SBE - Budget
The Social, Behavioral, and Economics Sciences (SBE) Activity supports research, infrastructure and
education in the social, behavioral, cognitive and economic sciences, primarily through grants to
investigators at universities and other institutions. The research it supports has resulted in substantial
advances in our understanding of human and social development and of how people behave, both as
individuals and as parts of groups and other more formal organizations. SBE also supports the collection
and dissemination of statistics on the science and engineering enterprise.
SBE is a principal source of federal support for fundamental research on human cognition and behavior and social
structures and social interaction, as well as for research on the intellectual and social contexts that govern the
development and use of science and technology. Overall, SBE accounts for 63 percent of federal support for basic
research in the social sciences at U.S. academic institutions. In some fields, including anthropology, archaeology,
political science, economics, sociology and the social aspects of psychology, it is the predominant or exclusive
source of federal support for basic research and infrastructure development. Critical federal research and
development (R&D) investment priorities, including homeland and national security, economic
prosperity, integrating research and education, and environmental quality are rooted in the kinds of
behavior the SBE sciences seek to understand.
The Science Resources Statistics subactivity within SBE is the Federal statistical agency responsible for
the compilation and analysis of data on the science and engineering enterprise. Major components are
surveys of the science and engineering workforce and their education and on the nation’s research and
development portfolio. The results of this work are used to assess the state of the nation’s domestic
workforce in S&E, its ability to compete globally and the outlook for the nation’s research capacity, as
well as providing critical benchmarking information on cyberinfrastructure in the research and biomedical
communities. Findings from SRS studies have long been important to the development of the nation’s
educational and science policy agendas.