New NSF Structure Reflects Broad Agency Reorientation

Date: March 16, 1992 Revamping of the biology directorate and creation of a social sciences unit aims to accommodate new trends in life sciences When Cora Bagley Marrett assumes full duties in May as the first assistant director of the new social, behavioral, and economic sciences division (SBE) of the National Science Foundation, she will give social scientists something for which they have long lobbied: their own voice in high-level NSF decisions. NSF announced the new directorate last Oc

Scott Huler
Mar 15, 1992

Date: March 16, 1992

Revamping of the biology directorate and creation of a social sciences unit aims to accommodate new trends in life sciences

When Cora Bagley Marrett assumes full duties in May as the first assistant director of the new social, behavioral, and economic sciences division (SBE) of the National Science Foundation, she will give social scientists something for which they have long lobbied: their own voice in high-level NSF decisions.

NSF announced the new directorate last October, following the recommendations of a task force that spent a year studying ways to improve the former biological and social sciences directorate (The Scientist, Oct. 28, 1991, page 3). The task force overwhelmingly suggested that it was time to end the uneasy marriage between the social and biological sciences, sending such social sciences as anthropology, political science, economics, and psychology into their own directorate.

Under the new structure, Marrett, a professor...

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