Chemicals and advanced materials comprise a broad sector that includes chemicals, catalysts, polymers, metals, ceramics, and nanomaterials—from products sold by the trainload to those that cost hundreds of dollars per gram. It is an innovation-intensive business: for example, the U.S. chemical industry is responsible for over one tenth of all patents filed in the United States.
R&D investments have become highly competitive between nations, with each looking to outspend the others to maintain a competitive edge. This internationalization of R&D now pits the U.S., China, Japan, and the EU against each other to develop breakthrough technologies that can be developed into marketable products that can build their country's export trade.
While strictly categorized as an emerging nation by the IMF, the Federative Republic of Brazil is the world’s fifth largest country in geographic size and population and sixth overall in gross domestic product (GDP). By 2040, Brazil’s economy is forecast to be the fourth largest in the world, behind China, the U.S., and India.
Gross domestic expenditures on R&D (GERD) in the Russian Federation nearly doubled (at constant prices) from 1998 to 2008, one of the highest growth rates at that time. Russia's 2013 R&D is forecast to grow to $38.5 billion, a 4.0% increase over the $37 billion spent in 2012.
India has averaged greater than 7% annual GDP growth since 1997, but the current outlook is unusually uncertain. Real GDP growth for 2012 is expected to be close to 5%, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The IMF's GDP growth forecast for 2013 increases to nearly 6% following various recent reforms. 2013 economic growth is expected to yield R&D spending growth of about 12.2% over that spent in 2012.
Continuing the trend it established more than a decade ago, China's commitment to R&D is expected to increase 11.6% in 2013, following an 11.3% increase in 2012. China's R&D is now 52% of that expected to be spent by the U.S. in 2013, compared to 43% just two years ago.
Half of the Top 40 R&D spending countries in the world are in Europe, but they only account for 22.6% of the total global spending. Another 14 European countries increase that spending by $10.7 billion (23.4% of the global total). Over the past five years, Europe has continuously declined in its share of global R&D spending.
The U.S., BRIC, and European countries account for about 70% of the R&D performed in the world. Countries in the rest-of-the-world (ROW) account for the remaining $500 billion. These countries are increasing their R&D investments at an average rate of nearly 5%.
We present the results of our annual survey of the global researcher community. Improvements in the sampling strategy and distribution of the survey continue to increase and diversify the respondent base. This diversity provides a unique perspective on the global R&D community representing countries from Argentina to Vietnam.
2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable answers from the University of Dayton Research Institute. Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.
2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable answers from Southwest Research Institute. Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.
2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable answers from Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.
2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable answers from NanoSteel. Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.
2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable answers from RTI International. Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.
2012 R&D Research Executive Roundtable answers from NASA Glenn Research Center. Changes in the R&D environment are driving research managers to look at different ways to support and grow their organizations.
Mandatory cuts to federal funding as outlined in the Budget Control Act, known as sequestration, will take place in early January, unless Congress takes action. More than 6,000 science and engineering students have hand-delivered a petition to the local offices of U.S. senators and House leaders, requesting that sequestration be halted because it would harm their future as innovators and hurt economic growth in the United States.
Mosquito control officials in the Florida Keys are waiting for the federal government to sign off on an experiment that would release hundreds of thousands of genetically modified mosquitoes to reduce the risk of dengue fever in the tourist town of Key West. If approved by the Food and Drug Administration, it would be the first such experiment in the U.S. Some residents, however, are worried about the risks.
After weathering concerns about everything from the safety of humans eating the salmon to their impact on the environment, Aquabounty was in a position to become the world's first company to sell fish whose DNA has been altered to speed up growth. But after positive feedback from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2010, the agency still has not approved the fish and the company could soon run out of money.
The amount of heat-trapping pollution the world spewed rose again last year by 3%. China was the biggest contributor to the increase, with only the U.S. and Germany decreasing their output among the top 10 polluters. Some scientists say it's now unlikely that global warming can be limited to a couple of degrees, which is an international goal.
Bai Chunli, as head of the largest research organization China, publicly expressed concern recently about when the Chinese scientific community will make an innovative, Nobel Prize-level scientific advance. Citing “negative elements,” he believes that despite massive investments in research and education, China’s scientific research is still weak and needs to improve.
As climate change begins to take the spotlight again as a political issue in the U.S., a once radical idea has resurfaced among both Republicans and Democrats: a carbon tax. On Tuesday, a conservative think tank held discussions about it while a more liberal think tank released a paper on it. And the Congressional Budget Office issued a 19-page report on the different ways to make a carbon tax less burdensome on lower income people.
In March, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission instructed power companies to re-evaluate the seismic and flooding hazards that their power plants face. Recent earthquakes in the eastern U.S., coupled with evidence of the results of the 2011 earthquake in Japan, have highlighted the importance of this effort in order to implement new design measures.
A California judge has tentatively ruled in favor of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in a wrongful termination lawsuit brought by a former computer specialist who alleged he was singled out in part because of his belief in intelligent design.
China's biggest rare earths producer, state-owned Baotou Steel Rare Earth (Group) Hi-tech Co., in an effort to shore up plunging prices of the materials used by makers of mobile phones and other high-tech products. Beijing is tightening control over rare earths mining and exports to capture more of the profits that flow to Western makers of lightweight batteries and other products made of rare earths.
Increasing demand for bioenergy feedstock is generating land-use conflicts and food vs. fuel controversies. An team of 11 scientists from seven European countries and the United States have recently published a study that gives scientific background to the debate. It supports a reassessment of the land available for bioenergy feedstock production.