advocacy

Dear Research Advocate: The 2014 Nobel Laureates will be announced next week. I hope you will consider amplifying the news via social media, op-eds and letters to the editor. The Nobel prize is so iconic that it provides an entrée to the broader public, one that can be used to connect the dots between the process of scientific discovery, the power of ingenuity, and the role of science in human progress. And if a winner has been funded by a U.S. science agency or company, all the better from an advocacy perspective! In the years ahead, will the United States be home to more Nobel Laureates in the sciences, or will those honors go to scientists in countries that place a greater emphasis on...
Dear Research Advocate: Just when you thought that there is no good news coming from Washington, it looks as though we have a new congressional champion for research. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) penned a most welcome op-ed in the Asbury Park Press this week. We trust this is just one way he works to convince his constituents and his fellow lawmakers of the high priority the nation should be assigning to research. Championing research can be a heavy lift, since it’€™s no secret that some policymakers don’€™t see why government should have any role in R&D. A recent article in Forbes pushes back. As part of the BRAIN Initiative, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is...
The Research and Development Efficiency Act (H.R. 5056) is a common-sense piece of legislation aimed at reducing unnecessary red tape that slows and adds needless costs to federally funded research. This bipartisan legislation passed the House unanimously, but the Senate has not yet considered it. The bill would require the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to establish a task force to recommend reforms aimed at modernizing and streamlining the administrative requirements surrounding federally funded research, helping researchers to optimize the use of awarded funds. Don’€™t let H.R. 5056 die in the Senate. We need your help to build momentum for Senate passage so that the...
Research!America’€™s newest fact sheet series highlights the personal stories of medical research and the importance of increasing the NIH budget in FY15. We hope you will share these fact sheets with your representatives or congressional candidates, or take it with you on Hill or in-district visits. No one who reads these stories can doubt the significance of medical progress. A stronger investment in research is needed now more than ever! Here are their stories: John Hudson Dilgen, Epidermolysis Bullosa Steve DeWitte, Parkinson’s disease Victor Medina, Traumatic Brain Injury Carrie Scott, Multiple Sclerosis Max Hasenauer, X-linked agammaglobulinemia Michael Moskowitz, non-Hodgkin’s...
Dear Research Advocate: My colleagues at Research!America have shared the role as author of our weekly letter during my recent sabbatical. My thanks to them for providing timely and actionable information to our wide network. As I am ’€œre-entering’€ the Washington space, I have been struck by (1) the significantly worse condition of the roads ’€” potholes everywhere, and now even sinkholes in DC! I’€™ve been in several global capitals this spring, including in less-developed countries, and DC doesn’€™t look good in comparison. Via recent domestic travels, I can attest to the poor condition of our roads nationwide, taking a toll on vehicles and our economy, while eroding public confidence...
Research!America salutes Board of Directors Chair John Edward Porter, the 2014 recipient of the Public Welfare Medal from the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the Academy’€™s most prestigious award to honor the extraordinary use of science for the public good. Porter’€™s leadership in advocacy for research has strengthened our nation’€™s global competitiveness in science and technology and advanced medical innovation to new heights. As chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, Porter demonstrated tremendous foresight, calling on policymakers to support robust investments in research to improve quality of life, combat debilitating...
by Amy Comstock Rick, CEO of Parkinson’€™s Action Network April is now about halfway over but there is still plenty of time to help raise awareness for Parkinson’€™s disease and the millions affected. Parkinson’€™s disease is a chronic, progressive neurological disorder and the second most prevalent degenerative neurological disease after Alzheimer’€™s. So far this year, people all over the country have honored loved ones with Parkinson’€™s disease by helping the Parkinson’€™s Action Network (PAN) and the other national Parkinson’€™s disease organizations spread awareness of the disease and its impact on our nation. PAN, a nonprofit advocacy organization based in Washington, DC, would like...
Dear Research Advocate: The doubling of the National Institutes of Health budget between FY99 and FY03 is an example of Congress at its most productive ’€¦ and it hinged on bipartisanship. A small group of Republicans and Democrats recognized the power of medical progress, and they worked together to increase the budget baseline for NIH by nearly $11.5 billion. Without that doubling, and with the stagnation of virtually all non-defense discretionary funding that followed on its heels, which groundbreaking medical discoveries would still lie dormant? Which of those we hold dear would not be alive today? Research!America Chair and former Congressman John Porter, who chaired the House Labor-...
Research!America members and partners extend warm congratulations to Research!America Chair The Honorable John Edward Porter for his well-deserved recognition by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) with the dedication of the Porter Neuroscience Research Center. Our nation has benefited from Mr. Porter’s leadership in advancing medical and health research as chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education during his tenure in Congress, and as an indomitable force in the research advocacy community. As a U.S. representative, he worked across the aisle to cultivate champions for research, articulating the societal and economic benefits of...
Dear Research Advocate: There is still time ’€” if you act quickly ’€” to urge your representative to sign on to the House letter authored by Representatives McKinley (R-WV-01), Davis (D-CA-53), Carson (D-IN-07) and King (R-NY-02) urging more support for NIH ’€” it will be finalized by close of business today. A similar Senate letter, authored by Senators Casey (D-PA) and Burr (R-NC), will be finalized Tuesday, April 1; ask your senators to sign on today! An appropriations mechanism known as a “tap” made the news Tuesday when, during a hearing on NIH, Members of Congress asked advocates questions about the use of a tap by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to move money from...

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Luck shouldn't play a role in why I'm alive.
Laurie MacCaskill, a seven-year pancreatic cancer survivor