Agnew, Bruce. "OSI, Heal Thyself: Misconduct Office Sets On The Road to Self-Reform," The

 

Agnew, Bruce. "OSI, Heal Thyself: Misconduct Office Sets On The Road to Self-Reform," The
Journal of NIH Research 4 (March, 1992), pp. 33-34.

The OSI has beenin existence for three years. It has been attacked by insiders and outsiders of
NIH. It has also been the subject of a CVongressional inquiry. Its critics are many. It's associate
director was summarily removed from important assignments by the NIH director. In sum, the
office is not a popular one.

While superiors and outsiders seek ways to improve the operations of the OSI, the Director, Jules
Hallum, has been doing the same sort of thing. His latest effort has been to appoint an advisory
committee of "senior citizens" in science, people who are at an age and of a reputation that they
are above criticism. They are to offer Hallum their best efforts at improving the office.

Some of the names chosen for this committee are: Gunther Stent of Berkeley, chaiman, Philip
Abelson, Paul Doty, Donald Glaser, Harlan Halverson, Leon Kass, and former Rep Paul Rogers
(D-Fla) who was chairman of the Health and Environment Subcommittee. Robert Sprague, the
whistle-blower in the Bruening case is also a member.

The advisory committee of top names is clearly designed to help bolster the work of the OSI.
Scientists and administrators are unhappy with the work of OSI. Indeed, making this office work
is the primary function of the committee. There are difficult issues to be dealt with but there is
also the realization, evidenced by the appointment of this committee, that if OSI fails, science as
an institution is the loser.