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Growth Ahead

Yang Wei is taking over the National Natural Science Foundation of China, which experienced a large budget increase during his predecessor's tenure, and Yang tells ScienceInsider that the agency expects to see further growth. "Although increases will be less dramatic than in the past 9 years, we still anticipate growth rates higher than China's GDP growth rate [forecast to be 7.5 percent in 2013]," Yang says. Still, he notes that the NSFC budget is 40 percent the size of the US National Science Foundation budget and that one division of the agency competes with the US National Institutes of Health.

At the same time, Yang says he is working to promote research integrity and to improve agency operations. He tells ScienceInsider that an independent research integrity committee has identified five areas of misconduct — credential inflation, plagiarism, assigning favorable reviewers to certain applications, leakage of review information, and submitting false progress reports — that the agency is keeping watch on.