Senator Wants to End NSF Funds for Political Science
- NSF releases guidelines for complying with law barring support for political science
- Senate votes to defund political science research, save tuition assistance in budget bill
- In wake of Coburn amendment repeal, social science groups plot path forward
- Political scientists consider strategies to deal with ban on NSF support
- Senate vote prompts discussion among political scientists about their political strategy
Sen. Tom Coburn, an Oklahoma Republican, is proposing that Congress bar the National Science Foundation from supporting research in political science. While the NSF is best known for its support for the physical sciences, computer science and engineering, it has a long history of also supporting work in the social sciences. A statement from the senator said: "The purpose of this amendment is not to restrict science, but rather to better focus scarce basic research dollars on the important scientific endeavors that can expand our knowledge of true science and yield breakthroughs and discoveries that can improve the human condition." While such an amendment is unlikely to be enacted, the American Political Science Association is organizing letter-writing efforts against the measure.