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SSTI Digest

The latest reporting and analysis on breakthroughs in technology-based economic development research and issues that matter most to you. To receive the SSTI Weekly Digest via email, sign up here.

FY98 Budget:S&T Highlights

Last Thursday, the Clinton Administration released its detailed budget proposal for FY98. The requested 2% rise in research and development funding reflects the constraints facing discretionary spending programs: the call to balance the budget while costs for entitlement programs and debt service are growing.

White House, Governors Agree to Cooperate on Technology Issues

An agreement between the White House and the National Governors' Association (NGA) to establish a new mechanism, the U.S. Innovation Partnership, for coordinating federal and state technology efforts was announced by Vice President Gore and NGA's Lead Governors on Technology John G. Rowland, (R-CT), and Parris N. Glendening, (D-MD), earlier this week.

State-Federal Technology Executive for OSTP Sought

A State-Federal Technology Executive (SFTE) to serve in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) is being sought. The SFTE, sponsored by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), is a one year old initiative designed to encourage broad-scale science and technology cooperation between the states and the federal government.

NIH Center Seeking Comments on Strategic Plan

The National Center for Research Resources (NCRR) of the National Institutes of Health is seeking input as it updates its 1994 strategic plan, NCRR: A Catalyst for Discovery.

"Corporate Welfare" Salvos Largely Spare S&T

Calls for an end to "corporate welfare" increased this week with an unusual coalition unveiling a list of targeted programs and nine senators calling for a commission to review federal subsidies to companies.

A coalition of liberal and conservative organizations has agreed to a list of twelve federal programs, including three technology-related programs, that should be terminated or modified because they are "corporate welfare."

Federal S&T Spending Levels Off After Declining

The final appropriation for federal science and technology (FS&T) for FY 1997 is $43.4 billion, a slight increase (0.7 percent) over the FY 1996 appropriation, according to a new report by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS).

Women & Minorities Progress in S&E Field Limited

Women and minorities continue to take fewer high-level mathematics and science courses in high school; earn fewer bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in science and engineering (S&E); and remain less likely to be employed in S&E jobs than white males.

Guide to NIST Available

The new Guide to NIST, a one-stop information resource on the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), is now available. The 164-page volume describes hundreds of different research projects, grants, industry outreach programs, services and facilities. The publication updates a 1993 edition. Requests for the guide can be faxed to 301/926-1630.

USIP Holds Regional Meetings

The National Governors' Association (NGA), the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the Technology Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce are holding two more regional meetings to get input from state officials and others on the direction of the U.S. Innovation Partnership (USIP).

Western Europe Increasing Competitiveness in R&D Capacity

During the past decade, the European Union (EU) invested heavily in civilian R&D by building first-class laboratories and expanding higher education in science and engineering. Its efforts, according to the Data Brief for a new National Science Foundation report, Human Resources for Science and Technology: The European Region, are narrowing the lead the U.S. holds in R&D.

For example:

Overcapacity in Defense Labs

Department of Defense figures show there is approximately 35 percent excess capacity in its laboratory infrastructure, according to a General Accounting Office (GAO) report.

Home Page, Digest Changes Made

In a continuing effort to improve the services the State Science and Technology Institute provides to its users, SSTI has made changes to its World Wide Web home page and the SSTI Weekly Digest.