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AAUP Condemns Limits on NSF Spending for Political-Science Research

The American Association of University Professors on Thursday objected to legislation, recently signed into law by President Obama, that includes limits on the National Science Foundation’s spending on political-science research.

In a written statement, the group called efforts by politicians to restrict research in certain disciplines “misguided,” saying that such actions threatened “the integrity of the rigorous scientific-review process used by federal agencies to fund research that advances knowledge.”

The limits were imposed as an amendment to a spending bill passed by Congress last month.

The measure restricts the National Science Foundation’s ability to approve grants for political-science research, unless that research is deemed to promote national security or the economic interests of the United States.

The AAUP called on Congress to “respect the importance of scientific peer review that is free of political constraints to the advancement of knowledge and is essential to a democratic society.”

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