Stimulate US: Funding innovation in science


While many pundits bemoan the loss of manufacturing jobs, I'm more concerned about our nation's long-term plan to promote innovation. The U.S. has long been a leader in invention, thanks to the best higher education system in the world and generous federal funding for scientific research. However, budget constraints and the barriers we've imposed on foreign nationals wishing to work in the U.S. threaten our leadership.

That's why I'm glad to see money in the new stimulus package for science. This should benefit the country immediately (by putting people to work) and in the long run by leading to the development of new, and in particular green, industries.

Certainly there is a great deal of green ($21.5 billion) for R&D in the bill. The funds are spread among a number of government entities, including the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Energy Department (DOE), NASA, NOAA, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.