AUSTIN (KXAN) — Leaders with the Science & Technology Action Committee (STAC) warn the United States is losing the race for global leadership in science and technology.
“The State of Science in America” report surveyed workers in five key sectors including health care, K-12 education, STEM, military/national security and business.
“The biggest takeaway that I took from it was that there’s a worry amongst this group of folks who are working in professions. Health care and education, the military, all of whom think that the United States is on a path or has already lost its competitive edge in science and technology,” said Sudip Parikh with the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
The STAC analysis looked into the obstacles it said are keeping the country from advancing in science and technology.
“The number one thing that almost all of the sectors of workers identified is education, K-12 education,” said Parikh.
“We have to do a better job of educating our children. If we’re going to compete globally, we have to have high science and math scores,” Parikh continued.
The report calls for more federal investment in K-12 education in science and technology.
“It means focusing on ensuring that math and science skills along with reading, art and other parts of the curriculum are strong so that our students are ready for that undergraduate work and graduate work that’s going to be required to keep us globally competitive.’
Parikh said for the U.S. to lead globally there needs to be a national priority in science and technology for decades to come.
“Texas is a wonderful example of this. A Nobel Prize winner from the state of Texas is the reason that we have immunotherapy for cancer, and it’s grown out of some of the academic centers in Texas,” he said.
“A lot of the funding comes from the U.S. national government. It’s a wonderful interplay that we’ve built here in the United States, and we’ve got to continue to grow it.”