Action to protect research funding on Capitol Hill and within federal agencies

An increased number of psychologists stood up for the discipline, protecting funding for research and educating policymakers on psychology’s contributions to society.

Securing funding for psychological research and training psychologists to advocate on the discipline’s behalf were again priorities for the Science Directorate in 2012. Staff prepared testimony in support of the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and other agencies that support psychological research.

APA also commented on a number of government initiatives that will strengthen the research infrastructure, including the reorganization of substance use research and the diversity of the biomedical workforce at NIH, a national plan for Alzheimer’s research and research methodology at the new Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute created under the Affordable Care Act.

APA continued to train psychologists to advocate for research in a variety of settings, including outreach to the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology; a focused in-house training for the Committee on Animal Research and Ethics in opposition to the Great Ape Protection Act; lobby days on Capitol Hill with coalitions supporting aging and children’s research; and Internet-based training to help prevent across-the-board spending cuts.

Additionally, APA member scientists presented research on Capitol Hill on diverse topics including developmental consequences associated with the use of social media in middle school children, HIV and substance use, PTSD in women veterans, interventions for pediatric traumatic brain injury and language impairment with Down Syndrome.