APS News

APS and Scientific Societies Endorse United Statement on Research

The APS, the Acoustical Society of America, the American Association of Physics Teachers, the American Crystallographic Association, the American Astronomical Society, the American Association of Physicists in Medicine, the American Vacuum Society and the American Geophysical Union joined the American Institute of Physics and 97 other scientific organizations in issuing a "Unified Statement on Research." The statement calls for a doubling of the federal budget for research by the year 2009, and was released on October 22 at a U.S. Capitol press conference.

Legislation which supports much of the coalition's goal - the "National Research Investment Act of 1998 (S.1305)" - was recently introduced by Senator Phil Gramm (R-Texas) and Senator Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.). The bill calls for a doubling of federal funding for basic scientific, medical and pre-competitive engineering research over the next decade. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), the powerful chair of the Budget Committee, threw his support behind the bill; he was joined by Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.). Domenici vowed to make the bill a priority. Gramm and Lieberman are confident they can round up the 51 co-sponsors needed to ensure passage. In the House, George Brown (D-Calif.) is offering his "Investment Budget" that would increase R&D 5 percent a year, which is not incompatible with doubling research in 10 years.

Dr. Ronald Breslow, Immediate Past President of the American Chemical Society; Dr. D. Allan Bromley, former science advisor to President Bush and APS President; Dr. Winfred Phillips, President Nominee of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers; and representatives of the more than 100 professional societies were present at the press conference to discuss the economic, public health, environmental and historical significance of research funding and the coalition's goals.

Read the full text of the joint statement. A complete list of the endorsing organizations can be accessed at http://www.chemcenter.org/decade.html.

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Editor: Barrett H. Ripin