WASHINGTON--Deputy Director John Moore has left the National Science Foundation to become professor of economics and director of the International Institute at nearby George Mason University. His decision, in addition to creating a vacancy that President Bush must fill, may force the administration to speed up its timetable for deciding who will lead the science foundation in the 1990s.

Moore, 54, holds an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering and a Ph.D. in economics. The former associate director of the Hoover Institute, Moore was appointed to NSF in 1985 by President Reagan, who in 1982 had selected him to serve on the National Science Board. His move to George Mason will keep intact Moore's ties to many of the conservative figures that have set the agenda for both Republican administrations in the 1980s. At the same time, it gives the White House a chance to put its own stamp on NSF:...

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