APS News

The 7 Percent Solution

graphScience & Engineering Fuel the Economy...

"Since World War II, fully half of America's total economic growth has sprung directly from technological innovation. Most of this wealth-creating innovation is a direct result of research that has been underwritten by the federal government." - The Washington Times, January 3, 1997

"Academic research in science has a 'social rate of return' in the form of lower prices, better products, and higher productivity that exceeds 20 percent. serious funding for science is a vital national investment." - U.S. News and World Report, May 19, 1997

But the Public Investment in R&D Is Sinking... 

We Must Increase the Public Investment in R&D...

Recently, 1,500 economists were asked: "If the Federal Government wanted to increase long-term economic growth, which one policy would have the most positive impact?" The number one response, beating all other responses by four to one, was "Spend more on Education and Research & Development." - Wall Street Journal, March 6, 1997 "The lag time between basic research and application is often 20 years," says David Gergen, Editor at Large, U.S. News and World Report. The economy is strong, a benefit of past public investments in science and engineering. Cutting the investment cuts future economic growth.

A 7% Increase Keeps America on the Path to a Balanced Budget.

"A 7% increase strikes a balance between the current fiscal pressures and the need to invest in activities that enable long-term economic growth and productivity." - Leaders representing 1.5 million Scientists, Mathematicians, and Engineers, March 4, 1997

"Congress finds that an increased level of investment in basic science is essential to maintaining the position of the U.S. as technological leader of the world. The purpose of this Act is to double the Federal funding for science over 10 years."
- S. 124, National Research Investment Act of 1997

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Editor: Barrett H. Ripin