Research and Development by
Specific Budget Function
The total R&D budget authority request for national defense (function 050) in 1998 is $38.7 billion, which would be a decrease of $0.3 billion-or 1 percent-from estimated 1997 levels. This function consists of the DOD's research, development, test, and evaluation (RDT&E) programs and the atomic energy defense activities of DOE (table 6). The defense function accounts for 54 percent of the total Federal proposed R&D funding in 1998-16 percentage points less than the 1986 share (chart 4). Selected defense changes proposed for R&D funding in FY 1998 are highlighted below.
- R&D funds for all of DOD's mission areas are proposed to decrease by nearly 1 percent to $36.4 billion and account for 93 percent of 1998 defense R&D budget authority. DOE's defense R&D programs are proposed to drop by 2 percent to $2.4 billion.
- Proposed budget authority for defense basic research is $1.2 billion, close to the FY 1996 level. However, defense accounts for a smaller share of the total basic research total in FY 1998 (7.8 percent of total) than it did in FY 1990 (8.5 percent of total).
- Of the three armed services, only the Air Force will receive an increase in RDT&E funding. The Air Force is slated to increase 4 percent, while the Navy and the Army will drop 3 percent and 8 percent, respectively. Hardest hit are the Navy's programs for operational systems development- down 19 percent or $0.4 billion, the Army's programs for advanced technology development- down 38 percent or $0.3 billion, and the Air Force's programs for management support- down 21 percent or $0.2 billion (table 7).
- R&D programs within DOD's Defense Agencies are proposed to decrease by 2 percent to $9 billion, which reverses the 1997 gain of more than 1 percent over 1996 levels. The Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) will account for 53 percent of the R&D programs within the Defense Agencies. The budget request for the R&D portion of DARPA will increase 3 percent to $2.2 billion. DARPA serves as the central R&D organization in DOD with a primary responsibility to maintain U.S. technological superiority over potential adversaries. BMDO will show a 23.5-percent drop in funds to $2.6 billion. BMDO funds programs in national missile defenses and in theater missile defenses. The agency also is responsible for the continuing research and development of follow-on technologies that are relevant for long-term ballistic missile defense.
- Among DOE's atomic energy defense activities, the largest reduction is proposed for naval reactors development, whose R&D funding will decrease $43 million to about $580 million in FY 1998. Other reductions are planned for environmental restoration and waste management, down $29 million to about $170 million. Small increases are proposed for R&D related to nuclear safeguards and security-up 10 percent to $23 million.
The administration proposes a 2-percent increase for R&D health programs (function 550). The proposed $13 billion 1998 health total accounts for 39.5 percent of all Federal nondefense R&D. Although the total budget authority has been increasing, the health share has been fairly stable over the last 10 years, maintaining above a third of the total nondefense R&D (chart 5).
The Department of Health and Human Services, (HHS) funds all R&D classified for health care services and health research (subfunctions 551 and 552); R&D funding for consumer and occupational health and safety (subfunction 554) is provided by HHS and the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration. R&D funding proposed in the FY 1998 budget for health provides growth for almost all agencies performing R&D health programs (table 8). Funding decreases are slated for the Health Resources and Services Administration (down 64 percent) due largely to decreases in funding for health professions, education, and training. The Food and Drug Administration is expected to be funded 10 percent below its FY 1997 level, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is expected to be funded at FY 1997 levels. Selected health R&D funding changes are highlighted below.
- The health function accounts for 46 percent of all Federal basic research support. The $7 billion proposed for health-related basic research is 3 percent more than the 1997 level.
- A 3-percent increase-$350 million-is proposed for R&D support to be provided by NIH (table 9). Totaling $12.3 billion, these programs would account for 95 percent of all health R&D funding. The primary mission of NIH is to advance national capabilities for prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease through biomedical and behavioral research. NIH is the principal biomedical research agency of the Federal Government.
- Within NIH, the largest amount of R&D funding is proposed for the National Cancer Institute ($2.0 billion), followed by the Office of AIDS Research, OAR, $1.5 billion. Proposed funding increases for each of these units are nearly 3 percent more than FY 1997 levels. OAR provides pass-through funding to the other NIH Institutes for AIDS research. OAR dollars for FYs 1996 and 1997 have been adjusted in this report for comparability by collecting AIDS funds under the OAR line item. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute is the third largest funded Institute, slated for $1.4 billion (2.5 percent more than 1997 levels).
- With few exceptions, each of the 19 Institutes and Centers comprising NIH will increase between 2 and 9 percent over FY 1997 funding levels. With support from the Administration, the National Center for Human Genome Research became an institute in January 1997 and renamed the National Human Genome Research Institute. NIH expects to increase the new institute's funding by 8.5 percent, up $15 million over the FY 1997 level. R&D for the NIH Director's Office is proposed to decrease by 7 percent to $220 million. Within the Director's Office, Women's Health Initiative will receive a 4-percent decrease in R&D funding, while funding for the Minority Health Initiative will increase only 1 percent over the FY 1997 levels.
- Consumer and occupational health and safety (subfunction 554) is slated to be funded at 10 percent below the FY1997 level. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) accounts for 98 percent of these funds. FDA activities are directed toward protecting the health of the Nation against impure and unsafe food, drugs and cosmetics, and other potential hazards.
Space Research and Technology
NASA funds all R&D that is specifically budgeted in space flight, research, and supporting activities (subfunction 252). NASA conducts research for the solution of problems of flight within and outside the Earth's atmosphere and develops, constructs, tests, and operates aeronautical and space vehicles. R&D budget authority is proposed to increase by nearly 3 percent in 1998 to $8 billion and account for 11 percent of total Federal R&D funds. As recently as 1986, space accounted for a 5-percent share of the R&D total. The space share has been steadily increasing over the last ten years. Selected space research and technology R&D funding changes are highlighted below:
- Four of NASA's science programs-Space Station, Space Science, MPTE, and Space Transportation Technology-will comprise 88 percent or $7 billion of the total space R&D budget authority in FY 1998 (table 10).
- NASA's biggest funded activity, the Space Station program (which includes Russia as a partner) is slated for an 8-percent increase in R&D to $2.4 billion in FY 1998, and would account for 30 percent of total space R&D budget authority. The Space Station is planned to be a permanent outpost in space where humans would live and work productively for extended periods of time. The intent is to provide an advanced research laboratory to explore space and employ its resources, as well as the opportunity to learn to build, operate, and maintain systems in space.
- Space science, having the second largest budget ($2.3 billion, which is 3 percent more than the FY 1997 funding level) of the four categories, is the portion of the NASA budget devoted to expanding knowledge of the Earth, the solar system, and the universe beyond. The budget request includes funds to continue development of the Advanced X-Ray Astrophysics Facility, which is scheduled for launch in 1998. The Cassini program is also funded under space science. The Cassini mission will explore the gaseous outer planets such as Saturn and Jupiter and is scheduled for launch in the Fall of 1997. Other programs include the Mars Surveyor, New Millennium Spacecraft, and Discovery.
- MTPE will receive a 4-percent ($62 million) increase in funding to $1.6 billion in FY 1998. MTPE programs include the earth observing system satellites and information system, the Landsat satellite, and various scientific research and data analysis activities. This activity includes the study of global climate change and integrated functioning of the Earth as a system.
- The Space Transportation Technology program is slated to get an 8-percent ($51 million) increase in funding to $0.7 billion. This initiative provides for planning and assessing technology development requirements.
Research activities in general science (subfunction 251), of which 94 percent are basic research, are funded by NSF and DOE. Total research support in general science is proposed to increase by 4 percent in 1998 to $3 billion. Of this research total, 76 percent are slated for NSF and 24 percent are for DOE. Selected general science changes proposed for R&D funding in FY 1998 are highlighted below.
- NSF is to receive $2.3 billion in research budget authority, an increase of $90 million, or 4 percent, more than the 1997 funding level. Funding increases are proposed for all seven of NSF's research directorates (table 11).
- Funds for mathematics and physical sciences (MPS) will increase by 3 percent (a $19-million increase over 1997) and will account for 30 percent-$693 million-of the proposed NSF research budget authority. Through its MPS, NSF provides about two-thirds of the Federal support for ground-based astronomy and nearly half of all Federal support of academic research in the mathematical sciences.
- The Engineering Directorate is proposed to experience the third largest absolute increase, up $12 million to $359 million. Of this total, $66 million is proposed for more than 20 Engineering Research Centers and more than 50 State Industry/ University Cooperative Research Centers for which NSF provides funding. Overall, NSF provides about 33 percent of the total support for engineering research at U.S. universities and colleges.
- A 1-percent increase is proposed for NSF's Geosciences Directorate bringing its funding to $425 million in 1998. This will provide about 50 percent of Federal support for basic research in atmospheric sciences. Through this Directorate, NSF serves as the principal source of Federal funding for university-based fundamental research in the geosciences.
- Expecting to get the largest absolute increase, NSF's Computer and Information Science and Engineering Directorate is to receive $25 million more for research in 1998, a 10-percent increase. This Directorate provides more than 50 percent of all Federal support for fundamental research in computer science at universities and colleges.
- The Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences Directorate is scheduled to get $7 million (up 7 percent) more than its FY 1997 funding level. This Directorate supports 80 percent of federally funded basic research in anthropological archeology and more than one-third in economics. The Directorate also funds multidisciplinary research on topics including human capital, learning and intelligent systems, decision making related to risk, and the use of digital libraries.
- General science programs at DOE are to increase by 5 percent to $739 million. Research in high energy physics programs is to increase by 6 percent, or $28 million. Nuclear physics research funding is expected to rise 3 percent, or $7 million.
Three agencies provide support for R&D activities in energy (function 270): DOE, which provides 94 percent of the funding in this area; the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA); and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). Total energy R&D budget authority is proposed to be $2.2 billion in 1998, a 1-percent decrease from the FY 1997 level. Selected energy R&D funding changes are highlighted below.
- DOE's energy budget is proposed to decrease about 3 percent, to $2.1 billion in 1998. Energy budgets for TVA will increase 73 percent to $71 million. NRC is slated to be funded 5 percent below its FY 1997 level of $57 million (table 12). Overall funding for energy-related basic research is proposed to reach $1.3 billion, an 8-percent gain.
- Proposed 1998 R&D budget authority for DOE's fossil fuel programs is expected to decrease drastically below the FY 1997 levels due to a proposal to cancel nearly $300 million in unspent, previously appropriated funds for the Clean Coal Technology Program.
- R&D on energy conservation is proposed to increase 20 percent, or $63 million, to $0.4 billion. Programs under this subfunction category include R&D support for building, industrial, and transportation technologies.
- A 32-percent increase is proposed for solar and renewable energy research (including solar energy, hydrogen research, geothermal energy, hydropower, and electric energy)-to $0.3 billion in 1998.
- Basic energy sciences, which support both research and scientific facilities, are to receive a $28 million, or a 5-percent increase to $593 million. Included in this funding category are materials and chemical sciences, engineering and geosciences, energy biosciences, and equipment and construction projects.
- DOE's biological and environmental research programs promote the development and application of biotechnology to improve health and protect the environment. Proposed R&D in this area is to increase 9.5 percent to $349 million. Research on the Human Genome is to account for 24 percent of this total.
- The computational and technology research account, created in FY 1997 out of components of basic energy science, technology transfer, and magnetic fusion accounts, is to increase 12 percent from $152 million in FY 1997 to $170 million in FY 1998.