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AAAS Signs On to ‘Innovation: An American Imperative’

A call to action issued today by AAAS and a broad coalition of CEOs and other organizations urges Congress to enact policies and make investments that ensure the United States remains the global innovation leader.

"The history of human progress and growth in our nation is really the history of U.S. scientific discovery and investigation," said Rush Holt, AAAS CEO and executive publisher of the Science family of journals. "This proclamation reflects a united voice of those concerned about maintaining U.S. preeminence in discovery and innovation."

The United States currently ranks 10th in R&D investment among Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) nations as a percentage of gross domestic product.  At this pace, China will surpass the United States in R&D intensity in about eight years.

"Our leadership is now at risk because of years of under-prioritizing federal scientific research investments and policies that promote innovation," said the statement, which was signed by 10 CEOs and over 250 industry, science, and higher education organizations.

The document, "Innovation: An American Imperative," calls on federal policy-makers and legislators to:

  • End sequestration's deep cuts to federal investments in R&D
  • Make permanent a strengthened federal R&D tax credit
  • Improve student achievement in science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM)
  • Reform U.S. visa policy
  • Streamline or eliminate costly and inefficient regulations
  • Reaffirm merit-based peer review
  • Stimulate further improvements in advanced manufacturing

"Our nation knows what it takes to innovate: a sustained commitment to scientific research, a world-class workforce, and an economic climate that rewards entrepreneurship and innovation," the statement said.

[Credit for associated teaser image: Flickr/USCapitol]