My Microsoft colleague, Elizabeth Grossman, has posted a thoughtful essay, entitled Investment in Federal Research Enables Innovation. In the essay, she reflects on today's passage of America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science (COMPETES) Reauthorization Act of 2010 by the U.S. Congress.
The AMERICA Competes Act outlines target funding levels and priorities for the research and education programs at several federal agencies, including the National Science Foundation and the Department of Energy. As Elizabeth notes, "Robust federal support for breakthrough research conducted throughout the U.S. is critical to fueling the ecosystems of government, industry and universities, allowing the U.S. to make discoveries and turn them into products that improve our nation's ability to compete globally."
After initial crafting, the bill faced a long and arduous process that involved many negotiations and compromises. Hence, final passage of AMERICA Competes is a holiday event worthy of celebration.