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effectiveness of the Data Tables

Like many research organizations, NICHD must balance funding for current research with investments in training and career development to build the capacity needed to sustain science in the future. In considering this delicate balance, the Task Force reviewed data on training efforts at other NIH Institutes and Centers (ICs), assessed the historical record, reflected on the current and future conditions in the biomedical research workforce, and took into account the breadth of the NICHD mission and the range of specialized skills needed to sustain the NICHD mission. In FY 2014, the NICHD spent slightly less than 6 percent of its overall funding on extramural training and career development, consistent with the historical levels of from 4.8 to 7.0 percent over the past 30 years. NICHD’s budget share for training and career development is similar to levels in comparably-sized NIH ICs such as the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), and the National Institute of Digestive Diseases and Kidney Disorders (NIDDK). Like all of NICHD’s expenditures, funding for training and career development increased dramatically during the NIH “doubling period” from 1998 to 2003, but then decreased. Over the past 10 years, NICHD training and career development expenditures have decreased by about one-third in inflation-adjusted dollars, largely reducing (although not entirely eliminating) the increases of the doubling period. The Task Force recognized the importance of training and career development to the NICHD mission and the opportunities these programs offer to attract and retain excellent scientists. Maintaining the current level of training and career development support – or even providing for a modest increase when fiscally possible – will help ensure the future of the scientific enterprise.