Both supply and demand have contributed to an research-and-development (R&D) career bottleneck, according to a 15 December Science article signed by the 10 research leaders, who call themselves the Coalition for Next Generation Life Science. US federal research funding, when adjusted for inflation, declined by nearly 20% from 2003 to 2016, according to the article. Meanwhile, PhD candidates continue to enroll in doctoral programmes. The result is that only one in 10 trainees will gain a tenure-track position within five years of receiving their PhD. Many PhD holders then spend longer than they had anticipated in postdoc training positions, sometimes taking multiple fellowships while waiting for academic job openings to materialize. And the ones who do land such positions are taking longer to secure their first independent grant.