The recommendations in this book focus on changes in NASA policies that would directly reduce or eliminate the cost growth of Earth and space science missions. Large cost growth is a concern for Earth and space science missions, and it can be a concern for other missions as well. If the cost growth is large enough, it can create liquidity problems for NASA's Science Mission Directorate that in turn cause cost profile changes and development delays that amplify the overall cost growth for other concurrent and/or pending missions. Addressing cost growth through the allocation of artificially high reserves is an inefficient use of resources because it unnecessarily diminishes the portfolio of planned flights. The most efficient use of resources is to establish realistic budgets and reserves and effective management processes that maximize the likelihood that mission costs will not exceed reserves. NASA is already taking action to reduce cost growth; additional steps, as recommended herein, will help improve NASA's mission planning process and achieve the goal of ensuring frequent mission opportunities for NASA Earth and space science.
The prevailing messages throughout the seminar series as demonstrated by the lectures in this book are how much we have accomplished over the past 50 years, how profound are our discoveries, how much contributions from the space program affect our daily lives, and yet how much remains to be done. The age of discovery in space and Earth science is just beginning. Opportunities abound that will forever alter our destiny.
While the R&A program is essential to the development and support of NASA's diverse set of space and Earth science missions, defining and articulating an appropriate scale for mission-enabling activities have posed a challenge throughout NASA's history. This volume identifies the appropriate roles for mission-enabling activities and metrics for assessing their effectiveness. Furthermore, the book evaluates how, from a strategic perspective, decisions should be made about balance between mission-related and mission-enabling elements of the overall program as well as balance between various elements within the mission-enabling component. Collectively, these efforts will help SMD to make a good program even better.
Plutonium-238 does not occur in nature. The committee does not believe that there is any additional 238Pu (or any operational 238Pu production facilities) available anywhere in the world.The total amount of 238Pu available for NASA is fixed, and essentially all of it is already dedicated to support several pending missions--the Mars Science Laboratory, Discovery 12, the Outer Planets Flagship 1 (OPF 1), and (perhaps) a small number of additional missions with a very small demand for 238Pu. If the status quo persists, the United States will not be able to provide RPSs for any subsequent missions.
This report evaluates the plan for NASA's biotechnology facility on the ISS and the scientific context that surrounds it, and makes recommendations on how the facility can be made more effective. In addition to questions about optimizing the instrumentation, the report addresses strategies for enhancing the scientific impact and improving the outreach to mainstream terrestrial biology. No major redirection of effort is called for, but collectively the specific, targeted changes recommended by the task group would have a major effect on the conduct of biotechnology research in space.
This volume reviews the organization, activities, and reports of the SSB for the year 2010.
Pathways to Exploration explores the case for advancing this endeavor, drawing on the history of rationales for human spaceflight, examining the attitudes of stakeholders and the public, and carefully assessing the technical and fiscal realities. This report recommends maintaining the long-term focus on Mars as the horizon goal for human space exploration. With this goal in mind, the report considers funding levels necessary to maintain a robust tempo of execution, current research and exploration projects and the time/resources needed to continue them, and international cooperation that could contribute to the achievement of spaceflight to Mars. According to Pathways to Exploration, a successful U.S. program would require sustained national commitment and a budget that increases by more than the rate of inflation.
In reviving a U.S. human exploration program capable of answering the enduring questions about humanity's destiny beyond our tiny blue planet, the nation will need to grapple with the attitudinal and fiscal realities of the nation today while staying true to a small but crucial set of fundamental principles for the conduct of exploration of the endless frontier. The recommendations of Pathways to Exploration provide a clear map toward a human spaceflight program that inspires students and citizens by furthering human exploration and discovery, while taking into account the long-term commitment necessary to achieve this goal.
Review of the Department of Defense Test Protocols for Combat Helmets considers the technical issues relating to test protocols for military combat helmets. At the request of the DOD Director of Operational Test and Evaluation, this report evaluates the adequacy of the Advanced Combat Helmet test protocol for both first article testing and lot acceptance testing, including its use of the metrics of probability of no penetration and the upper tolerance limit (used to evaluate backface deformation). The report evaluates appropriate use of statistical techniques in gathering data; adequacy of current helmet testing procedures; procedures for the conduct of additional analysis of penetration and backface deformation data; and scope of characterization testing relative to the benefit of the information obtained.
Against the back-drop of these stark realities, the Air Force requested the National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academies, under the auspices of the Air Force Studies Board to conduct and in-depth assessment of current and future Air Force weapon system sustainment initiatives and recommended future courses of action for consideration by the Air Force.
Examination of the U.S. Air Force's Aircraft Sustainment Needs in the Future and Its Strategy to Meet Those Needs addresses the following topics:
Assess current sustainment investments, infrastructure, and processes for adequacy in sustaining aging legacy systems and their support equipment. Determine if any modifications in policy are required and, if so, identify them and make recommendations for changes in Air Force regulations, policies, and strategies to accomplish the sustainment goals of the Air Force. Determine if any modifications in technology efforts are required and, if so, identify them and make recommendations regarding the technology efforts that should be pursued because they could make positive impacts on the sustainment of the current and future systems and equipment of the Air Force. Determine if the Air Logistics Centers have the necessary resources (funding, manpower, skill sets, and technologies) and are equipped and organized to sustain legacy systems and equipment and the Air Force of tomorrow. Identify and make recommendations regarding incorporating sustainability into future aircraft designs.
The overall quality of ARL's technical staff and their work continues to be impressive, as well as the relevance of their work to Army needs. ARL continues to exhibit a clear, passionate concern for the end user of its technology--the soldier in the field. While two directorates have large program-support missions, there is considerable customer-support work across the directorates, which universally demonstrate mindfulness of the importance of transitioning technology to support immediate and near-term Army needs. ARL staff also continue to expand their involvement with the wider scientific and engineering community.
This involvement includes monitoring relevant developments elsewhere, engaging in significant collaborative work (including the Collaborative Technology Alliances), and sharing work through peer reviews. In general, ARL is working very well within an appropriate research and development niche and has been demonstrating significant accomplishments.
In late 2011, the United States Congress directed the NASA Office of Inspector General to commission a "comprehensive independent assessment of NASA's strategic direction and agency management." Subsequently, NASA requested that the National Research Council (NRC) conduct this independent assessment. In the spring of 2012, the NRC Committee on NASA's Strategic Direction was formed and began work on its task. The committee determined that, only with a national consensus on the agency's future strategic directionalong the lines described in the full NRC reportcan NASA continue to deliver the wonder, the knowledge, the national security and economic benefits, and the technology that have been typified by its earlier history. NASA's Strategic Direction and the Need for a National Consensus summarizes the findings and recommendations of the committee.
Based on the 2007 book, Earth Science and Applications from Space: National Imperatives for the Next Decade and Beyond, this book explores each of the seventeen recommended missions in detail, identifying launch dates, responsible agencies, estimated cost, scientific and public benefits, and more. Printed entirely in color, the book features rich photographs and illustrations, tables, and graphs that will keep the attention of scientists and non-scientists alike.
Opportunities in Protection Materials Science and Technology for Future Army Applications explores the current theoretical and experimental understanding of the key issues surrounding protection materials, identifies the major challenges and technical gaps for developing the future generation of lightweight protection materials, and recommends a path forward for their development. It examines multiscale shockwave energy transfer mechanisms and experimental approaches for their characterization over short timescales, as well as multiscale modeling techniques to predict mechanisms for dissipating energy. The report also considers exemplary threats and design philosophy for the three key applications of armor systems: (1) personnel protection, including body armor and helmets, (2) vehicle armor, and (3) transparent armor.
Opportunities in Protection Materials Science and Technology for Future Army Applications recommends that the Department of Defense (DoD) establish a defense initiative for protection materials by design (PMD), with associated funding lines for basic and applied research. The PMD initiative should include a combination of computational, experimental, and materials testing, characterization, and processing research conducted by government, industry, and academia.
Flight research is a tool, not a conclusion. It often informs simulation and modeling and wind tunnel testing. Aeronautics research does not follow a linear path from simulation to wind tunnels to flying an aircraft. The loss of flight research capabilities at NASA has therefore hindered the agency's ability to make progress throughout its aeronautics program by removing a primary tool for research.
Recapturing NASA's Aeronautics Flight Research Capabilities discusses the motivation for NASA to pursue flight research, addressing the aspects of the committee's task such as identifying the challenges where research program success can be achieved most effectively through flight research. The report contains three case studies chosen to illustrate the state of NASA ARMD. These include the ERA program and the Fundamental Research Program's hypersonics and supersonics projects. Following these case studies, the report describes issues with the NASA ARMD organization and management and offers solutions. In addition, the chapter discusses current impediments to progress, including demonstrating relevancy to stakeholders, leadership, and the lack of focus relative to available resources.
Recapturing NASA's Aeronautics Flight Research Capabilities concludes that the type and sophistication of flight research currently being conducted by NASA today is relatively low and that the agency's overall progress in aeronautics is severely constrained by its inability to actually advance its research projects to the flight research stage, a step that is vital to bridging the confidence gap. NASA has spent much effort protecting existing research projects conducted at low levels, but it has not been able to pursue most of these projects to the point where they actually produce anything useful. Without the ability to actually take flight, NASA's aeronautics research cannot progress, cannot make new discoveries, and cannot contribute to U.S. aerospace preeminence.
The NRC reviewed various aspects of the NAOMS project, including the survey methodology, and conducted a limited analysis of the publicly available survey data. An Assessment of NASA's National Aviation Operations Monitoring Service presents the resulting analyses and findings.
Transformation in the Air assesses the FAA's plan for research on methods and procedures to improve both confidence in and the timeliness of certification of new technologies for their introduction into the National Airspace System. This report makes recommendations to include both ground and air elements and document the plan's relationship to the other activities and procedures required for certification and implementation into the National Airspace System.
NASA created a set of 14 draft technology roadmaps in 2010 to guide the development of space technologies. In 2015, NASA issued a revised set of roadmaps. A significant new aspect of the update has been the effort to assess the relevance of the technologies by listing the enabling and enhancing technologies for specific design reference missions (DRMs) from the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate and the Science Mission Directorate. NASA Space Technology Roadmaps and Priorities Revisited prioritizes new technologies in the 2015 roadmaps and recommends a methodology for conducting independent reviews of future updates to NASAâ€™s space technology roadmaps, which are expected to occur every 4 years.
Thus, the Department of the Interior\'s (DOI\'s) U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) requested that the National Research Council\'s (NRC\'s) Committee on Implementation of a Sustained Land Imaging Program review the needs and opportunities necessary for the development of a national space-based operational land imaging capability. The committee was specifically tasked with several objectives including identifying stakeholders and their data needs and providing recommendations to facilitate the transition from NASA\'s research-based series of satellites to a sustained USGS land imaging program.
Landsat and Beyond: Sustaining and Enhancing the Nation's Land Imaging Program is the result of the committee\'s investigation. This investigation included meetings with stakeholders such as the DOI, NASA, NOAA, and commercial data providers. The report includes the committee\'s recommendations, information about different aspects of the program, and a section dedicated to future opportunities.
At the request of the U.S. Department of Education, the National Research Council convened a committee of experts from many disciplines to synthesize research on literacy and learning in order to improve instruction for those served in adult education in the U.S. The committee's report, Improving Adult Literacy Instruction: Options for Practice and Research, recommends a program of research and innovation to gain a better understanding of adult literacy learners, improve instruction, and create the supports adults need for learning and achievement.
Improving Adult Literacy Instruction: Developing Reading and Writing, which is based on the report, presents an overview of what is known about how literacy develops the component skills of reading and writing, and the practices that are effective for developing them. It also describes principles of reading and writing instruction that can guide those who design and administer programs or courses to improve adult literacy skills. Although this is not intended as a "how to" manual for instructors, teachers may also find the information presented here to be helpful as they plan and deliver instruction.
The 2000 NRC report Preventing the Forward Contamination of Europa provided a criterion that was adopted with prior recommendations from the Committee on Space Research of the International Council for Science. This current NRC report revisits and extends the findings and recommendations of the 2000 Europa report in light of recent advances in planetary and life sciences and, among other tasks, assesses the risk of contamination of icy bodies in the solar system.
This book provides guidance on effective approaches for building laboratory facilities in the chemical and biochemical sciences. It contains both basic and laboratory-specific information addressed to the user community-the scientists and administrators who contract with design and construction experts. The book will also be important to the design and construction communities-the architects, laboratory designers, and engineers who will design the facility and the construction personnel who will build it-to help them communicate with the scientific community for whom they build laboratory facilities.
Collectively, these are called the Constellation System. In November 2007 NASA asked the National Research Council (NRC) to evaluate the potential for new science opportunities enabled by the Constellation System of rockets and spacecraft.
The NRC committee evaluated a total of 17 mission concepts for future space science missions. Of those, the committee determined that 12 would benefit from the Constellation System and five would not. This book presents the committee's findings and recommendations, including cost estimates, a review of the technical feasibility of each mission, and identification of the missions most deserving of future study.
Recognizing the new national and international context for space activities, America's Future in Space is meant to advise the nation on key goals and critical issues in 21st century U.S. civil space policy.
Because the change in focus of planetary studies called for in the Integrated Strategy appears to require an evolutionary change in the technical means by which solar system exploration missions are conducted, the Space Studies Board charged COMPLEX to review the science that can be uniquely addressed by mobility in planetary environments.
More recently, theoretical models of the jovian system and Europa have suggested that tidal heating may have resulted in the existence of liquid water, and perhaps an ocean, beneath Europa's surface. NASA's ongoing Galileo mission has profoundly expanded our understanding of Europa and the dynamics of the jovian system, and may allow us to constrain theoretical models of Europa's subsurface structure.
Meanwhile, since the time of the Voyagers, there has been a revolution in our understanding of the limits of life on Earth. Life has been detected thriving in environments previously thought to be untenable - around hydrothermal vent systems on the seafloor, deep underground in basaltic rocks, and within polar ice. Elsewhere in the solar system, including on Europa, environments thought to be compatible with life as we know it on Earth are now considered possible, or even probable. Spacecraft missions are being planned that may be capable of proving their existence.
Against this background, the Space Studies Board charged its Committee on Planetary and Lunar Exploration (COMPLEX) to perform a comprehensive study to assess current knowledge about Europa, outline a strategy for future spacecraft missions to Europa, and identify opportunities for complementary Earth-based studies of Europa. (See the preface for a full statement of the charge.)
In 2005, a Congressional mandate called for NASA to detect 90 percent of NEOs with diameters of 140 meters of greater by 2020. Defending Planet Earth: Near-Earth Object Surveys and Hazard Mitigation Strategies identifies the need for detection of objects as small as 30 to 50 meters as these can be highly destructive. The book explores four main types of mitigation including civil defense, "slow push" or "pull" methods, kinetic impactors and nuclear explosions. It also asserts that responding effectively to hazards posed by NEOs requires national and international cooperation. Defending Planet Earth: Near-Earth Object Surveys and Hazard Mitigation Strategies is a useful guide for scientists, astronomers, policy makers and engineers.
The knowledge base needed to design shielding involves two sets of factors, each with quantitative uncertainty-the radiation spectra and doses present behind different types of shielding, and the effects of the doses on relevant biological systems. It is only prudent to design shielding that will protect the crew of spacecraft exposed to predicted high, but uncertain, levels of radiation and biological effects. Because of the uncertainties regarding the degree and type of radiation protection needed, a requirement for shielding to protect against large deleterious, but uncertain, biological effects may be imposed, which in turn could result in an unacceptable cost to a mission. It therefore is of interest to reduce these uncertainties in biological effects and shielding requirements for reasons of mission feasibility, safety, and cost.
How Students Learn: History, Mathematics, and Science in the Classroom builds on the discoveries detailed in the bestselling How People Learn. Now, these findings are presented in a way that teachers can use immediately, to revitalize their work in the classroom for even greater effectiveness.
Organized for utility, the book explores how the principles of learning can be applied in teaching history, science, and math topics at three levels: elementary, middle, and high school. Leading educators explain in detail how they developed successful curricula and teaching approaches, presenting strategies that serve as models for curriculum development and classroom instruction. Their recounting of personal teaching experiences lends strength and warmth to this volume.
The book explores the importance of balancing studentsâ€™ knowledge of historical fact against their understanding of concepts, such as change and cause, and their skills in assessing historical accounts. It discusses how to build straightforward science experiments into true understanding of scientific principles. And it shows how to overcome the difficulties in teaching math to generate real insight and reasoning in math students. It also features illustrated suggestions for classroom activities.
How Students Learn offers a highly useful blend of principle and practice. It will be important not only to teachers, administrators, curriculum designers, and teacher educators, but also to parents and the larger community concerned about childrenâ€™s education.
single copy, $8.95; 2-9 copies, $7.50 each; 10 or more copies, $6.95 each (no other discounts apply)
STEM Integration in K-12 Education makes recommendations for designers of integrated STEM experiences, assessment developers, and researchers to design and document effective integrated STEM education. This report will help to further their work and improve the chances that some forms of integrated STEM education will make a positive difference in student learning and interest and other valued outcomes.
The committee identifies five interdependent components of mathematical proficiency and describes how students develop this proficiency. With examples and illustrations, the book presents a portrait of mathematics learning:
Research findings on what children know about numbers by the time they arrive in pre-K and the implications for mathematics instruction. Details on the processes by which students acquire mathematical proficiency with whole numbers, rational numbers, and integers, as well as beginning algebra, geometry, measurement, and probability and statistics.
The committee discusses what is known from research about teaching for mathematics proficiency, focusing on the interactions between teachers and students around educational materials and how teachers develop proficiency in teaching mathematics.
Sports-Related Concussions in Youth: Improving the Science, Changing the Culture reviews the science of sports-related concussions in youth from elementary school through young adulthood, as well as in military personnel and their dependents. This report recommends actions that can be taken by a range of audiences - including research funding agencies, legislatures, state and school superintendents and athletic directors, military organizations, and equipment manufacturers, as well as youth who participate in sports and their parents - to improve what is known about concussions and to reduce their occurrence. Sports-Related Concussions in Youth finds that while some studies provide useful information, much remains unknown about the extent of concussions in youth; how to diagnose, manage, and prevent concussions; and the short- and long-term consequences of concussions as well as repetitive head impacts that do not result in concussion symptoms.
The culture of sports negatively influences athletes' self-reporting of concussion symptoms and their adherence to return-to-play guidance. Athletes, their teammates, and, in some cases, coaches and parents may not fully appreciate the health threats posed by concussions. Similarly, military recruits are immersed in a culture that includes devotion to duty and service before self, and the critical nature of concussions may often go unheeded. According to Sports-Related Concussions in Youth, if the youth sports community can adopt the belief that concussions are serious injuries and emphasize care for players with concussions until they are fully recovered, then the culture in which these athletes perform and compete will become much safer. Improving understanding of the extent, causes, effects, and prevention of sports-related concussions is vitally important for the health and well-being of youth athletes. The findings and recommendations in this report set a direction for research to reach this goal.
Guide to Implementing the Next Generation Science Standards provides guidance to district and school leaders and teachers charged with developing a plan and implementing the NGSS as they change their curriculum, instruction, professional learning, policies, and assessment to align with the new standards. For each of these elements, this report lays out recommendations for action around key issues and cautions about potential pitfalls. Coordinating changes in these aspects of the education system is challenging. As a foundation for that process, Guide to Implementing the Next Generation Science Standards identifies some overarching principles that should guide the planning and implementation process.
The new standards present a vision of science and engineering learning designed to bring these subjects alive for all students, emphasizing the satisfaction of pursuing compelling questions and the joy of discovery and invention. Achieving this vision in all science classrooms will be a major undertaking and will require changes to many aspects of science education. Guide to Implementing the Next Generation Science Standards will be a valuable resource for states, districts, and schools charged with planning and implementing changes, to help them achieve the goal of teaching science for the 21st century.
Relying on a comprehensive review of the research, Mathematics Learning in Early Childhood lays out the critical areas that should be the focus of young children's early mathematics education, explores the extent to which they are currently being incorporated in early childhood settings, and identifies the changes needed to improve the quality of mathematics experiences for young children. This book serves as a call to action to improve the state of early childhood mathematics. It will be especially useful for policy makers and practitioners-those who work directly with children and their families in shaping the policies that affect the education of young children.
Evaluating, and Improving Undergraduate Teaching in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics offers a vision for systematic evaluation of teaching practices and academic programs, with recommendations to the various stakeholders in higher education about how to achieve change.
What is good undergraduate teaching? This book discusses how to evaluate undergraduate teaching of science, mathematics, engineering, and technology and what characterizes effective teaching in these fields.
Why has it been difficult for colleges and universities to address the question of teaching effectiveness? The committee explores the implications of differences between the research and teaching cultures-and how practices in rewarding researchers could be transferred to the teaching enterprise.
How should administrators approach the evaluation of individual faculty members? And how should evaluation results be used? The committee discusses methodologies, offers practical guidelines, and points out pitfalls.
Evaluating, and Improving Undergraduate Teaching in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics provides a blueprint for institutions ready to build effective evaluation programs for teaching in science fields.
Making and maintaining an accurate flood map is neither simple nor inexpensive. Even after an investment of more than $1 billion to take flood maps into the digital world, only 21 percent of the population has maps that meet or exceed national flood hazard data quality thresholds. Even when floodplains are mapped with high accuracy, land development and natural changes to the landscape or hydrologic systems create the need for continuous map maintenance and updates.
Mapping the Zone examines the factors that affect flood map accuracy, assesses the benefits and costs of more accurate flood maps, and recommends ways to improve flood mapping, communication, and management of flood-related data.
To explore this potential, Learning Science: Computer Games, Simulations, and Education, reviews the available research on learning science through interaction with digital simulations and games. It considers the potential of digital games and simulations to contribute to learning science in schools, in informal out-of-school settings, and everyday life. The book also identifies the areas in which more research and research-based development is needed to fully capitalize on this potential.
Learning Science will guide academic researchers; developers, publishers, and entrepreneurs from the digital simulation and gaming community; and education practitioners and policy makers toward the formation of research and development partnerships that will facilitate rich intellectual collaboration. Industry, government agencies and foundations will play a significant role through start-up and ongoing support to ensure that digital games and simulations will not only excite and entertain, but also motivate and educate.
While certain processes have improved or become more efficient, and certain practices have been outlawed or amended, the sheer scale of global consumption and its attendant impacts continue to be major challenges we face in the transition to sustainability. Third-party certification systems have emerged over the last 15 years as a tool with some promise. There has been anecdotal evidence of success, but to date the overall impact of certified goods and services has been small. Moreover, definitions of sustainable vary across sectors and markets, and rigorous assessments of these programs have been few and far between.
In order to take a step in learning from this field of practice, the National Academies' Science and Technology for Sustainability Program held a workshop to illuminate the decision making process of those who purchase and produce certified goods and services. It was also intended to help clarify the scope and limitations of the scientific knowledge that might contribute to the economic success of certified products. The workshop, summarized in this volume, involved presentations and discussions with approximately 40 invited experts from academia, business, government, and nongovernmental organizations.
Violence and related forms of abuse against elders is a global public health and human rights problem with far-reaching consequences, resulting in increased death, disability, and exploitation with collateral effects on well-being. Data suggest that at least 10 percent of elders in the United States are victims of elder maltreatment every year. In low- and middle-income countries, where the burden of violence is the greatest, the figure is likely even higher. In addition, elders experiencing risk factors such as diminishing cognitive function, caregiver dependence, and social isolation are more vulnerable to maltreatment and underreporting. As the world population of adults aged 65 and older continues to grow, the implications of elder maltreatment for health care, social welfare, justice, and financial systems are great. However, despite the magnitude of global elder maltreatment, it has been an underappreciated public health problem. Elder Abuse and Its Prevention discusses the prevalence and characteristics of elder abuse around the world, risk factors for abuse and potential adverse health outcomes, and contextually specific factors, such as culture and the role of the community.
Innovation in Global Industries challenges this thinking. The book, a collection of individually authored studies, examines in detail structural changes in the innovation process in 10 service as well as manufacturing industries: personal computers; semiconductors; flat-panel displays; software; lighting; biotechnology; pharmaceuticals; financial services; logistics; and venture capital. There is no doubt that overall there has been an acceleration in global sourcing of innovation and an emergence of new locations of research capacity and advanced technical skills, but the patterns are highly variable. Many industries and some firms in nearly all industries retain leading-edge capacity in the United States. However, the book concludes that is no reason for complacency about the future outlook. Innovation deserves more emphasis in firm performance measures and more sustained support in public policy.
Innovation in Global Industries will be of special interest to business people and government policy makers as well as professors, students, and other researchers of economics, management, international affairs, and political science.
When the committee began its work in 1999, the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force had recently experienced recruiting shortfalls. By the early 2000s, all the Services were meeting their goals; however, in the first half of calendar year 2005, both the Army and the Marine Corps experienced recruiting difficulties and, in some months, shortfalls. When recruiting goals are not being met, scientific guidance is needed to inform policy decisions regarding the advisability of lowering standards and the impact of any change on training time and cost, job performance, attrition, and the health of the force.
Assessing Fitness for Military Enlistment examines the current physical, medical, and mental health standards for military enlistment in light of (1) trends in the physical condition of the youth population; (2) medical advances for treating certain conditions, as well as knowledge of the typical course of chronic conditions as young people reach adulthood; (3) the role of basic training in physical conditioning; (4) the physical demands and working conditions of various jobs in today's military services; and (5) the measures that are used by the Services to characterize an individual's physical condition. The focus is on the enlistment of 18- to 24-year-olds and their first term of service.
The Committee on Hydrologic Science was established by the National Research Council in 1999 to identify priorities for hydrologic science that will ensure its vitality as a scientific discipline in service of societal needs. This charge will be performed principally through a series of studies that provide scientific advice on the hydrologic aspects of national program and U.S. hydrologic contributions to international programs.
This first report contains a preliminary assessment of the hydrologic science content of the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP). Because this is a short and focused report, little effort is spent to reaffirm the established and successful elements of the USGCRP. In fact, the Committee generally endorses the findings of the National Research Council (NRC) report Global Environmental Change: Research Pathways for the Next Decade (NRC, 1998a; the so-called Pathways report) in this respect. Instead the attention here is directed toward the most critical missing hydrologic science elements in the FY2000 USGCRP. This brings the focus to the terrestrial component of the water cycle. The integrative nature of terrestrial hydrology could significantly strengthen the USGCRP.
Research indicates that for most youth, the period of risky experimentation does not extend beyond adolescence, ceasing as identity becomes settled with maturity. Much adolescent involvement in criminal activity is part of the normal developmental process of identity formation and most adolescents will mature out of these tendencies. Evidence of significant changes in brain structure and function during adolescence strongly suggests that these cognitive tendencies characteristic of adolescents are associated with biological immaturity of the brain and with an imbalance among developing brain systems. This imbalance model implies dual systems: one involved in cognitive and behavioral control and one involved in socio-emotional processes. Accordingly adolescents lack mature capacity for self-regulations because the brain system that influences pleasure-seeking and emotional reactivity develops more rapidly than the brain system that supports self-control. This knowledge of adolescent development has underscored important differences between adults and adolescents with direct bearing on the design and operation of the justice system, raising doubts about the core assumptions driving the criminalization of juvenile justice policy in the late decades of the 20th century.
It was in this context that the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) asked the National Research Council to convene a committee to conduct a study of juvenile justice reform. The goal of Reforming Juvenile Justice: A Developmental Approach was to review recent advances in behavioral and neuroscience research and draw out the implications of this knowledge for juvenile justice reform, to assess the new generation of reform activities occurring in the United States, and to assess the performance of OJJDP in carrying out its statutory mission as well as its potential role in supporting scientifically based reform efforts.
Public Law 105-78 requested that the National Research Council study whether an equivalency scale could be developed that would allow test scores from existing commercial tests and state assessments to be compared with each other and with the National Assessment of Education Progress.
In this book, the committee reviewed research literature on the statistical and technical aspects of creating valid links between tests and how the content, use, and purposes of education testing in the United States influences the quality and meaning of those links. The book summarizes relevant prior linkage studies and presents a picture of the diversity of state testing programs. It also looks at the unique characteristics of the National Assessment of Educational Progress.
Uncommon Measures provides an answer to the question posed by Congress in Public Law 105-78, suggests criteria for evaluating the quality of linkages, and calls for further research to determine the level of precision needed to make inferences about linked tests. In arriving at its conclusions, the committee acknowledged that ultimately policymakers and educators must take responsibility for determining the degree of imprecision they are willing to tolerate in testing and linking. This book provides science-based information with which to make those decisions.
International nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) have stepped in to address the dire humanitarian situation. This study looks at four organizations that support local health care in the eastern DRC: the International Rescue Committee (IRC), Malteser, Medical Emergency Relief International (Merlin), and the Association Régionale d'Approvisionnement en Médicaments Essentiels (ASRAMES). The study makes a comparison of the management and financing approaches of these four organizations by collecting and comparing qualitative and quantitative data on their interaction with the (remaining) local health providers and the local population.
Specific objectives of the study are:
1. To identify which management and financing approaches, including the setting of fees, are used by the four NGOs supporting healthcare in the eastern DRC.
2. To determine how these financing approaches affect utilization rates in the health zones supported by the four NGOs.
3. To assess how these utilization rates compare with donor and humanitarian standards.
4. To determine at what level fees must be set to allow for cost recovery or cost sharing in health facilities.
5. To identify the managerial problems confronting the four NGOs.
Many epidemiological and public health studies focus on the interaction between health providers and target groups. Supporting Local Health Care in a Chronic Crisis: Management and Financing Approaches in the Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo concentrates more on how the relationship between the supporting NGOs and the local health system actually develops. In addition, a common aspect of many of the epidemiological and public health studies is the search for an optimal, or at least appropriate, management and financing approach.
Understanding Earth's Deep Past provides an assessment of both the demonstrated and underdeveloped potential of the deep-time geologic record to inform us about the dynamics of the global climate system. The report describes past climate changes, and discusses potential impacts of high levels of atmospheric greenhouse gases on regional climates, water resources, marine and terrestrial ecosystems, and the cycling of life-sustaining elements. While revealing gaps in scientific knowledge of past climate states, the report highlights a range of high priority research issues with potential for major advances in the scientific understanding of climate processes. This proposed integrated, deep-time climate research program would study how climate responded over Earth's different climate states, examine how climate responds to increased atmospheric carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, and clarify the processes that lead to anomalously warm polar and tropical regions and the impact on marine and terrestrial life.
In addition to outlining a research agenda, Understanding Earth's Deep Past proposes an implementation strategy that will be an invaluable resource to decision-makers in the field, as well as the research community, advocacy organizations, government agencies, and college professors and students.