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Statement: U.S. Innovation and Competition Act Passage

June 9, 2021

The Science and Technology Action Committee today released the following statement applauding the Senate’s passage of the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act and encouraging support for our priorities in the House legislative proposal. The Committee also calls for increased funding for the Office of Science and Technology Policy to coordinate and fund essential cross-agency partnerships.

Keith Yamamoto and Sudip Parikh, co-chairs of the Science & Technology Action Committee, released the following statement on behalf of the Committee:

Yesterday’s Senate passage of the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act is a historic moment for science and technology in the United States. Once funded, it will catalyze our nation’s technological and scientific capacity by providing crucial federal investments in research, development and education to help us tackle both existing and emerging societal threats and ensure our nation’s continued competitiveness in the global economic arena.

The strong bipartisan support for the innovation bill is an important milestone on the path to increased focus and investment in American competitiveness. Together with the bipartisan momentum of the ongoing House legislative proposal, we are within reach of progress not seen in generations. We look forward to working with both chambers to ensure that the critical core elements and sound policies to realize a dynamic U.S. research and innovation enterprise are articulated in a final bill that moves swiftly to President Biden. 

There is much that Congress can and must do now as part of the parallel appropriations process. The bill’s call for the Office of Science and Technology (OSTP) Director to bring together agency leaders from across the government to report on opportunities to collaborate is particularly important, as it would enhance our ability to address the biggest challenges and maximize the effectiveness of our investments.  We urge Congress to enable this effort by appropriating the necessary funding to OSTP to motivate and incentivize critical cross-agency coordination. 

In addition, Congress should work toward increasing federal investment in science and technology to 1.4% of GDP, as called for in the Science and Technology Action Plan. This level of funding will supercharge our ability to out-innovate existential threats facing our nation and fuel societal and economic progress for all Americans.  

The Science & Technology Action Committee (STAC) is a group of 25 non-profit, academic, foundation, and corporate leaders working to dramatically strengthen U.S. science and technology. The Committee is co-chaired by: Bill Novelli, Professor Emeritus and founder of Business for Impact at Georgetown University and former CEO of AARP, Sudip Parikh, CEO, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and Executive Publisher of the Science Family of Journals, Mary Woolley, President & CEO of Research!America, and Keith Yamamoto, Vice Chancellor for Science Policy and Strategy at UCSF and President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).