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Retain Organizational Structure of White House S&T Advice, Report Says

March 21, 1997

The present organizational structure for science and technology advice in the White House should be retained and its operations fine-tuned to better serve the needs of the President, according to recommendations of the Carnegie Commission on Science, Technology, and Government.

The Commission suggests integrating the various S&T advisory organizations more fully into the operations of the White House and Executive Office and to focus the S&T advice on presidential priorities and initiatives. For example, the Commission recommends that the Assistant to the President for Science and Technology should give primary attention to serving the President and should play a policy and advisory role similar to that of other Assistants to the President.

The Commission's recommendations include:

  • The appointment of a chief of staff for the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), so the Director of OSTP will have more time to perform the duties of Assistant to the President.
  • The National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) should concentrate its resources on a small number of priority policy issues of concern to the President and reduce its emphasis on detailed R&D program development and cooperation.
  • Increased financial and staff resources for the President's Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology to enable it to meet more frequently and to undertake more in-depth studies on S&T issues of importance to the President.

The Commission is co-chaired by William Golden, chairman of the board for the American Museum of Natural History, and Joshua Lederberg of Rockefeller University. Among the Commission's members are former President Carter.

Copies of the report can be obtained by faxing a request to the Commission at 212/838-6019 or accessing the World Wide Web home page at http://www.carnegie.org/nextadm.htm