Funding

Northrop CEO: Defense R&D Investment Lags

The US ranked sixth in the world in the 2014 Global Innovation Index, with China far behind at 29th, Bush said. But from 2009 to 2012, China's defense R&D spending as a percentage of its GDP rose by about 18 percent annually as China's overall economy grew by 9 percent annually. Over the same period, the US GDP grew by a modest 1 percent, but defense R&D spending shrank by about 7 percent each year.

The US is in danger of losing its technological edge

Looking back 50 years, you’ll find that R&D spending accounted for just about 12 percent of the total U.S. budget. Now, that has dropped to a bit more than three percent. To put that into perspective, a recent Bloomberg study pinpointed the most innovative countries in the world.

Why Curiosity Should Drive Our Scientific Agenda

Vannevar Bush argued that the best way to support basic research is to give federal funding to academic scientists, who are not under pressure to produce immediately practical results and are “free to pursue the truth wherever it may lead." But this approach is often hard for many to accept because scientists sometimes undertake what seem like wasteful projects with no practical benefits.

Could Crowdfunding Help Finance Future Research?

Traditionally, most scientific funding in the United States has come from the government in the form of grants distributed by federal science, health and defense agencies. But with today’s change in funding streams, scientists are forced to think outside the box and find alternate ways to progress their research. Now a niche of crowdfunding sites, such as Experiment and Petridish are filling in where funds are falling short.

The Changing Nature of U.S. Basic Research: Trends in Federal Spending

Innovation in the United States, once a hallmark of economic success, finds itself resting on an increasingly weak foundation, according to an article in The New York Times.  The author, Eduardo Porter, suggests that two trends – increased international competition and a stagnant R&D-to-GDP ratio – pose key challenges for the U.S. First, government funding for basic research continues to fall and is politically vulnerable.

NSF: Federal Funding for R&D, Facilities Fell 9% in FY 2013

Federal agency funding for research and development and R&D plant (facilities and fixed equipment used for R&D) fell by 9 percent in fiscal year 2013, according to a new InfoBrief from the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES). NCSES found that total federal agency obligations dropped from $141 billion to $127 billion between fiscal 2012 and fiscal 2013.

Senators push funding increase for energy research

Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Chris Coons (D-Del.) introduced the bill, which would reauthorize energy programs included in the America COMPETES Act, an eight-year-old law that supports federal research and development. The bill would increase funding for energy research by 4 percent annually and reauthorize two Department of Energy research offices. The overall goal is to double the $5 billion the Energy Department spends on energy research.

Mike Huckabee Urges Increased Funding for Science Research

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee has joined a group of other prominent Republicans calling for more federal spending dollars for scientific research. Huckabee is running for president. South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham and former Florida Gov Jeb Bush, two likely GOP candidates for president, recently announced their support for more science dollars as well.

House NASA Funding Bill Proposes a Fantastic Budget for Planetary Science

The House Appropriations Committee released their vision for NASA's 2016 budget this week, and it includes a fantastic level of support for NASA's Planetary Science Division: $1.557 billion. We at the Society have been arguing for at least $1.5 billion for this unique program for the past four years, so this is very satisfying to see. But there's a lot going on this bill, and not all of it is as positive as the planetary number. So let's break it down some.

Permanent R&D credit critical to jobs, innovation

It seems the Research & Development Tax Credit (R&D Credit) is always the bridesmaid and never the bride.  Since its enactment to encourage U.S. investment in research, the R&D credit has been extended 16 times, oftentimes retroactively, and even modified over the years.  Notwithstanding this volatile history and strong evidence of the need for innovative research it has never been made permanent.

Science Funding Bill Passes a Split House, Despite Scientist Opposition

The American Competes Reauthorization Act of 2015 was passed by a split House of Representatives Wednesday, amid opposition from a wide swath of the scientific community. The passage also came after hours of negotiations over the bill, which Republicans have said would keep overall federal spending flat – while opponents have said it would constrain how the National Science Foundation would be able to spend that money.

House panel unveils $579B bill funding Pentagon

House Republicans on Tuesday unveiled a nearly $579 billion bill funding the Defense Department for the next fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1. The bill provides about $24 billion more than the current 2015 fiscal year and $800 million above President Obama’s request, according to the House Appropriations Defense subcommittee, which will mark up the bill behind closed doors Wednesday.

Senate could take up $612 billion defense policy bill in June

“Schedule permitting, the committee is ready to go to the floor in June,” a Senate Armed Services Committee aide told The Hill on Monday. The panel unveiled its draft of the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) last week. The $612 billion policy blueprint sets spending limits for all Defense Department programs and initiatives.

What Is This Wall Street Quant Worried About? STEM Education, Naturally

The Overdeck Family Foundation has four key interests, and they are all centered on education: "Early Impact," which assumes that a child's first years lay the groundwork for future success and well-being. "Exceptional Educators" aims to prepare teachers of the highest quality. "Innovative Schools" looks at structuring and organizing schools to achieve the best outcomes for kids. And "Inspired Minds" is focused on getting kids excited about STEM.

Bipartisan legacy endangered as COMPETES hits House floor

The last two bills to reauthorize the nation's science and energy research programs in 2007 and 2010 passed with broad bipartisan support and united statements of forging a bold path to retain U.S. scientific leadership. But the 2015 version scheduled to be considered on the House floor this week is likely to play out much differently, despite both parties touting the need for scientific research and innovation to keep the United States a world economic leader.

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