Simple Language: Just What We Ordered

It isn't often that a magazine gets to crow about the fact that something its editor suggested in its pages was put into action, especially by a large bureaucratic agency like the National Institutes of Health.

Ivan Oransky
Apr 24, 2005

It isn't often that a magazine gets to crow about the fact that something its editor suggested in its pages was put into action, especially by a large bureaucratic agency like the National Institutes of Health. So we're going to quite boldly take that opportunity.

In December 2003, editor Richard Gallagher proposed that "It would be very useful if NIH applications contained a 100-word, plain-English section called, 'Why this is important to the US taxpayer.' Intelligent, thoughtful discussion might ensue, rather than the situation that we have now – polarization and the entrenchment of a position in some quarters that is best described as: 'No Sex Research, Please! We're American' (17[23]:6 Dec. 1, 2003)." He was writing in exasperation after a budget debate in the US House of Representatives on July 10 of that year in which Rep. Patrick Toomey (R-Pa.) proposed an amendment to defund five NIH grants on...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!
Already a member?