For months, the White House has been talking up artificial intelligence as one of America’s most important tech frontiers. Now we’re starting to see some of the dollar signs behind the talk. In newly released budget documents, the Trump administration says it wants to split $850 million in civilian federal spending on AI research and development between the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the Energy Department.
Another year, another round of spending cuts; and, perhaps, another case of Congress riding to the rescue? The White House's budget request for the 2020 fiscal year, released today, once again seeks to scale back research programs across government, though most of the details will wait until next week. That's because the White House is issuing its annual proposal to Congress in phases, with only a 150-page budget overview released today.
U.S. Sens. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Deb Fischer (R-NE) on March 11 cosponsored a bipartisan, bicameral bill that would direct the National Science Foundation (NSF) to support STEM education research focused on early childhood. “By finding ways to introduce students to STEM skills and knowledge at an early age, we can help them better learn to take risks, solve problems, and build confidence -- especially among young women and girls,” Sen. Capito said...
Well, it turns out that U.S. taxpayers spend about $40 billion--not million--a year on research at American colleges and universities. These dollars are spent by the Department of Defense, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Science Foundation and a host of other agencies. These funds are not being used to underwrite tuition or teaching; Washington is engaging universities as subcontractors in order to conduct selected research.
The study, published in JAMA, looks at National Institutes of Health grants from 2006 to 2017. Female first-time principal investigators received a median grant of $126,615, across all grant and institution types during that period. First-time male grantees, meanwhile, got $165,721. The difference is just about $40,000 -- arguably enough to make or break a project, or a career.
The bill instructs the National Science Foundation (NSF) to more equitably allocate funding for research with a focus on early childhood. The bill also directs NSF to support research on the factors that discourage or encourage girls to engage in STEM activities, including computer science. The Building Blocks of STEM Act is a bipartisan, bicameral bill, introduced jointly by Congresswoman Stevens and Congressman Jim Baird (R-IN) in the House of Representatives, alongside U.S. Senators Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) in the Senate.
Major federal STEM education programs received steady or increased funding in its appropriation for fiscal year 2019. Congress rejected the proposed elimination of several Education Department grant programs and the education offices at NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, while significantly boosting the National Defense Education Program.
The FY 2019 federal budget was completed last week, finalizing funding for commerce, science and small business agencies. Most programs supporting innovation activities received the same funding as in FY 2018, although Regional Innovation Strategies will have $23.5 million, an increase of $2.5 million, for the current award solicitation.
With less than two days to go before the US government runs out of money, lawmakers in Congress are scrambling to pass a budget deal that would give small increases to NASA, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and many other science agencies.
Women are less successful in receiving research funding than men if the selection process focusses on the scientist making the pitch rather than the science presented, according to new research released Friday. In an edition of The Lancet medical journal dedicated entirely to gender issues in health and science, the paper showed that the gap between male and female success rates in grant acceptance grew when things got personal.