SPECIAL OVERSIGHT R, V1" 7
AGRICULTURAL RE"EARC .AND DEVEL IENT
INTERIM REPORT //
BY THE SUBCOMMITTEE ON SCIENCE, RESEARCH
AND TECHNOLOGY AND THE
DOMESTIC AND INTERNATIONAL
SCIENTIFIC PLANNING AND ANALYSIS
COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
JUNE 1976 Printed for the use of the Committee on Science and Technology
U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 73-646 WASHINGTON : 1976
For sale by the Superintendent of Documents. U.S. Government Printing Office Washin.gton, D.C. 20402 Price 45 cents
COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
S- OLIN E. TEAGUE, Texas, Chairman
KEN HECKLER, West' Virginia CHARLES A. MOSHIER, Ohio
THOMAS N. DOWNING, Virginia ALPHONZO BELL, California
DON F~JQUA,. Florida JOHN JARMAN, Oklahoma
,JAMES .TV. .SYM1TGTON, Missouri, JOHN W. WYDLER, New York WAINER FLOWERS, Alabama LARRY WINN, JR., Kansas
ROB4RT -. ROE, New Jersey LOUIS FREY, Ja., Florida
MIKE McCORMACK, Washington BARRY M. GOLDWATER, JR., California
GEORGE E. BROWN, JR., California MARVIN L. ESCH, Michigan DAL MlhPQRD, Texas JOHN B. CONLAN, Arizona
RAY THORNTON, Arkansas GARY A. MYERS, Pennsylvania
JAMES H. SCHEUER, New York DAVID F. EMERY, Maine
RiC.HARDL. OTTINGER, New York LARRY PRESSLER, South Dakota HEN4yY A. WAXMAN, California PHILIP. H. HAYES, Indiana TOM HARKIN, Iowa JIM LLOYD, California JEROME A. AMBRO, New York CHRISTOPHER J. DODD, Connecticut MICHAEL T. BLOUIN, Iowa TIM L. HALL, Illinois ROBERT (BOB) KRUEGER, Texas MARILYN LLOYD, Tennessee JAMES T. BLANCHARD, Michigan TIMOTHY E. WIRTH, Colorado
SUBCOMMITTEE ON SCIENCE, RESEARCH AND TECHOLOGY
JAMES W. SYMINGTON, Missouri, Chairman
DON FUQUA, Florida CHARLES A. MOSHER, Ohio
WALTER FLOWERS, Alabama MRVIN L. ESCH, Michigan
MIKE McCORMACK, Washington LARRY PRESSLER, South Dakota
GEORGE E. BROWN, Ja., California RAY THORNTON, Arkansas JAMES H. SCHEUER, New York TOM HARKIN, Iowa JIM LLOYD, California CHRISTOPHER J. DODD, Connecticut TIM L. HALL, Illinois ROBERT (BOB) KRUEGER, Texas MARILYN LLOYD, Tennessee TIMOTHY E. WIRTH, Colorado
SUBCOMMITTEE ON DOMESTIC AND INTERNATIONAL SCIENTIFIC PLANNING AND ANALYSIS
RAY THORNTON, Arkansas, Chairman ROBERT A. ROE, New Jersey JOHN B. CONLAN, Arizona
DALE MILFORD, Texas JOHN JARMAN, Oklahoma
JAMES H. SCHEUER, New York GARY A. MYERS, Pennsylvania
HENRY A. WAXMAN, California JEROME A. AMBRO, New York JAMES J. BLANCHARD, Michigan
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
CoXMITTEE ON SCIENCE AND TECHaNOLOGY, Washington, D.C., June 28, 1976.
Hon. GuN E. TEAGu,,
Chairman, Comimittee on Science and Technology, U.S. Home of
Reprresentatives, Washington, D.C.
DEAR MIR. CHAIRMAN: During June, September and October of 1975 the Subcommittee on Science, Research and Technology and the Subcommittee on Domestic and International Scientific Planning and Analysis held eleven joint sessions of hearings on Agricultural Research and Development. These hearings were held to accomplish the purposes of Special Oversight, a function assigned to the Committee on Science and Technology by the ninety-fourth Congress.
Our Subcommittees are preparing a comprehensive report which will review the major aspects of the U.S. agricultural research system based on the voluminous testimony and supplemental material which was made available to the Subcommittee. It will also make recoillmendations based upon a detailed analysis of the record. rfhe Subcommittees believe this document will be valuable for the Congressional Committees and executive bodies involved in policy making for agricultural research.
At this point in our report preparation we are anxious to solicit the comments and views of such policy making groups and the agricultural research community in the light of our preliminary findings and tentative conclusions. Consequently we have chosen to print and circulate this "Interim Report," a nd we will appreciate the advice or opinions which our colleagues on the Committee and in the Congress might provide.
It is emphasized that the findings and conclusions in this report are tentative in nature. They will be refined and to some extent revised in the final report.
SinceelyJAMEFS W. SYMINGTON,
Chairman, Subcommittee on Science, Research, and Technology.
Chairman, Subcommittee on Domestic and International Scientific Planning and Analysis.
Letter of Transmittal ------------------------------------------------- III
Special Oversight ----------------------------------------------------- VIT
Introduction -------------------------------------------------------- I
Agricultural Research and Development --------------------------- 1
Preliminary Hearings -------------------------------------------- 1
Background Papers ---------------------------------------------- 2
Main Hearings --------------------------------------------------- 3
Meld Hearings ---------------------------------------------------- 4
]Issues Examined During the Oversight Review ------------------------- 7
Improved Policy Formulation, Management Structure, and Coordination of Research ----------------------------------------------- 7
Higher Quality Research by Scientists ----------------------------- 9
Isolation and Removal of Research Gaps --------------------------- 9
Improved Communication Among Researchers, the Users of Agricultural Research and the Consumer ------------------------------- 10
Findings, Tentative Conclusions and Suggestions for Consideration ------ 11
Improved Policy Formulation, Management Structure, and Coordination of Research ----------------------------------------------- 11
Higher Quality Research by Scientists ----------------------------- 14
Isolation and Removal of Research Gaps -------------------------- 16
Improved Communication Among Researchers, the Users of Agricultural Research and the Consumer ------------------------------- 21
Preparation of Final Report ------------------------------------------ 23
Research and development is conducted throughout the Federal Government. Most agencies and departments support research and development to further advances in those fields of science and technology which are related to their mission.
In the House of Representatives these research and development activities are reviewed individually by a number of standing Committees having jurisdiction of the various programs, agencies, and departments. Beginning with the 94th Congress, the rules of the House provide that a continuing review of the entire Federal research and development effort be done. For this purpose the Committee on Science and Technology is charged with the function of Special Oversight in this area. Rule X, paragraph 3 (f ) provides that "The Committee on Science and Technology shall have the function of reviewing and studying, on a continuing basis, all laws, programs, and Government activities dealing with or involving non-military research and development." This Special Oversight function is to be performed in addition to the legislative and direct oversight function of the standing committees.
The review and the recommendations included in this report are made pursuant to this Special Oversight provision of the House rules.
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AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
The field of agricultural research and development was given high priority for special oversight by both the Subcommittee on Science. Research and Technology and the Subcommittee on Domestic and International Scientific Planning and Analysis. Subsequently a joint effort to study this topic was begun early in 1975.
The timing of the Subcommittees' involvement with this topic, while principally determined by the newly-assigned special oversight function, is significant in terms of the high level of interest and activity in this subject across the entire Federal establishment and in other sectors. During the past decade there has been a growing awareness of the deteriorating food situation, but only more recently has the crucial relationship of agricultural research to the solution of the problem been fully recognized.
The question has legitimately been raised, "Why another group? What can these Subcommittees expect to contribute ?" In answering that question, the Subcommittees primarily rely on the fact that the Committee on Science and Technolooy has long held broad responsibilities for examining the general state of science and technology, and in doing so has built up experience and some expertise in reviewing maj or programs having scientific content. Both Subcommittees are firmly committed to offering whatever knowledge they possess in such matters in the service of the best interests of the country.
A number of leading authorities suggest that the "world food problem" is really one of certain developing nations. More is really at stake, however, than the humanitarian goal of meeting the food needs of the world's people, important as that is. International relations can be severely strained by the prospect of widespread bunger, and for this reason the long-term productivity of the American farmer and his foreign counterparts may be the determining factor in our pursuit of world peace. The goal of agricultural research is to ensure this productivitv, and these Subcommittees have joined to do all they can to ensure its success.
Following a period of studv on the subject of agricultural research, the Subcommittees held preliminary hearings on June 25 and 26, 197.5 to provide a general overview of agricultural research. Witnesses were as follows:
Jane 25, 1975: Dr. Sylvan 1T. Wittwer, director of the Michigan State Universitv Agriculture Experiment Station, appeaiingr as Chairman of the Board on Agriculture and Renewable Resources, National Academy of Sciences.
June 26, 1975: Robert AV. Long9 Assistant Secretary of Agriculture for Conservation, Research and Education, and Dr. Orville G. Bentley, Dean, College of Agriculture at the University of Illinois, cochairmen, Agricultural Research Policy Advisory Committee (joint statement).
These hearings were published as a separate document under the title "Agricultural Research and Development: Special Oversight Hearings" and include correspondence from Congressman Fred Richmiond to the two Subcommittees expressing his views; and the answers of the witnesses to supplemental written questions directed to them by the Committee.
In conjunction with the June 1975 hearings the Subcommittees published a document entitled "Agricultural Research and Developmnent: Backgrround Papers." This document was intended to provide Members, witnesses and other interested individuals with a, group of background materials to prepare them for a second set of hearings on agricultural research and development scheduled for September and October, 1975. The background materials were, intended to: (1) identify some of the major issues and problem areas in the world food situation which mnay be directly affected by the application of science and technology, (2) briefly summarize some of the major reports and studies and (3) outline ongoing efforts to evaluate the agricultural research system.
In addition to a short introduction, the following items were included in this background document: Part 1-Assessment of U.S. Agricultural Research and Development:
Programs, Priorities and Institutions. (Office of Technology Assessment, Food Advisory Committee).
Part 2-Science, Technology and Agriculture: Program Options. (F.
P. Huddle, Congressional Research Service).
Part 3-Agricultural Research and Scientific Planning. (Leo V.
MAayer, Congressional Research Service).
Part 4-Summaries of Two Major Reports on Agricultural Research
and Development. (Elaine B. Carlson, Congressional Research
Report on Agricultural Production Efficiency.
Research Advisory Report to the U.S. Department of Agriculture,
Par't 5-Science, Technology and Agriculture: Selected readings,.
(Elaine B. Carlson, Congressional Research Service).
Agricultural Production Efficiency.
Energy and Agriculture.
Food and Nutrition.
Post Production Losses.
Remote Sensing and Agriculture.
Part 6--Working Conference on Research to Meet U.S. and World
Purpose, organization and procedure.
Research to Meet U.S. and World Food Needs-Situation, policy and capabilities.
World Food Situation.
Public Food Policy.
Part 7-Research Support by the National Science Foundation on
Agriculturally Related Subjects. (A. Carl Leopold, Science and
Technology Policy Office, National Science Foundation).
Part 8-Agricultural Production Efficiency, Food and Nutrition,
Overview Studies: A Selected Bibliography, 1966-75. (Elaine B.
Carlson, Congressional Research Service).
Agricultural Production Efficiency.
Food and Nutrition.
At this point in the Subcommittees' study, it became very clear that the entire subject of agricultural research and development was far too large to be adequately handled in the six days of hearings planned for September 23, 24, 25, 30, October 1 and 2. For this reason the Subcommittees chose to limit the scope of the inquiry to that of agricultural research and development related to food. It is hoped that in the future additional special oversight hearings might be held on other aspects of agricultural research such as fiber, forestry, other renewable natural resources and rural life.
In contrast to the earlier hearings, this second set provided a more detailed discussion of specific issues and problem areas in food-related agricultural research and development. The following areas were singled out by the Subcommittees and provided the framework for the hearings: (1) Improved policy formulation, management structure and coordination of research; (2) Higher quality research by scientists; (3) Isolation and removal of research gaps; and (4) Improved communication among researchers, the users of agricultural research and the consumer. Both the national and international aspects of these problems were addressed.
Witnesses for these hearings were as follows: September 23, 1975:
Dr. Sterling Wortman, vice president, The Rockefeller Foundation.
Esther Peterson, consumer adviser, Giant Food, Inc. September 24, 1975:
T. W. Edminster, Administrator, Agricultural Research Service,
U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Dr. Thomas S. Ronningen, Associate Administrator, Cooperative
State Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, accompanied by Dr. Edward C. Miller, Deputy Administrator, Program Operations, Evaluation and Analysis; and Dr. Clare I. Harris, Deputy Administrator, Agriculture, Rural Development, and Consumer Service Programs, U.S. Department of
Dr. Orville G. Bentley, cochairman, Agricultural Research Policy
Advisory Committee and dean, College of Agriculture, University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, Illinois.
September 2-5, 1975:
Dr. Richard J. Aldrich, president, AgTricultural Research Institute, Columbia., Mo., accompanied by William L. Brown, president, Pioneer IFi-Bred International, Inc.: Ralph E. Baumib eckel, product ion research manager, Agricultural Equipment Division, International Harvester __Co.: William L. lis. science coordinator, National Agricultural Chemicals Association; Harold L. Wileke, consultant, retired corporate vice president for research, Ralston Purina Co.: and S. G. Younkin, vice
president, Agricultural Research, Campbell Soup Co.
Adolph Clausi, vice president for corporate research, General
Foods CorD., White Plains, N.Y.
Dr. Karl F. Mattil, director, Food Protein Research and Development Center, Texas A. & M. University, College Station, Texas. September 30, 19T75:
Hon. Frederick W. Richmond, a Member of Congress from the
State of New York.
Dr. Glenn S. Pound, dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin.
Dr. Charles A. Romiine, economist, Midwest Research Institute,
Kansas City, Missouri, accompanied by Bruce W. Macy, assistant director, Economics & Management Science Division;
Ivan C. Smith, senior advisor for Environmental Science. October 1, 1975:
Othal E. Brand, President, Griffin & Brand. Inc., McAllen, Texas.
Dr. Barry Commoner, director. Center for the Biology of Natural
Systems, 'Wa shin~xton University, St. Lou is, Missouri.
Dr. Edward HT. Glass, professor of entomology and head of
department. New York State Agricultural Experiment Station,
Cornell Uniiversity, Geneva, New York. October 2, 1(975:
Dr. William F. Hueg, deputy vice president. Institute of Agriculture, Forestry and Home Economies, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Robert, W. Long., Assistant Secretary for Conservation, Research
and Education, U.S. Department of Agriculture, accompanied by Dr. David J. Ward. Research Planning and Coordination
Office of the, Secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Upon the conclusion of the second set of hearings,. the Subcommittees were convinced of the importance of the individual researcher 1)oth in carrying out the policies andl priorities of the agricultural research system and in helping to formulate these policies and to determine research priorities. It then appeared that holding a, set of field hearings at several. centers of agricultural research would be valuable to the Subcommittees' inquiry.
On October 24 and 25, 1975 such hearings were held at the ITruiversity of Missouri in Columbia, Mo.. at the Federal Building in Pine Bluff.' Arkansas, and at Texas A&M"N University in College Station, TIex, Witnesses were:
Columbia, Missouri, October 24, 1975:
Dr. Chris J. Johannsen, State Extension Agronomy SpecialistLand Use, University of Missouri, Columbia, MiNlssouri.
Dr. David J. Barr, IDepartment of Mining, Petroleum, and
Geological Engineering, School of Mines and Metallurgy, University of Missouri, Rolla, Missouri.
Dr'. John Kenneth Gohagan, assistant professor, Center for Development Technology, Washington University, St. Louis.
Dale Starkey, Missouri Department of Conservation, Forestry
Ival D. Persinger, assistant State soil scientist, Soil Conservation
Service, Columbia. Ntoa cai n topei
Dr. Norton Strommen, Ntoa cai n topei
Administration Center for Climatic and Environmental Assessment, Columbia, Missouri.
Dr. E. C. A. Runge, professor and chairman, Department of
Agronomy, University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri.
Dr. Wayne L. Decker, chairman, Department of Atmospheric
Science, University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri.
Mr. L. C. "Clell" Carpenter, vice president, midcontinent Farmers
Association, Columbia, Missouri. Pine Bluff, Arkansas, October 24,1975:
Dr. James E. -Martin, vice president for agriculture, University of
Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Dr. Morris F. Ci'anmer, director, National Center for Toxicological Research, Food and Drug Administration, Pine Bluff, Ark., accompanied by Dr. David Smith, executive director, National Center for Toxicological Research, Pine Bluff, Arkansas.
Francis J. Williams, resident director, University of Arkansas
Rice Branch Experiment Station, Stuttgart, Ark., accompanied by Dr. Lloyd 'Warren, director, Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Stat ion, Fayettevil le, Arkansas.
Jack Justus, vice president, Arkansas Farm Bureau Federation,
accompanied by Nick Hargrove, vice president and W. F.
Wright. staff member, Arkansas Farm Bureau Federation. College Station, Texas, October 21") 1975:
Dr. Dudley Smith, assistant director, Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, College Station, Tex.
Dr. Perry L. Adkisson, head of the Department of Entomology,
Texas A. & M. University, College Station, Tex.
Dr. Frederick R. Miller, assistant professor of sorghum breeding,
Soil and Cr01) Sciences Department, and Dr. Lloyd W. Rooney, associate professor of cereal chemistry, Soil and Crop Sciences Department. Texas A. & M. University, College Station, Tex.
Dr. Wayne A. Le Pori, assistant professor of crop mechanization,
Department, of Agricultural Engineering; Dr. Charles G.
Coble, assistant professor of crop mechanization, Department of Agricultural Engineering; and Dr'. Ronald D. Lacewell. associate professor of resource economics, Department of Ag(ricultural Economics, Texas A. & M. University, Collegre Station,
ISSUES EXAMINED DURING THE OVERSIGHT REVIEW
A difficult problem faced the Subcommittees at the start of their oversight examination of agricultural research: how should the examination be structured to include the most important issues, yet not include everything related to agricultural research. In devising a structure for examination and -analysis the Subcommittees consulted with and obtained advice and recommendations from the Congressional Research Service, the Office of Technology Assessment, the Department of Agriculture, and the National Science Foundation. Numerous individuals offered ideas and suggestions, but especially valuable were the contributions by individuals mentioned in the section on Back ground Papers.
From this collection of ideas and suggestions and from an examination of the June 1975 hearing record emerged a substantial number of issues which have been structured under the following four main headings:
IMPROVED POLicy FORMULATION, MANAGEMENT STRUCTURE AND COORDINATION OF RESEARCH
1. What is the world and national structure within which agricultural research and development are being conducted?
2. U.S. agricultural research is managed through a complex system of Federal and State agencies; it has been charged that this complex system, with its large number of administrative' layers, has led to reduced quality of research.
3. Research duplication by independent institutions has been related to the "follow the leader" syndrome; a spurt of interest in one issuesvstems analysis or perhaps soybean breeding--can create wholesale shifts in res'e arch programs.
4. What are the main lines of agricultural activity affected by R. & D.?
5. What are the goals for these activities that agricultural R. & D. are expected to serve?
6. What priorities are assigned among these goals and on what basis?
7. How does increased food availability relate to population expansion? Are concurrent nonagricultural R. & D. policies and programs implicit in the relationship?
8. Should R. & D. focus on. TJ.S. a 'cultural efficiency, on specific approaches to expand world food siipply, or on some combination of these?
. 9. Do historical patterns of agricultural R. & A at State levels impose constraints on achievements of national coals in acrrictiltaral efficiency 2 1--,
10. What interrelationships exist among the goals of R. & ID., and can these be worked into an overall policy system?
11. What are the political problems related to the current agricultural research system ?
12. Are the available research resources in USDA and the Agricultural Experiment Stations beino' efficiently utilized? This includes qufestionls of total level of funding, allocations of funds at federal and state levels, competitive research grants, etc.
13. What are the organizational and financial requirements for the United States to effectively assist the creation of viable agricultural research institutions in the developing nations?
14. Has there been a decline in agricultural. productivity in the United States during the past decade? If so, to what degree and/or extent ?
15. What is the role and importance of the private sector in agricultural research? What contributions does it make to increasing agricultural ouitput? It is complementary or competitive with public sector research?
16. There is a need to develop better criteria for judging the adequacy of the level of public financing for agricultural research. These criteria should also take into account what is being- spent in the private sector. Such criteria are useful especially to determine:
(a) Whether reasonable allocation of research resources is being made between domestic and international activities, especially to consider the direct impact of U.S. research activities on increasing agricultural production in the less developed countries as well as the U.S. capacity to drain agricultural and social scientists
f rom developing countries. t
(b) Whether and how agricultural research can be productive
within the restraints of the costs associated with food production,
processing, and marketing.
17. 'What is the importance of future productivity growth in agriculture in determining the future real price of food and fiber in domestic and international markets? Under alternative assumptions about future levels of demand for U.S. food and fiber what rate of productivity would be required to hold constant or decrease the real price of food and fiber at the farm level? What are the implications of these alternative assumptions for levels of farm income?
18. 'What will future U.S. food and agriculture look like under alternative rates of gTrowth of productivity,, and how are these rates related to agricultural research-both in its level and how it is distriblite(1l among different crops and livestock?
19. Assess the set of constraints which society is placing and is likely to continue to place upon agricultural production. Since American agriculture probably will have to live with these constraints, the relevant question is: what direction should agricultural science and technology in the United States take to maintain productivity growth in U.S. agriculture consistent with societal objectives?
20. Whether or not enough money is being spent on agricultural research very much depends on what kind of research is being done. One mipyht argue that we are spending too much on agricultural research which is detrimental to the environment but not nearly enough
on lines of research which would yield productivity increases consistent with environmental objectives.
21. While lots of people and organizations make projections about productivity growth in American agriculture, these projections are not based on firm assessments of what research in agriculture is likely to yield in the way of productivity gains for the future. Can a more systematic form of organization for carrying out periodic evaluations of the relationship of productivity gains in agriculture to expenditures on research be established; and what can we realistically expect in the way of future gains from current or anticipated research programs?
HIGHER QUALITY RESEARCH BY SCIENTISTS
1. The maintenance of quality in agricultural research poses special problems. In many areas of research, the Federal and State efforts ar-e without comparable activities elsewhere for "cross-checking."
2. When scientists within the existing system are in the process of creating innovations, there is required considerable testing against old methods of agricultural production. Also, there are pressures to move ideas and innovations swiftly into implementation and mass production. It has been contended that these conditions can reduce the quality of research.
3. To offset research weaknesses and to improve the quality of innovation, research institutions have moved in the direction of adding more and more administrative procedures and bureaucratic layers. However, such moves can be detrimental to the quality of research.
4. Is the quality of scientific personnel engaged in agricultural research as high as it should be? What steps can be taken to raise the status of those engaged in agricultural research?
ISOLATION AND REMOVAL OF RESEARChi GAPS
1. What "non-agricultural" research activities are highly important to the agricultural R. & D. program?
2. Do we have sufficient diversity of genetic materials at the base of our major agricultural crops, particularly cereals?
3. Do we sufficiently understand the process of photosynthesis in order to direct research toward improved efficiency of conversion of the sun's energy to food and forage crop production?
4. What level of research support should be provided to increase yields of leguminous crops-for example, soybeans-as a means of improving world protein production?
5. Do we have sufficient research directed toward water conservation in crop and forage production?
6. What is the current relationship and future projections for the relationship of energy input to energy output in modern agriculture?
7. What tare the prospects for imnprovmig reproductive efficiency in livestock-particularly in improving efficiency with beef cattle?
8. Two specific pr-oblemn areas should be given attention: (a) the issue of animal anid crop waste disposal anid what might be done to recycle these wastes in a highly productive, way; (b) review the numerous regulations which impinge upon agricultural food produc-
tion and distribution and an assessment of the extent to which these regulations affect the supply of food and fiber in the United States, the returns to producers, and the cost to consumers.
9. A most pressing issue is the absence of systematic data on research being done in the private sector. It is almost impossible to effectively evaluate agricultural research programs and policies without having systematic knowledge about what the private sector is doing.
10. Under general area of "need to know" on systematic, -timely basis: (a) How much and what kinds of research being done in the United States have relevance to agriculture in other countries, particularly developing countries? (b) Relevance to the development and operation of meaningful overseas technical assistance programs in agricultural development? (c). What research is being done in other countries that is relevant to agricultural development in those countries as well to U.S. agriculture? (d) What is being done through other national programs and international efforts?
11. How can agricultural research efforts deal with both increases in product ivity and improvements in the quality of our environment? How does one gret agrricultural productivity and environmental issues posed in a more positive way?
12. There are social and intellectual barriers to acquiring new knowledge and achieving innovations. What can be done to create an, environment for breaking down these barriers?
13. What are the most effective organizational measures and strategies for isolating and removing research gaps?
IM-pr~O-vED COMMUNICATioN AMiONG RESEARCHERS, THE USERS OF
AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH AND THE CONSUavruI
1. What can be done to improve communication among agricultural research and other facets of agriculture such as production, marketing and consumption?
2. What steps can be taken to predict the development of new technologries which fall beyond the range of possible implementation?
3. What organizations should be involved in achieving expanded communications about agricultural R. & AD activities and what responsibilities should be assigned to these organizations?
FINDINGS, TENTATIVE CONCLUSIONS, AND
SUGGESTIONS FOR CONSIDERATION
IUPROVEI POLICY FORMrULATION, MANAGEMENT STRUCTURE AND COORDINAATIO N OF RESEARCH
The Subcommittees on Science, Research and Technology and on Domestic and International Scientific Planning and Analysis have found that the U.S. agricultural research system has no equal throughout the world and has served the country well in helping it to meet domestic and international food needs. These successes are evidence that the system is basically sound; however, as in any other area of human activity, the subcommittees believe that the present agricultural research system would benefit from certain improvements in its management structure and in the procedures used to coordinate its research efforts. The subcommittees therefore believe that careful consideration should be given to the following courses of action:
ESTABLISHMENT OF A -MORE CLEARLY DEFINED NATIONAL POLICY FOR AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH
Changes in the domestic agricultural situation and in the world food market have transformed both the politics of agriculture and the demands on agricultural research and development. The crucial role of agriculture in maintaining the United States' leadership in world affairs demands productivity increases which are steady over the longterm and not merely from one growing season to the next. The Subcommittees believe that the only means by which this goal will be achieved is the wise and continued application of the results of agricultural science and technology. This requires thorough, long-range planning, and the policy and mechanisms to carry out these plans.
The agricultural research system in the United States is extremely complex, with many sources of support and a variety of performers. This diverse community, which shoulders much of the responsibility for the Nation's well-being, would benefit from guidance on critical policy issues related to the work it performs. Trade-offs will always be necessary to fulfill the objectives of agricultural research within the prevailing economic, social and political framework; to aid them in making these decisions, agricultural researchers need the guidance which only a national policy may provide.
The Subcommittees believe that among other critical issues and questions the following need to be seriously examined, debated and subsequently laid out in a coherent policy statement: What tradeoffs is this country willing to make between agricultural production, energy consumption, materials availability, land use and environmental quality; between agricultural production, the survival of the independent, family farm and the preservation of rural life as it now exists; and between agricultural production. improved nutrition and food safety? Within this framework, how best can agricultural research be conducted?
INCLUSION OF QUALIFIED INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE KNOWLEDGEABLE IN TIIE
AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES AT THlE HIGHEST LEVELS OF NATIONAL SCIENCE~
The Subcommittees suggest that the present isolation of agricultural science from the rest of the sciences should be changed. The principles. embodied in our national science and technology policy cannot be adhered to nor effectively implemented under these circumstances, andthis situation is detrimental to the country as a whole. Agricultural science must be treated as an equal partner with the other scecsin the determination of priorities among the sciences and in the formulation of policies affecting the conduct of research and development.
To this end, distinguished agricultural scientists should be carefully considered for such positions as appointment to the Office of Science, and Technology in the Executive Office of the President, and memnbership on such bodies as the President's Committee on Science and Technology the National Science Board, and the advisory panels of the Office of Technology Assessment.
The Subcommittees are aware of the long history which underlies the. relative isolation of agricultural science f rom the other sciences, and recognize that -reversing the trend will not be an easy task. Increased respect for each other's disciplines and increased interaction and cooperation among the sciences are ends that will not 'be attained merely by the inclusion of a f ew agricultural scientists in the upper levels of government. However, the Subcommittees believe that the foregoing suggestion might well be a first important step in this direction.
M~E ROLE OF THlE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE IN THIE'CONDUCT AND
SUPPORT OF FEDERALLY FUNDED AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH PROGRAMS
Criticisms have been levelled at the Department of Agriculture which may suggest to some that any new or increased Federal invest~inent in agricultural -research should be provided to departments or agencies other than the USDA. These criticisms specifically relate to the types of research supported, the quality of the research, and overall interpretation of mission.
The Subcommittees believe that the leadership role of the Departmnent of Agriculture in supporting the bulk of the Federally funded agrLicultural research programs should be examined. This should be undertaken even though the record established by the existing system has been good and attempts to dismantle it or seriously weaken it appear presently to be unjustifiable.
The USDA-State Agricultural Experiment Station, system has the strong resource base necessary for the effective use of additional f unds. Such resources include trained and knowledgeable personnel, systems of communication, facilities and established programs with relatively stable sources of support.
This leadership role does carry with it major responsibilities such as initiating changes that -are necessary to insure the larger interests of the Nation as a whole, as well as fostering interagency coordination. A willingness to -discuss alternative strategies and thle elements of constructive criticism from within and outside the system is an importan~t aspect of the responsibility inherent in wise leadership.
In addition, the role of the designated representative of the Departinent of Agriculture to the Federal Coordinating Council for Science. Engineering and Technologyo in bringing to the Council's attention problems and developments in agricultural research should be determined. The Department of Agriculture and all other agencies involved in food-related research should also be responsive to the suggestions of the Committee on Food Research of the Federal Coordinating Council.
The Subcommittees are convinced of the need and desirability of maintaining a strong, pluralistic system of support for agricultural research, and the opinions expressed above should not be interpreted to the contrary. The Subcommittees intend that the Department of Agriculture provide guidance to, not direct, the conduct of agricultural research throughout the nation.
Better interagency coordination, however, is a desirable goal. The Subcommittees hope that new approaches to this will be tried, and believe that determining ways to link other agencies with the Extension Service and the Current Research Information System should be pursued.
CONSIDERATION OF AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT AS AN
ELEMENT OF GOVERNMENT-SPONSORED STUDIES ON THE BOARD TOPIC OF INFORM ATION DISSEMINATION BETWEEN THE PUBLIC AND PRIVATE
The Subcommittees were presented with evidence that, despite the
*close ties between the USDA and agricultural industries, there is a great need for improved coordination and communication among the public and private research efforts. The Subcommittees believe that this is an especially important area of concern both because of the crucial role of agriculture and agricultural research in the long-term interests of the U.S., and because of the limited funds available for the support of research and development in general as a result of the current economic climate.
The President's Committee on Science and Technology, established by Public Law 94-282, has been instructed to consider needs for, among other things, improvements in existing systems for handling scientific and technical information on a Government-wide basis, including consideration of the appropriate role to be played by the private sector in the dissemination of such information. The Subcommittees believe that the needs of the agricultural research community should be considered as an important aspect of this study and of any such studies which may be planned by other policy groups within the Federal Government.
The Subcommittees intend to consider the problem as part of their continuing oversight of information dissemination and technologysharing, respectively.
One suggestion made in the course of the hearings to improve coordination of public and private agricultural research was to include industry as part of the Current Research Information System. Proprietarv problems. the difficulties involved in identifying the numerous industries performing such research and the diverse reporting and cataloging procedures which may be used by these performers may
preclude industry's becoming a full partner with the USDA-SAES in such -a venture. If it is impossible for industry to include its ongoing research efforts in such a system, however, much might still be gained by giving industry access to information on the current research which is being conducted by the publicly supported agricultural research system. The Subcommittees encourage the USDA to explore the feasibility of this suggestion and to determine whether it may offer advantages in the near future, pending the development of a more complete system for all Federally funded research and development.
HIGHER QUALITY RESEARCH ]BY SCIENTISTS
Among the many findings reported in 1972 by the Committee on Research Advisory to the U.S. Department of Ag% _riculture of the National Research Council, National Academy of Sciences (the "Pound Report"), one in particular has been frequently quoted d during the course of the Subcommittees' study: "that much of agricultural research is outmoded, pedestrian, and inefficient." The USDA--SAES system has responded in various ways and degrees to the recommendations in the Pound Report which were offered to remedy this situation.
The Subcommittees recognize that there is necessarily a certain lead-time between enacting managerial changes and detecting the, effects of these changes on the outi put of the system. However, the Subcommittees are concerned by the fact that after a period of three to four years this same criticism of the present agricultural research system is evident in much of the testimony presented to the Subcommittees.
Measuring the quality of research is a difficult, sometimes impossible, undertaking. In carrying out its responsibility for examining the state of science and technology over the years, the Committee on Science and Technology has accumulated knowledge of and, it believes, some insight into problems of this type. Relying on this experience, the Subcommittees suggest that a strengthening of certain elements of the existing agricultural research system will produce increases in the quality. of the system's output. The Subcommittees believe that the following aspects are particularly important:
COMPETITIVE GRANT AWARDS FOR AGRICULTURAL RE"-SEARCH
Although the Subcommittees believe that formula funding is necessary for the maintenance of a strong system of agricultural research, productive research efforts above and beyond this base are encouraged by open competition for research funds. There are three characteristics of such a program of competitive grants that normally are important for insuring the support of the highest quality research:
First, the competition should be open to the widest variety of research institutions possible. This should include land-grant and nonland-grant public universities and colleges as well as private universities and colleges, private research institutes and other research organizations.
Second, research grant proposals should be subject to peer review. In its report on the peer review system of the National Science Foun-
dation, the Subcommittee on Science, Research and Technology stated that it was fair to infer from the testimony presented during the hearings "that witnesses agreed almost unanimously that appropriate peer review procedures would tend to select for funding those projects as the upper end of the quality scale, however high or low the upper end might be." Testimony presented by witnesses during the hearings on agricultural research and development leads the Subcommittees to conclude that this inference probably also applies to agricultural research projects. It is further likely that other findings and reconimendations made with regard to the NSF would be applicable to the USDA also. Systematic methods of ensuring that competent reviewers are identified and used regardless of institutional affiliation or geographical location should be devised. Reviewers should be drawn from the same variety of institutions as those eligible for support under the competitive grants program, and no single reviewer should be overused in relation to his or her abilities. In reviewing proposals for research of a more "applied" nature, the opinions of individuals outside the research community should be sought--e.g., farmers, eonsuimers, industry representatives, and so forth-but care must be taken not to equate the quality of the proposed research with its perceived applicability.
Third, broad guidelines concerning the areas of research to be supported by such a program should be provided, but funds should not be earmarked either by the Congress or the USDA for very specific areas of research. There should be sufficient flexibility in the system to ensure that if an area of research suddenly becomes "ripe" and increased support would lead to major advances, funds can be reprogram med and made available.
The Subcommittees also approve the tendency of the House Committee on Agriculture not to earmark funds for specific research, and hope that the Congress as a whole will refrain from such activity in the best interests of the nation and its scientific predominance.
UTILIZATION OF TIHE 44SPECIAL REVIEWS" AND ON-SITE REVIEWS" OF THE
STATE AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATIONS, CURRENTLY PERFOR-MED
BY THE COOPERATIVE STATE RESEARCH SERVICE
"Special reviews" of research programs or problem areas identified for improvement by the director of an experiment station and the "onsite reviews" initiated by the CSRS provide a means for encouraging the performance of high-quality research at the experiment stations and at the same time aid in improving the coordination of FederalState and State-State agricultural research efforts. The Subcommittees believe that both these functions are so important that a strengthening and an expansion of these reviews should be considered.
It is felt that one of the factors which has contributed most towards the effectiveness and success of these reviews is the utilization of highly-qualified peer panels in the review process. The Subcommittees believe that, where appropriate, these panels might include highlyqualified scientists from outside the USDA-SAES system. Increased communication and understanding among researchers and research administrators within and outside the USDA-SAES system should benefit both communities.
CONDUCT OF AND APPROPRIATE LOCATION FOR RESEARCH THAT IS NATIONAL
IN SCOPE OR WHICH REQUIRES MAJOR CAPITAL INVESTMENTS
The complex, decentralized system which characterizes agricultural research in this country has the advantage of a built-in responsiveness to a wide range of problems and public needs, especially at the local level. The evidence indicates that this local -input has contributed much to the overall strength of the system.
However, there are also needs which may be more "national" in scope or for which large capital investments need to be made in order to carry out a strong research program. The Subcommittees note that it may not necessarily be in the national interest for all research groups to shift their programs in the direction of this type of research, particularly if resources valuable for the solution of other (and perhaps more local) problems are drained in the process. In such cases such research might profitably be concentrated in a few laboratories best equipped to carry it out.
Federal funding practices, while emphasizing national needs, must be carefully balanced so as not seemingly to "force" the State Agricultural Experiment Stations in directions which may seriously impair their responsiveness to local needs. However, since the Federal government performs less than one-third of the food-related agricultural research and is dependent upon the SAES and the private sector for the remainder, any large national effort must necessarily require the participation of more than just the Federal laboratories.
APPROPRIATE EXPRESSIONS OF RECOGNITION OR REWARD FOR EXCELLENCE
AMONG MEMBERS OF THE AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH COM-MUNITY
The hearings clearly suggested that the esteem. in which the agricultural scientist is held by other scientists anti society is not as high as it should be, either here or abroad. This may be in part due to the average or perceived quality of the research, to the "'mundane" or earthth" nature of the research, or to the fact that much of the research is applied rather than basic. Whatever the causes, it is imperative that the successes of agricultural research and the accomplishments of individual researchers be made known to the broader scientific community and to the public.
The Subcommittees believe that little gain will he made in enhancing the esteem in which the agricultural scientist is generally held if his colleagues and employers do not fully acknowledge his achievements. Ways to effect this should be fully explored. Furthermore it is necessary that the agricultural researcher be encouraged to advance professionally as a researcher, both in terms of rank and salary.
ISOLATION AND REMOvAL OF RESEARCH- GAPS
As interest in agricultural research has intensified over the past. year or so., many groups and organizations have produced reports and recommendaitons'on areas of agricultural research which are, in their opinions, receiving "inadequate" attention. DepenclinT on the composition of the group. the skeptic may view such a report to be selfserving or, at best, highly subjective.
Nonetheless, reports prepared by groups with extremely diverse interests have shown remarkable agreement on the current research trends and gaps. Testimony supporting these findings, presented by witnesses from a wide spectrum encompassing both the public and private sectors, has been convincing on the point that measures must be taken to eliminate these problems and prevent others. The following areas are of special concern:
LEVELS OF SUPPORT FOR AREAS OF AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH WHICH ARE
VITAL FOR MfEETING FUTURE U.S. AND WORLD NEEDS
The Subcommittees repeatedly heard that the following areas of research need increased encouragement and support, either through the availability of new funds or through a reprogramming of existing funds. More technical descriptions of the types of research that need to be pursued have been prepared by distinguished agricultural scientists and are readily available; the Subcommittees do not presume to specify the details of these broad areas of research. Where it is believed necessary to clarify the Subcommittees' findings, however, more specific information is provided.
1. Research on basic biological processes.-The Subcommittees tend to believe that research on three basic biological processes-photosynthesis, nitrogen fixation, and genetic improvement-may be seriously underfunded in relation to the benefits which would result from significant advances in understanding these processes. Increased funding for this type of basic research, which is directly related to the major mission of agricultural research, should be provided from new or existing sources of funds.
Serious communication problems were found to exist between agricultural scientists and the basic research community (as exemplified by those receiving support from the National Science Foundation) when discussing the need for more "basic" research in agriculture. This problem stems from the fact that research is a continuum, and there is not clear separation, either in terms of substance or definition, between "basic" and "applied" research.
Therefore to make this recommendation as clear as possible, the Subcommittees note that the term "basic research" is being used here to mean fundamental, albeit purposeful, research, which is necessarily high-risk and often carried out at the molecular or cellular level.
2. IResearch on energy-conserving and environmeintally sound agricultural practices.-The interrelationships among food, energy and the environment are inseparable. Agriculture itself may be defined as the process of converting the sun's energy into food and other fuels. Agriculture can also be regarded as the science of living things-the same "living things" which constitute our natural environment.
The way that agriculture is conducted will therefore directly affect and be affected by the availability of energy and the need to consider
the quality of the environment. There is perhaps no one more aware of these relationships than the American farmer; but although the agricultural research system has responded somewhat to these factors, it has yet to prove that it has responded fully to them.
A thorough integration of energy and environmental concerns into the agricultural research system seems vital for the assurance of long-
term agricultural productivity. Alternatives to current agricultural practices need to be developed either for use in conjunction with existing methods or in anticipation of future developments which assure the balance among agriculture, energy and the environment.
3. Research on. human nutrition.-Nutrition resarch, and the subsequent education of the public on all aspects of human nutrition, is at a very primitive level. Although the National Institutes of Health conduct a substantial program in" nutrition research, the bulk of this effort seems to be less directed towards primary human nutrient requirements (which might prevent the occurrence of disease, in many cases), than towards the relationships between specific nutrients (or lack thereof) and particular diseases.
The USDA has not considered nutrition research a primary mission in the past. Yet in view of the vast amounts of money which the Federal Government is spending on domestic and international food programs, this state of affairs should be re-examined.
4. Research on intensive, high-yielding systems of arqriculture and other tyves of research Awhieh would benefit small-sca7e farm operat;ops.-It appears that insufficient effort is being expended on research which would enable the smaller farm units to remain competitive with large-scale production units. There are three major aspects of this problem which justify the concern.
First, as stated throughout these recommendations, short-term production efficiency should not be the supreme goal of aricultural research. Likewise, efficiency itself is not the supreme goal of societal organization. Not only is the human being an important "resource" which must be considered in the trade-offs of various types of agricultural research, but it is for human welfare and because of human labor that the system exists in the first place. It would be dangerous both in this country and abroad to leap to what may bp the most "economic" solution at any particular time in history at the expense of other social values.
Since the energy and capital-intensive agriculture which is so widely practiced in the United States today trades-off manpower for other inputs, an economic argument might also be made that in the long-run the small family farm may be more efficient than the large-scale mechanized units we have today. This economic argument is much less important than the larger social and philosophical questions, however-the many social advantages of family farms are of great si i fican ce.
Second. such research is needed to advance the science of home food gardening. The Subcommittees found that the only Federal proirnam specifically addressin!T home gardening is within the Bureau of Outdoor Recreation of the Department of the Interior. Considering the value. of this activity for providing high-quality, low-cost food to millions of Americans, for educating numerous citizens in the science and the art of agriculture, and for instilling an increased respect for the sources of our country's abundant food supplies, the agricultural research community should recognize this opportunity to contribute actively to a larger effort.
Third, this type of agricultural research may provide one of the most effective means for solving "the world food problem." The farms in most other countries, particularly in the less developed countries
where food problems are most acute, are very small by American standards. It is inconceivable that large-scale, mechanized agriculture can be transferred in toto to small farms abroad due simply to economic, social and technological barriers. This is true for many of the same reasons discussed above with regard to small American farmers, and also for reasons unique to the particular countries themselves.
There are methods and techniques of small-scale, high-yielding agriculture which are available today both here and abroad. Some of these intensive techniques are much more productive per unit of land than the large-scale, U.S. agriculture, since other inputs are traded-off in favor of the farmer's labor. The transfer of such technology and the vigorous pursuit of other new technologies for these purposes are essential for meeting future U.S. and world food needs and for advancing the prospects of world peace.
5. Research on climate and weather prediction and modification and information 8ystems.-Despite the increased sophistication and advanced techniques of modern agriculture, our food supply is still highly dependent on climate and weather. In fact climate and weather are perhaps the most influential factors in the production of food, yet the current level of research effort does not adequately reflect this dependence. Increased efforts are required to reduce the vulnerability of our agricultural system to weather fluctuations and climatic changes.
Furthermore, such information must be made easily and readily available to the farmer so that he will be able to minimize some of the effects of climate and weather and by doing so minimize the risk of a poor crop. More extensive interaction between the Extension Service and the Weather Service might be a logical first step to accomplish this.
6. A complete inventory of sodl and water resources is required to provide a data base for other research and for policymakinq.-The
demands on land and water by agriculture, industry, housing and recreation require wise land-use planning in order to assure adequate food supplies in the future. Useful planning requires knowledge of what land and water resources are available and what the production potentials are in various areas of the country.
Remote sensing, computers and other advanced technologies offer new opportunities for the completion of on-going inventories and the development of world-wide inventory systems. Maximum coordination between the agencies involved in satellite technology, data gathering, and information dissemination both in the U.S. and abroad is vital to the success of this system.
THE ROLE OF THE BASIC RESEARCH PROGRAMS OF TIIE NATIONAL SCIENCE
FOUNDATION WHICH ARE IMPORTANT TO AGRICULTURE
As discussed above much of the basic research which is vital to the nation's agricultural research system is "mission-oriented." For this reason and others the Subcommittees believe that major new investments in this type of research may best be made through the existing USDA-SAES system.
The basic research supported by the National Science Foundation, which is less concerned with problem-solving and more concerned with
the development -of knowledge for its ultimate value, is important to agriculture in that all future advances depend on the solid foundation which such research provides.
The Subcommittees are hopeful that the National Science Foundation will use such funds as are specifically allocated to research on renewable resources in the Research Applied to National Needs program wisely and coordinate these efforts closely with the USDA8. However, while it is not advocated that the NSF specifically allocate funds for basic research in agriculture, it is recommended that the NSF maintain strong programs in those areas of science which are important to agriculture.
In its report accompanying the bill to authorize appropriations to the NSF for fiscal year 1977, the Committee on Science and Technology further recommended that the NSF, through the Committee on Food Research of the Federal Coordinating Council for Science, Engineering and Technology, continually assess the role it should have and the degree of support it should provide in agriculture-related basic research. This role should be consistent with the view that basic research should not be concentrated within the National Science Foundation but that the bulk of it will be assumed by USDA; and also with the view that the NSF does have a balancing role in the entire Federal research and development program.
THE APPROPRIATE "4MIX91 OF RESEARCH STRATEGIES TO ADOPT IN THE
NATIONS, AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH PROGRAMS
The Subcommittees believe that the agricultural research effort in the U.S. has been strongly oriented to a "commodity strategy": that is, one based on incremental but reasonably certain improvements in the production of specific commodities. Although this approach has served the country well in the past and has produced some substantial improvements in agricultural productivity, a number of commodities may be rapidly approaching their limits insofar as substantial increases in yields within the existing technological framework are concerned. It now appears that major increases in productivity will only be obtained through major breakthroughs in agricultural research.
The USDA is, in its own words, aware that "therm would be better chances for achieving the big breakthroughs" under a "functionaldiscipline" strategy. This strategy recognizes that the same basic knowledge in a particular discipline, or the same basic functions, apply to a whole range of commodities or applications, frequently in a very similar manner. Such a strategy does, however, have a number of drawbacks and disadvantages.
In the Subcommittees' judgment, the USDA should undertake couirageously the risks which may be associated with such a researchstrateg. especially in situations in which the prospects for significant product improvement appear martrimil. It is important to determine how widely such an approach should be adopted by the agricultural research community.
EVALUATION OF TIHE SCIENTIFIC BASES UPON WHICH LAWS AND
REGULATIO-NS AFFECTING AGRICULTURE ARE MADE
Much of the money available for agricultural research in both the public and private sectors is used for meeting the requirements for
nutrient labelling, food and human safety, pollution prevention, and so forth in order to meet the standards set by law and by regulatory agencies. The Subcommittees believe that such regulations are made with the best interests of the American people in mind, and that the research done to satisfy these requirements is valuable and deserves the emphasis which it is currently receiving.
However, in order to make the best use of the limited funds available for research, it is extremely important, as new scientific information is accumulated relevant to existing or potential regulatory actions, that these regulations be re-evaluated in the context of the most recent and accurate scientific information. The Congress and the regulatory agencies need to be kept informed of such advances or changes in existing knowledge which might affect decision making and the revisions of regulations or statutes.
IMPROVED COMMUNICATIONS AMO-G RESEARCHERS, THE USERS OF
AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH AND THE CONSUMER
As discussed in preceding sections, communication among the various organizations performing agricultural research is extremely important for optimum expenditure of research funds and the avoidance of unnecessary duplication of effort. Communication with the world outside agricultural research is also essential to the agricultural research scientist, and the Subcommittees believe that ways to improve these channels of communication must be continually sought. Such outside audiences include other scientists not directly involved in agricultural research, farmers and businessmen who are the users of agricultural research, and the general public which is the ultimate consumer of the products of agricultural research.
The Cooperative Extension Service, which is an integral part of the agricultural research system, has been very effective in promoting the much needed communication between agricultural researchers, and industry, farmers and consumers. The Subcommittees believe that the Extension Service has been perhaps one of the greatest strengths of the total system. and that it should be considered a potential model for other information dissemination schemes.
In addition, agricultural scientists communicate with the scientific community at large through mutual participation in professional societies and through publication in scientific journals. Numerous informal contacts among scientists also provide very important
In this final category of findings on the ability of the present agricultural research system to meet future U.S. and world food needs, the Subcomnmittees believe that the following should be carefully considered:
TIE EXTENT AND LEVEL OF SUPPORT FOR INTERDISCIPLINARY EFFORTS,
ESPECIALLY THOSE INVOLVING AGRICULTURAL SCIENTISTS AND BASIC
RESEARCIJERS OUTSIDE THlE AGRICULTURAL RESEA RC I SYST'E1"3
Efforts to bring together scientists from within and outside the agricultural research system and from a variety of disciplines related to agriculture should )e encouraged and supported through the poli-
cies of the Federal agencies which fund agricultural research. The Subcommittees expect that many of these interdisciplinary linkages would naturally evolve, but they also believe that the existence -,of funds to support such efforts would hasten this process substantially.
Workshops, conferences, symposia, and research projects involving a broad range of scientists can contribute greatly to the growth of individual scientists and to the reservoir of scientific knowledge. Additional investment in these types of activities by the Federal government would be small in comparison to the potential benefits; hence the need for such additional funds should be determined.
AVAILABILITY AND UTILIZATION OF THE OUTPUT OF MAJOR CONFERENCES
RELATING TO AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH NEWES
The Subcommittees were favorably disposed toward the concern of the Agricultural Research Policy Advisory Committee to involve a broad range of groups and organizations with interests in food supply and consumption in the formulation of priorities for agricultural, research. This concern was especially evident in ARPAC's having c .onvened a nattional working conference' on research to meet U.S. and world food -needs in Kansas City, Missouri on July 9-11, 1975.
The results of major conferences such as these may be very valuable. but only if they are widely disseminated among the vario us agri cultral research organizations and considered in terms of their applicability to and the implications for current and future research programs. The use of these results is the oniy acceptable justification for holding such a conference.
At this time the follow-up on the Kansas City conference, which is being carried out by two committees appointed by the ARPAC cochairmen, appears to be quite good. The degree to which those directly involved with the formulation of agricultural research 'Policies use the results should be observed.
PARTICIPATION BY ORGANIZATIONS OUTSIDE THE USDA-SAES SYS&M IN
RESEARCH AND EXTENSION ADVISORY COMMITEES
The involvement of individuals outside the agricultural researchsystem will no doubt bring fresh insights into the need of the users, of agricultural research and the consumers of its products. Where possible and appropriate the agricultural research community might 'extend invitations to selected representatives of farmers' organization s and consumer groups to participate in meetings of their advisory committees. The Subcommittees believe that such involvement is desirable bo th for maintaining a research system which is responsive to the needs of the community it serves and for promoting a better understanding within that community of the problems that can or cannot be solved by agricultural research.
PREPARATION OF FINAL REPORT
The final report of the Subcommittees on the subject of agricultural research and development will contain a comprehensive review of the major aspects of the U.S. agricultural research system based on the voluminous testimony and supplemental material which was made available to the Subcommittees; it will also contain further findings in accordance with a detailed analysis of the record, and the advice, opinions or additional information which the Subcommittees receive in response, to this Interim Report.
A major portion of the final report will detail the funding patterns and the relationships between the sources of support for food-related agricultural research and the performers of that research. The goal s and priorities of agricultural research within the public and private sectors and the policy controls on food-related agricultural research will be examined in some depth.
An analysis of the problems identified and the recommendations made by the witnesses with regard to the present agricultural research system will also comprise a significant portion of the final report. Extensive appendices will be provided which deal with the following topics: a chronology of major events affecting food-related agricultural research, examples of some on-going research projects in agriculture, lists of the universities and colleges texnivlivolved in agricultural research, and the particulars of the special oversight hearings on agricultural research and development held by the Subcommittees.
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