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Physics Head to Join Federal Science Office

By Jennifer Lane
Staff Reporter

Professor of Physics Ernest J. Moniz, head of the department since 1991, will likely leave the Institute

President Clinton announced earlier this month his intention to nominate Moniz for the post; confirmation by the Senate is also required.

Institute Professor Jerome I. Friedman will serve as chair of the department for the 1995-96 school year, said Dean of the School Science Robert J. Birgeneau in a recent Tech Talk article.

The position "is specifically involved in structuring the administration's position on science and will involve working within the executive department," Moniz said.

Moniz will work with Jack H. Gibbons, the OSTP director and presidential science adviser, providing scientific and technological advice and assistance to the president, according to the Tech Talk article.

With the potential budget cuts over the next few years, Moniz said that he expects to see technology spending suffer somewhat.

Moniz said that he is dismayed by the removal of the Office of Technology Assessment from the OSTP. "The OTAhas a distinguished history of providing policy options in a bipartisan way to Congress on issues of science and technology," he said.

Moniz forecasts "some real discussion in terms of technology programs in partnership with industry."

Moniz, who joined the physics faculty in 1973, currently serves as the chair of the Nuclear Science Advisory Committee of the National Science Foundation and the Department of Energy. He also chairs an advisory committee at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.