A Review of Reports on Selected Large Federal Science Facilities
Management and Life-Cycle Issues
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The federal government operates several large-scale research facilities that enable scientific inquiry in a range of fields, including physics, material sciences, astronomy, and, increasingly, the life sciences. This study was designed to help the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) address the issues surrounding the planning, operation, and management of selected large scientific facilities and to identify key areas in need of oversight or coordination by OSTP. A research team in RAND's Science and Technology Policy Institute reviewed 20 documented studies of major science facilities or guides for their operation and drew conclusions based on the findings and recommendations of the expert panels that produced the reviewed documents. The information presented here represents the research team's synthesis of those documents. The authors identify lessons that would be of value to the federal government as it builds, manages, and retires large scientific facilities.