Federal Administration Policy Updates and Campus Impacts 

UCSD Statement:

The UC San Diego Office of Research Affairs (ORA) recognizes that the change in administration may raise many questions and concerns for our students, faculty, and staff. The transition to a new administration brings with it changes in leadership within government departments and agencies, and the possibility for changes in policy or regulations. In collaboration with UC Federal Government Relations and major academic associations, ORA is attempting to discern what has policy implications for our research university enterprise and this FAQ will provide our community with regular updates and resources. Please feel free to contact Angela Phillips Diaz (apdiaz@ucsd.edu), Executive Director of Government Research Relations, with questions or issues.

White House Updates:

  • Jan. 31 – Many in the research community have been concerned about the integrity of and continued access to federal scientific data, and about reports that some federal research grants and agency communications have been suspended. It is often standard practice at the start of a new Administration for agencies to temporarily halt their communication with the media and Hill, per the request of the White House.

Agency and Department Updates:

  • Jan. 31 – Environmental Protection Agency transition team undertook a review of all research program grants. The review was completed January 27. The grant freeze gave the new Administration time to internally review the $3.8 billion in federal funding that the EPA sends to states for cleanup and monitoring projects. EPA has resumed its grants process. The Trump Administration's review of communications remains in place.
  • Jan. 31 – Employees at Health and Human Services and the National Institutes of Health received a memo calling for a halt to external correspondence. "For your additional awareness, please note that we have been directed not to send any correspondence to public officials (to include Members of Congress and state and local officials) between now and February 3, unless specifically authorized by the Department.” (Politico 1/24/17)
  • Jan. 31 – Other agencies and Departments (DoD, DoE, NASA, NSF) continue program and mission operations.
  • Jan. 31 – A number of professional organizations including AAAS, AGU, Sigma Xi have sent letters to the Administration expressing concerns regarding reports of restrictions imposed on public and media relations at federal agencies. AAAS CEO Rush Holt issued a statement 1/24/17 --https://www.aaas.org/news/aaas-reminds-new- administration-acknowledge-contribution-research-progress. We anticipate more clarity on policies and procedures as Cabinet Secretaries and leadership are confirmed and come onboard and as landing teams complete program reviews.

General Advice to UC San Diego Researchers:

  • Continue your world class research and educating the next generation to continue to impact our communities, state, nation and the world.
  • Work with Government Research Relations to:
    • Focus on communications to emphasize value and impact of UC San Diego programs and activities; and,
    • Identify stakeholders and opportunities to educate and engage.
  • Share information with Government Research Relations as you and/or your colleagues interact with federal agencies.
  • Attend professional association meetings addressing these public policy issues and organize Hill visits to educate Members of Congress.
    • February 13-14 - National Humanities Alliance (NHA)
    • February 16-20 - AAAS
    • March 29-30 - Consortium of Social Science Associations (COSSA)