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AAAS S&T Forum: States, Industry Play Key Roles in U.S. Innovation Drive
With the U.S. government hampered by financial constraints and political divisions, state policymakers are pressing new initiatives—often with partners in business, universities and foundations—to improve the climate for science-based innovation, experts said at the AAAS Forum on Science and Technology Policy.
California is well-known for its $3 billion ballot measure to fund stem cell research and for its green-energy initiatives. Pennsylvania is pursuing an ambitious program to promote energy independence, biosciences, nanotech and 21st century manufacturing. Georgia has set aside $400 million to build research facilities and recruit top scholars. New Mexico, already home to two national laboratories and a booming high-tech sector, is joining with Virgin Companies Chairman Richard Branson to build a spaceport.
"We read about a few states in the headlines," said Mary Jo Waits, director of the Pew Center on the States, "but people would be amazed at how many states are putting in initiatives to support... research and development."
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