Best Science Minds Still in US, But Other Countries Gaining

January 17, 2010

(ChattahBox)—A recent report released by the National Science Board, which was presented to President Obama and Congress, shows that the United States continues to be the world leader in science and engineering. But the biennial report mandated by statute, also shows that other countries are gaining, as international investment in the sciences and technology is outpacing the U.S.

The Science and Engineering Indicators Report for 2010 paints a picture of a country at the forefront of science achievements, research and development, education and patents for inventions.

According to an account of the study’s findings by the Wall Street Journal:

“The U.S. accounted for nearly a third of $1.1 trillion spent on research and development globally in 2007, minted more science and engineering doctorates than any other country, and led the world in innovative activity.”

However, in recent years U.S. spending in science and technology has fallen behind other nations, such as China:

“For the 10 years ending in 2007, the most recent year for which the data were available, spending on research and development grew between 5% and 6% annually in the U.S., Japan and the European Union. Similar spending in India, South Korea and Taiwan grew an average 9% to 10% a year over the same period. In China, it averaged more than 20%.”

The report shows that the United States is at the top when it comes to awarding natural sciences and engineering doctorates. Although about half of the advanced science degrees are obtained by foreign nationals, most of the degree holders remain in the United States. The report found that about 60% of temporary visa holders who earned doctorates in science in engineering in 1997, were still working in the United States.

The NSB is the 25-member policymaking body for the National Science Foundation and advisory body to the President and Congress on science and engineering issues.

Source: Wall Street Journal


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