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Conversation with Customers
Note from the Director

Dear Partners and Customers of the USGS and its Science:

In transmitting this report on a recent listening session the USGS held with a small group of its thousands of partners and customers, I want to reiterate some of the comments that I made at the beginning of the session to ensure that those who were not present know the esteem with which the USGS holds those who are active players in the science in which we are engaged. It is only through the support of our science and its value to all who use it that we can be sure that we are fulfilling the trust placed in us by the citizens who make the considerable investment by their taxes in the conduct of public science. We take that role of wise steward of the public dollars invested in science very seriously, and seek to ensure those who are direct users of our science, or those who benefit indirectly, that their investment is wisely spent and that the science in which we are engaged provides the solutions that society needs to confront the issues and problems before it.

On the day of the listening session, I commented that the recent report of the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences on Future Roles and Opportunities for the U.S. Geological Survey, in which it characterized the USGS as a "natural science and information agency," meshed well with the directions that the USGS sees itself pursuing. Budget action that had just concluded the day before the listening session was quite present on my mind and I emphasized that that action and the NRC report together strongly supported the view of the USGS as an agency with broad responsibilities to a large number of partners and cooperators across the country. We view the health of the budget for USGS science for Fiscal Year 2002 as a testament to the support that customers and citizens have voiced.

Looking to the future, the USGS takes quite seriously the opportunity for dialog that listening sessions such as this and our regular engagement with customers affords us. We want to strengthen that foundation of partnership and relationship and to make the opportunities for collaboration readily available and more robust. As evidence of our commitment to our partners and customers, the entire USGS Executive Leadership Team was involved in the listening session, as each of them is vigorously involved with its constituents throughout the year. I have charged each member of that team to actively pursue the feedback provided at the listening session and to address how we might meet customer needs and input.

We benefit greatly from opportunities such as this listening session. We have the chance to hear what is working well for you, to hear what is missing in our science, and to hear your forward thinking as to where we might develop new or enhance existing science programs. We are always ready to listen and to learn from those who are served by USGS science. If at any time you wish to communicate with us, send us a message at: conversation@usgs.gov

Thank you for your feedback and your support.


Charles G. "Chip" Groat Director


Conversation with Customers

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