Gains and losses mostly single-digit Essay

The fiscal year 1986 budget proposal is not bullish on social andbehavioral research, but it does contain some individual fundingincreases. The total budget for the Alcohol, Durg Abuse and Mental HealthAdministration is slated for a 4 percent cut from FY ’85, to $886million. Research, however, would be largely spared. The Presidentwants a 5 percent raise for drug abuse research, to $68.5 million andalso nearly 5 percent more for alcohol-related research, to $52.

6million. Mental health research would drop by 2 percent, to $191million. In a replay of an unsuccessful attempt last year, theadministration wants to cut all funds for training mental healthclinicians and operating mental health screening programs. St.

Elizabeths Hospital, a federal mental institution in Washington, D.C.,would receive $42.

4 million, a drop of about $6 million, in a continuingeffort to transfer responsibility for its financial survival to theDistrict. But at the National Science Foundation (NSF), support for socialand economic sciences would jump 19 percent over FY ’85, to $34million. The money is aimed largely at promoting economics research toaid political decision-making. Cognitive science — particularlyresearch on teaching and learning processes — and anthropologicalresearch would receive slight increases, to $11 million and $7.3 millionrespectively. As with the FY ’85 budget, only 5 percent of the NSFtotal would be directed toward social and behavioral work.

Cuts of about 7 percent are proposed for two institutes within theNational Institutes of Health that fund behavioral research on aging andchild health. Money for these projects will be divvied up after a finalbudget is approved.

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