A two-year spending package, passed by Congress in the wee hours of February 9 and signed into law by President Trump hours later, could add to the coffers of U.S. science agencies. The bipartisan deal raises the caps on defense and nondefense discretionary spending by nearly $300 billion overall. Nondefense discretionary spending gets a $63 billion boost in fiscal year 2018, and another $68 billion in FY 2019 (the spending year that starts October 1, 2018).
U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA), a member of the Bipartisan Congressional HBCU Caucus, joined Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Tim Kaine (D-VA) to help improve the financial health of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU), some of our nation’s most critical higher education institutions.
A University of Michigan (U-M) team has announced plans to develop an “unhackable” computer, funded by a new $3.6 million grant from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The goal of the project, called MORPHEUS, is to design computers that avoid the vulnerabilities of most current microprocessors, such as the Spectre and Meltdown flaws announced last week.
The administration genuinely appears to be motivated to accomplish real human space exploration goals within its term of office. It remains unclear, however, whether a sufficient budget will actually be allotted to enable execution of its ambitious policy, either in whole or in part. Federal budgets are challenging—and will be for the foreseeable future--but there is an extremely compelling reason why the administration should go “all in” on this plan and propose a budget that will enable the United States to aggressively move forward.
Industry funding of university research is an important component of U.S. academic research and industrial innovation, especially as federal funding for universities continues to decline and companies cut back on basic, intramural research. However, U.S. states vary dramatically on the extent to which their research universities attract industry support.
A $4.8 million grant from the National Science Foundation is helping the Association of American Colleges and Universities redesign how schools evaluate their STEM education efforts. The organization received $4.8 million to implement a new, interdisciplinary approach to STEM higher ed reform.
Code.org, the non-profit organization that aims to increase access to computer science education, has raised $12 million in philanthropic funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Infosys Foundation USA and PricewaterhouseCoopers. The announcement came as part of a Computer Science Education Week kickoff event in San Mateo. Meanwhile, eight states, 76 school districts and 102 organizations nationwide made pledges to expand access to computer science education to millions of students.
The 54-year-old observatory, with a fixed dish built into a depression in the karst hills of western Puerto Rico, is the largest single-dish radio telescope in the world—at least until a larger rival in China becomes fully operational. It is used for a range of sciences, including radio astronomy in deep space and radar studies of planets, asteroids and Earth’s atmosphere.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded $8.2 million through its Science of Learning program to fund 24 new projects that will advance theoretical insights and fundamental knowledge of learning principles, processes, environments and constraints.
The United States enacted the world’s first research and development tax credit in 1981. The size of the credit is rather small: The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that it will cost taxpayers $57.5 billion over five years. Unlike most other special provisions, the credit actually addresses a clear market failure. When firms invest in research, most of the benefit goes to society in general.