FYI is an objective, authoritative digest of science policy developments in Washington impacting the physical science community.

In a new executive order, President Obama has directed federal agencies and the White House to focus on national preparedness for space weather, calling it an “all-of-nation endeavor.”

19 Oct 2016

Rep. Bill Foster (D-IL), Congress’s only physicist member, is leading a group of 38 House Democrats in asking the House Rules Committee to withdraw a recent rule change that permitted House committees to delegate their subpoena authority to their chairs. Among their objections, critics of this unilateral authority argue it is being used to harass scientific researchers.

18 Oct 2016

In a new report, the American Physical Society, the American Chemical Society, and the Materials Research Society recommend actions that the U.S. government and scientific societies should take to make researchers less vulnerable to liquid helium price increases, price volatility, and supply interruptions—all of which could be exacerbated by the impending closure of the Federal Helium Reserve. 

14 Oct 2016

On Oct. 5 and 6, a National Academies committee studying NASA’s large strategic science missions held a meeting at which NASA officials and current and former congressional staff members presented. Committee members and presenters confronted pressing questions concerning what role the missions play in accomplishing the agency’s science goals and in sustaining broader scientific communities.

13 Oct 2016

A report published by the U.N. Scientific Advisory Board on Sept. 18 finds a need for greater integration of science into international decision-making. It also calls on the U.N. to establish international targets for national R&D funding, which the board argues will contribute to meeting U.N. sustainable development goals. 

7 Oct 2016