To pursue effectively the goals and objectives described above, we have organized the USGCRP as a series of closely-linked program elements. We discuss these program elements in more detail in the sections below. The recommendations contained in the recent National Research Council report, Global Environmental Change: Research Pathways for the Next Decade, have significantly influenced the key issues and near-term focus areas.
Significantly enhanced interagency collaboration will be featured in the implementation of the USGCRP. By FY 2000, joint announcements of opportunity will be issued in the area of climate research in which representative agencies: 1) share overarching research goals; 2) participate in one collaborative merit-review process; 3) coordinate funding support; and 4) convene regular interagency workshops to document progress and propose changes in the integrated climate research agenda, with workshop outputs to be reflected in future budget requests. Such joint funding arrangements follow successful joint announcements in areas such as terrestrial ecosystems and paleoclimate research. In the development of new programs, such as carbon cycle research, agencies are collaborating in seeking scientific guidance in common from a single scientific advisory panel. In this way, programs are integrated at their inception.