY 2011. The amount of money awarded in that pool doubled, from $1 billion to $2 billion. Put another way, in FY 1998 the demand for research dollars was 3.6 times the supply. By FY 2011, demand was 6.5 times the supply. The largest factor in this change is a rise in the number of applicants — from 19,000 to 32,000.

The solution – reduce demand by attrition, as people realize this career path is insane.

Author: Mike White

Genomes, Books, and Science Fiction

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