OMB Backs Away From Disputed Risk Assessment Policy

01.12.07 | 1 min read | Text by Steven Aftergood

In an uncommon victory for the objectivity of the scientific advisory process, the Office of Management and Budget said that it would not implement a proposed new policy on regulatory risk assessments after a National Academy of Sciences panel said the policy was “fundamentally flawed.”

Last January the OMB issued a proposed “bulletin” (pdf) that prescribed new, centralized procedures for performing regulatory risk assessments.

But “the proposed definition of risk assessment in the OMB bulletin departs without justification from long-established concepts and practices,” the NAS panel said.

What’s worse, the proposed changes would mean that “agency risk assessments are more susceptible to being manipulated to achieve a predetermined result.”

Accordingly, the NAS panel recommended that the OMB bulletin be withdrawn. See this January 11 news release on the NAS report.

In light of the NAS critique, the OMB will not finalize the proposed bulletin, Rick Weiss of the Washington Post reported today.

See OMB Watch for further background on the OMB risk assessment proposal and the resulting controversy.

See all publications
Nuclear Weapons
New Voices on Nuclear Weapons Fellowship: Creative Perspectives on Rethinking Nuclear Deterrence 

To empower new voices to start their career in nuclear weapons studies, the Federation of American Scientists launched the New Voices on Nuclear Weapons Fellowship. Here’s what our inaugural cohort accomplished.

11.28.23 | 3 min read
read more
Science Policy
Expected Utility Forecasting for Science Funding

Common frameworks for evaluating proposals leave this utility function implicit, often evaluating aspects of risk, uncertainty, and potential value independently and qualitatively.

11.20.23 | 11 min read
read more
Nuclear Weapons
Nuclear Notebook: Nuclear Weapons Sharing, 2023

The FAS Nuclear Notebook is one of the most widely sourced reference materials worldwide for reliable information about the status of nuclear weapons and has been published in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists since 1987. The Nuclear Notebook is researched and written by the staff of the Federation of American Scientists’ Nuclear Information Project: Director Hans […]

11.17.23 | 1 min read
read more
Social Innovation
Community School Approach Reaches High of 60%, Reports Latest Pulse Panel

According to the National Center for Education Statistics’ August 2023 pulse panel, 60% of public schools were utilizing a “community school” or “wraparound services model” at the start of this school year—up from 45% last year.

11.17.23 | 4 min read
read more