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1 week and counting: Don't cut the research that fuels the US economy
Date:2/22/2013

WASHINGTON, DC With only one week left before sequestration is to take effect, America's research community sustained its call for an end to the across-the-board cuts to discretionary spending that will severely restrict the nation's ability to invest in the basic scientific research that drives innovation and produces economic growth. Sequestration will reduce federal funding for scientific research by nearly $95 billion over the next nine years, which will result in a reduction of U.S. GDP by at least $203 billion. The net impact will be 200,000 fewer jobs per year between 2013 and 2016, or a 0.2 percent impact on the U.S. unemployment rate.

American industry depends on the steady pipeline of knowledge, discovery and innovation that flows from the federally funded scientific research conducted at universities across the nation. The U.S. economy depends on the ability of American industry to use this innovation to create new technologies and new jobs. Since World War II, federally-supported science-driven innovation has fueled half of all economic growth in the United States. It spawned the biotech and semiconductor industries; gave us tools like the laser, GPS and MRI; and through the World Wide Web and the Internet, has entirely changed the way we communicate and conduct commerce.

In individual video messages calling on Congress to stop the sequester, researchers and university officials outlined some of the ways federal investments in basic scientific research pay economic and other dividends and some of the ways these dividends are threatened by sequestration.

"Many people don't appreciate the value of research and what it means to our economy; America has always been built on innovation," says Joseph DeSimone of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University. In the past, he explains, private sector facilities like Bell Labs drove much innovation, but these labs don't exist today. "
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Contact: Lauren Pulte
lpulte@qga.com
202-429-6875
The Science Coalition
Source:Eurekalert

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