Science Advisor Praises Obama For Measures To Promote Science
May 16, 2013
Since President Barack Obama took office in March 2009 he has managed to promote the role and restore the importance of science despite broad resistance from Congress toward funding science initiatives, Obama's senior science advisor John Holdren told lecture attendants at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey, last week.
Holdren has assisted Obama in restarting a number of science programs that were canceled under the previous administration. Speaking to an audience of 200, he said these programs were key to supporting the country's crucial role in spurring innovation on climate change, biomedicine and space. Unfortunately, the President has not been that successful in ensuring funding for new research projects, especially experimental ones, he noted.
One of Obama's major accomplishments is his success in reinvigorating a number of global task forces working to combat climate change. He sealed a major partnership agreement with China and India, two of the world's other big climate change contributors. In his measures to highlight the need to address climate change in a more adequate manner, Obama renamed the Climate Change Science Program (CCSP), which was chiefly focused on research, to the US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) to coordinate and integrate federal research on changes in the global environment.
As further proof of his measures to stress the importance of science to the country's wellbeing, Obama showed strong support of science in his 2014 budget, insisting that it is crucial to keep investing in the USGCRP and allocate funding to upgrade science and math education. He has earmarked money for preparing an extra 100,000 teachers of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) for grades K-12 and restarted investments in a Master Teaching Corps of prominent science and math educators.
The President is also seeking to prove the importance of science to young people and raise awareness among students about the work of researchers and innovators by inviting them to take part in events such as the White House science fairs.