Major Technology Advances that Began with Federal Research Funding and Support [SLIDESHOW]

Feb. 6, 2014
Federal funding matters: Learn which innovations got their start with government funding and support.

Quick question: What do Google, artificial prosthetics, smartphone technologies, and the shale gas revolution all have in common? 

If you answer that they each got their start as federally funded and supported basic research projects, you're correct.

In the next several slides, you will discover how these and other critical innovations can be traced back to U.S. Federal research and development (R&D) support and funding. If this doesn't convince you of the importance government backing plays in driving major technological advances, which drives our economy, I fear you'll never be convinced.

There must be a few non-believers. That the U.S. maintain this investment should be a no-brainer, but you couldn't tell that by U.S. budget commitments. While the U.S. continues to dominate global share of R&D funding, its lead continues to erode--while China and other Asian nations are racing to catch up.

Peter Singer, Science and Technology Policy Fellow at MIT's Washington Office, gathered together the stories upon which this gallery is based. Learn more details by reading his report, Federally Supported Innovations: 22 Examples of Major Technology Advances that Stem from Federal Research Support, published last month.

So... do you think government should continue its support of basic R&D?

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