In January 2018, the presidents of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine issued a formal statement on Political Review of Scientific Proposals, which read in part:

The highest standards of scientific integrity, transparency, and accountability are critical to maintaining public confidence in our nation’s research enterprise and in the wise use of the public investment in research. The public expects policymakers and agencies to base those investments on independent advice and assessment from unbiased experts without political interference.

These same standards and expectations apply to ongoing peer-reviewed federal research grants. To ensure that U.S. citizens receive optimal benefit from public dollars invested in federal research, the decision to award such grants must rely exclusively on an objective and independent peer-review process. Likewise, the decision to terminate any such peer-reviewed federal research grant prior to its expected date of completion must depend on a thorough, objective, and transparent review of scientific and administrative performance. Such a review should be strictly independent and insulated against political pressure in order to uphold the integrity of the scientific process and maintain public trust in federal research.

— Victor J. Dzau, MD, President, National Academy of Medicine

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