AADR Selects University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Dentistry Student for Gert Quigley Fellowship

AADR is pleased to announce the selection of Tanner Godfrey from the University of Alabama Birmingham School of Dentistry as the 2017-18 Gert Quigley Fellow. Mr. Godfrey is currently enrolled in the DMD/PhD program and is the Secretary of the AADR National Student Research Group (NSRG). Mr. Godfrey is the recipient of numerous research awards including the inaugural IADR 3MT and the AADR Student Research Award. He was also a finalist in the AADR Hatton competition. In 2015, Mr. Godfrey received his B.S. in biochemistry at Utah State University.  In his application for the fellowship, Mr. Godfrey noted, “At the completion of my dual training, I have the ultimate career goal of becoming a clinician-scientist. There are many different roles involved in research and academics, one of which is advocacy. Without proper advocacy for the dental research field, awareness of the importance of this research and subsequent funding would be in increased danger. In order to be a leader and valuable member of the dental research field, I feel it is critical to learn the workings of the U.S. government and how to promote dental research. The Gert Quigley Fellowship would serve as an unmatchable experience for gaining this knowledge, and would be extremely valuable to my future success.”

 

The Gert Quigley Public Policy Fellowship provides a unique learning experience both in Washington, DC and through grassroots efforts at the participants local university or institution. This fellowship is designed to familiarize dental school, Ph.D., or dual degree students with the federal legislative process as it relates to basic and translational dental and craniofacial research, as well as research on the oral health care delivery system. Applications for the 2018-19 Gert Quigley Public Policy Fellowship will be available in March 2018.

Elsevier report: Women make gains in global research representation

A recent report on gender representation in the global research workforce by information analytics company Elsevier showed that participation by women is increasing but some gender gaps still exist. Authors of the report, Gender in the Global Research Landscape, used a variety of metrics to compare the participation of women between 1996-2000 and 2011-2015. The report was released at an event in Washington, DC on March 31.

Authors of the report determined gender representation by looking at authors within the Scopus database of scholarly journal articles and using a gender disambiguation algorithm to predict the gender of each author. However, the algorithm was unable to predict the genders of names from Asian or African countries with satisfactory probability. Therefore, the report does not include data from any African countries and only includes data from Japan for the Asian continent. Attendees of the Washington, DC event were concerned about the exclusion of US researchers of Asian or African descent, especially since Asians make up a large share of the US research workforce. Because Elsevier does not collect data related to race or ethnicity, researchers could not address this issue but emphasized that the algorithm did predict the genders of 80% of US researchers.

The major finding of the report was that representation of women in research increased by many metrics. There was greater overall representation of women in all countries and regions analyzed. According to Elsevier researchers, gender balance is achieved when women comprise 40-60% of any group. By this standard, all countries and regions included in this study reached, surpassed, or were within a few percentage points of gender balance, with the exception of Japan. Women also submitted more patent applications and received a greater share of patents in the later time period than the earlier period.

There were still areas where representation of women lagged. During 2011-2015, women were highly represented in social and life sciences but poorly represented in physical sciences and engineering. Women were less likely to collaborate internationally or across academic and corporate sectors and were less internationally mobile. Men also published more than women, but there was little difference between the scholarly impact of men and women researchers. However, women were more likely to be involved in interdisciplinary research, and interdisciplinary research had lower scholarly impact.

Authors of the report studied representation of women in leadership roles in engineering and nursing by looking at the gender of the first and corresponding authors, positions usually reserved for those holding primary or senior roles on research teams. The share of women in engineering and nursing leadership generally reflected overall gender representation in these fields. However, by the 40-60% rule of gender balance, gender balance in engineering leadership was reached in all countries and regions analyzed except France and Japan. In other words, women senior authors in engineering actually exceeded their overall representation. However, data presented by Dr. Cassidy R. Sugimoto at the release and a study cited in the report showed that women tend to more involved in performing experiments while men are in more senior positions, or as Dr. Sugimoto put it, “Women are the hands of science, while men are asking the questions.”

Authors of the report also analyzed gender representation by disciple based on journals in which authors published. Dentistry had a small share of the research workforce, but the share of women involved in dentistry was similar in most countries and regions examined in 2011-2015, with participation of women between 30-40%. Brazil had the highest representation of women at 55%, and Japan had the lowest at 26%. In the US, women comprised 36% of the dental research workforce over this time period.

Portugal was a particularly bright spot in the report. During 2011-2015, women comprised 49% of Portugal’s research workforce. Portugal had the highest level of women represented in 20 of 27 disciplines. Women were highly represented in areas where their representation is typically low. The report highlights intentional policy moves aimed at achieving gender balance in Portugal, demonstrating that gender balance does not happen by accident and that policies can expedite progress.

The overarching conclusion of the report was that gender representation is improving by many measures, but there is still work to do. While many countries have cleared the first hurdle of balanced gender representation, there are still gains to be made in leadership and collaboration and understanding the policies and social and cultural dynamics that hinder gender progress in those areas. Many event attendees also wondered about representation at the intersection of gender and race, a possible subject for future studies.

Elsevier will hold similar release events on gender and research in Brussels, Belgium on May 12, Tokyo, Japan on May 25-26, and Montreal on November 6-8, 2017.

Find the report, presentations from the March 31 Washington, DC release, and future events here:

Report: https://www.elsevier.com/research-intelligence/campaigns/gender-17

Presentations and Future Events: https://www.elsevier.com/connect/gender-and-science-resource-center#events

FNIDCR Letter Demonstrates Robust Support for NIDCR Funding

Today, in an effort led by AADR, the Friends of National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (FNIDCR) sent a letter signed by 63 organizations, patient advocates and dental schools urging Congress to provide $430.5 million for the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) in the final fiscal year (FY) 2017 appropriation bill and $452 million in FY18. The organizations also urged Congress to oppose President Trump’s FY18 budget request which recommends an unprecedented 20 percent cut to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and a major reorganization of its institutes of centers. They also urged Congress to oppose the Administrations’ recent proposal to cut $1.2 billion from NIH in the current fiscal year to pay for an increase in defense and the wall along the Mexican border.

What is next? The current continuing resolution (CR) expires on April 28th. Congress will either need to pass a short term CR, a long term CR or an omnibus appropriations bill and the President must sign the funding legislation to avert a government shutdown.

AADR and FNIDCR will continue to monitor these developments closely and provide updates to the community as this process unfolds.

NIDCR seeks input on next 15 years of dental, oral and craniofacial research

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) has launched NIDCR 2030, a strategic visioning initiative designed to advance dental, oral and craniofacial research over the next 15 years. The Institute is requesting ideas on how to align oral health research with community needs and promote population health. The NIDCR 2030 team will use these ideas and comments to plan future workshops and research initiatives.

Submitted ideas will be reviewed by subject matter experts for:

  • Innovation
  • Impact on science, health, and health disparities
  • Alignment with NIDCR mission
  • Feasibility
  • Number of votes

When considering themes for potential funding initiatives, NIDCR also takes into account scientific opportunity, robustness of the existing portfolio in the theme area, and the current budgetary climate.

AADR would like to submit input as an organization for consideration by visitors to the NIDCR 2030 website and the NIDCR 2030 team. Please submit ideas to sajiboye@iadr.org April 28, 2017. Thank you for your input.

Science policy analyst featured in New York Times article on March for Science

IADR and AADR Science Policy Analyst, Dr. Seun Ajiboye, was featured in a New York Times article published on April 17 about the upcoming March for Science.

After responding to a survey gathering different viewpoints about the march, Dr. Ajiboye was approached by a columnist for the Science section of the newspaper about using her response in the article. Dr. Ajiboye voiced her support for the march and her hope that the march will result in public support for increased research funding, saying, “People need to be aware that the quality of life and life expectancy they enjoy are largely due to scientific advances and the investment of the U.S. in the sciences.”

The March for Science will be a global event taking place on Saturday, April 22. The main event will take place in Washington, DC, while satellite marches will be held in over 500 cities around the world.

The March for Science: Why Some are Going, and Some Will Sit Out
Michael Roston, New York Times, April 17, 2017

AADR encourages oral health objectives in NIH Nutrition Research Strategic Plan

With the input of AADR members, AADR has submitted comments to the Nutrition Research Task Force to encourage inclusion of oral health objectives in the first institute-wide National Institutes of Health Nutrition Research Strategic Plan. The Strategic Plan will guide a nutrition-focused research agenda for the next 10 years.

Please use the links below to view and vote for the following objectives. Voting will raise the profile and visibility of oral health objectives:

Please feel free to submit additional ideas. The website closes on April 16.

Please click here to view the formal letter submitted on behalf of AADR.

AADR and FNIDCR Oppose the Administration’s Budget Reduction Request for Fiscal Year 2017

Last night, the Trump Administration released a proposal to cut $17.9 billion from non-defense discretionary spending to offset the Administration’s military supplemental request and the proposed wall along the Mexican border in the current fiscal year (FY17). Included in this document obtained by Politico is a proposal to cut $1.2 billion from the National Institutes of Health. Specifically, the Administration proposes $50 million cuts from IDeA grants and reducing research grants by $1.18 billion. AADR and the Friends of NIDCR issued a statement opposing this proposal and urging Congress to reject it.

In addition to the cuts at NIH, of concern to AADR, the Administration proposes the reductions outlined below:

  • -$11 million from the Office of Minority Health
  • -$50 million from the Agency of Health Care Research and Quality
  • -$65 million from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to “eliminate or reduce less effective or duplicative research programs such as the Prevention Research Centers, Climate Change, and Tobacco Prevention Research.”
  • -$50 million to the CDC domestic HIV/AIDS program
  • -$50 million to the Global HIV/AIDS program.
  • -$170 million to the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) health professions programs and the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant’s special projects (SPRANS).
  • -$350 million from the National Science Foundation

It is important to note, this proposal is separate and different from President Trump’s FY18 skinny budget request. “The FY 2017 Reduction Options” released yesterday would cut funding in the current fiscal year after the current continuing resolution expires on April 28th. As of today, it appears that Congress will not support these funding reductions. According to an article in Politico, House appropriations stated this request from the Administration is, “…too late in the process to affect the outcome of the spending legislation for the current fiscal year.”

What’s next? AADR and FNIDCR will continue to advocate that Congress provide predictable, sustained and increased funding for NIH, NIDCR and other oral health programs in the upcoming year.

What can you do? Please click here to either call or email your member of Congress and urge them to reject these cuts.

Questions? Please email any questions or concerns to the AADR Director of Government Affairs Carolyn Mullen at cmullen@aadr.org

President’s FY18 Budget Proposes 20% Cut to NIH

Today, President Trump released a “skinny” budget request for fiscal year 2018. This budget proposes an unprecedented $5.8 billion or 20% cut to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). It also requests a major reorganization of NIH’s Institutes and Centers. AADR and FNIDCR issued a statement today opposing the budget and urged Congress to reject this proposal.

According to the text provided in the budget blueprint, the President’s 2018 Budget:

“Reduces the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) spending relative to the 2017 annualized CR level by $5.8 billion to $25.9 billion. The Budget includes a major reorganization of NIH’s Institutes and Centers to help focus resources on the highest priority research and training activities including: eliminating the Fogarty International Center; consolidating the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality within NIH; and other consolidations and structural changes across NIH organizations and activities. The Budget also reduces administrative costs and rebalances Federal contributions to research funding.”

Additionally, the budget proposes to eliminate $403 million in health professions and nursing training programs. It also proposes to “reform” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through a new $500 million block grant to increase State flexibility and focus on health challenges specific to each state.

At this time, the budget does not provide additional information about the reorganization plan for NIH and what specific programs are eliminated at HRSA or CDC. This information will be made available when a more detailed budget is expected to be released in May, 2017.

 It is important to keep in mind that the President’s budget is a document that outlines the administration’s funding priorities for the upcoming fiscal year and Congress has the authority to approve, reject or modify the recommendations included in the budget.

 What’s Next? AADR and FNIDCR will continue to advocate that Congress provide predictable, sustained and increased funding for NIH, NIDCR and other oral health programs in the upcoming year.

What can you do? Now more than ever you must make your voice heard. While it is unlikely that cuts of this magnitude will become enacted, however if Congress doesn’t hear from dental, oral and craniofacial researchers it will put NIDCR in a precarious position. Please click here to send an email to your member of Congress. Also, invite your member of Congress to tour your laboratory. Congress is less likely to cut funding for programs and research when they better understand its value.

Questions Please email any questions or concerns to the AADR Director of Government Affairs Carolyn Mullen at cmullen@aadr.org

AADR and Friends of NIDCR Submit Written Testimony

Last week, AADR President Dr. Jack Ferracane submitted written testimony on behalf of AADR and the Friends of NIDCR urging Congress to provide at least a $2 billion increase over the FY17 level for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and $452 million for the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research in the fiscal year 2018 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriation bill. Moreover, since the federal government is currently operating under a Continuing Resolution through April 28, 2017, he urged Congress to approve the bi-partisan Senate FY17 LHHS Appropriation bill which includes $34.1 billion for NIH and $430.5 million for NIDCR, immediately. He also noted that with the return of full sequestration next year, AADR and Friends of NIDCR strongly urged Congress from making further reductions in non-defense discretionary programs and work to replace the scheduled sequestration cuts through a package that is balanced—both in how such relief is paid for and how it is applied to non-defense discretionary programs.

IADR/AADR Update President Trump Signs New Executive Order “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States” on March 6, 2017

On March 6, 2017 President Trump signed an executive order entitled, “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States.” The previous Executive Order 13769 signed on January 27, 2017 is effectively replaced with this order. The new Executive Order is effective at 12:01 a.m. eastern daylight time on March 16, 2017.

Specifically, beginning on March 16, 2017, foreign nationals from Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia and Yemen who are outside the United States and did not have a valid visa at 5:00 EST on January 27, 2017 and do not have a valid visa on the effective date of this order are not eligible for entry into the United States for 90 days. Foreign nationals from the six countries listed above who have valid visas will not be affected by this Executive Order. No visas will be revoked solely based on this Executive Order. This order applies to both nationals and citizens of Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.

It is important to note that Iraqi citizens are not affected by this Executive Order.

Also, any individual whose visa was marked revoked or marked canceled as a result of Executive Order 13769 shall be entitled to a travel document confirming that the individual is permitted to travel to the United States and seek entry. Any prior cancellation or revocation of a visa that was solely pursuant to Executive Order 13769 shall not be the basis of inadmissibility for any future determination about entry or admissibility.

The Executive Order does not apply to certain individuals, such as the following:

  • Lawful permanent residents of the United States;
  • Foreign nationals admitted to or paroled into the United States on or after the effective date of the order;
  • Any foreign national who has a document other than a visa, valid on the effective date of this order or issued on any date thereafter, that permits him or her to travel to the United States and seek entry or admission, such as an advance parole document;
  • Dual nationals when travelling on a passport issued by a non-designated country;
  • Foreign nationals traveling on a diplomatic or diplomatic type visa, NATO visa, C-2 visa for travel to the United Nations, G-1, G-2, G-3 or G-4 visas; and
  • Any foreign national who has been granted asylum; any refugee who has already been admitted to the United States or any individual who has been granted withholding of removal, advance parole or protection under the Convention Against Torture.

The Department of Homeland Security and the Department of State have the discretionary authority, on a case-by-case basis to issue visas or allow the entry of nationals of these six countries into the United States when a national from one of the countries demonstrates that the denial of entry would cause undue hardship, that his or her entry would not pose a threat to national security and that his or her entry would be in the national interest. One of the areas suggested for consideration of a waiver include, “The foreign national seeks to enter the United States for a significant business or professional obligation and the denial of entry during the suspension period would impair those obligations.”

The Department of State will restrict the Visa Interview Waiver Program and require additional nonimmigrant visa applicants to undergo an in-person interview.

What does this mean? This new Executive Order replaces the previous order signed on January 27, 2017 which is currently undergoing litigation in the U.S. Court system. As of March 6, 2017 it is unclear how the U.S. courts will respond to this new Executive Order.

What is the IADR/AADR Position? While the new Executive Order clarifies that current visa holders are allowed to travel to the United States, IADR/AADR remain concerned that this Executive Order will have a negative impact on the global scientific community. These Executive Orders have a direct impact on the IADR General Session in San Francisco, California scheduled for March 2017. Specifically, by restricting the movement of scientists and exchange of research findings, they will impair IADR and AADR’s ability to achieve its mission of advancing research and increasing knowledge for the improvement of oral health worldwide.

As we strive towards our mission, IADR and AADR are committed to our diverse membership and will always be an inclusive community of dental, oral and craniofacial researchers for membership, meetings and our publications. We will continue to work with Congress and the Administration so they better understand the detrimental impact policies such as these have on the exchange of information and the scientific enterprise at large.

 

For More Information:

Click here to read the new Executive Order signed on March 6, 2017

Click here to read a fact sheet authored by the Trump Administration and obtained by the Washington Post