AAA&S Report Calls for Increased Federal Investment in Research

October 2014

A new report from the American Academy of Arts & Sciences (AAA&S)—Restoring the Foundation: The Vital Role of Research in Preserving the American Dream—urges sustained federal investment in research, with specific emphasis on the importance of funding the very best science, including social and behavioral sciences.

According to the report, America’s economic successes have largely been thanks to our investments in scientific research. The report offers three prescriptions, with related implementing actions, for revitalizing America’s research enterprise:

  • Secure America’s leadership in science and engineering research—especially basic research—by providing sustainable federal funding and setting long-term investment goals. Recommended actions include achieving a growth rate of at least 4% for federal investment in basic research and adopting a multiyear approach to funding agencies that support research.
  • Ensure that the American people receive the maximum benefits from federal investments in research. The authors recommend streamlining burdensome regulations and expanding the science and technology assessment capacity of the Government Accountability Office.

  • Regain America’s standing as an innovation leader by establishing more robust national government-university-industry research partnerships. Recommended actions include convening a multisector summit on the “Future of America’s Research Enterprise” and removing government barriers to industry-university cooperation.

The recommendations are available in full on the AAA&S website.