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The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Under the authority of the charter granted to it by Congress in 1863, the Academy has a working mandate that calls on it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce M. Alberts is president of the NAS.

The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) was established in 1964, under the charter of the NAS, as a parallel organization of distinguished engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of members, sharing with the NAS its responsibilities for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. William A. Wulf is president of the NAE.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) was established in 1970 by the NAS to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the NAS in its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, on its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the IOM.

The Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy (COSEPUP) is a joint committee of the NAS, the NAE, and the IOM. It includes members of the councils of all three bodies.

Financial Support: The development of this guide was supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Burroughs-Wellcome Fund. Dissemination support for this guide was provided by the American Mathematical Society.

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Copyright 1997 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. This document may be reproduced solely for educational purposes without the written permission of the National Academy of Sciences.

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