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China, U.S. Universities and the U.S. Science and Technology Workforce
The US is presently searching for the wisest policies relevant to the relationships between US universities and China. China is the only country that can supplant the United States as the economic, scientific, technological, military and ideological world leader. Consciousness of that, coupled with reports of serious misappropriations of US intellectual property, have led federal leaders to propose and, in some cases, to implement serious limits on collaborations between US and Chinese scientists and engineers in “strategic” research fields as well as to introduce serious impediments to the education of Chinese nationals by US higher education institutions. These actions are aimed at protecting US intellectual property and scientific ideas. In this talk, the proposals are briefly summarized. Analyses of scientific R&D, international scientific collaboration and the US scientific workforce are then presented. These analyses indicate that the limitations and impediments could very well weaken US capabilities and standing in some of the fields the nation is most anxious to protect unless those limitations and impediments are very carefully crafted. Some policy recommendations are provided.
Arthur Bienenstock is co-chair, with Peter Michelson, of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Committee on International Scientific Partnerships. He has also been a member of the National Science Board, the governing body of the National Science Foundation, since 2012. From November, 1997 to January, 2001, he was Associate Director for Science of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. At Stanford, he is Special Assistant to the President for Federal Research Policy, Associate Director of the Wallenberg Research Link and a professor emeritus of Photon Science, having joined the faculty in 1967. He was Vice Provost and Dean of Research and Graduate Policy during the period September 2003 to November 2006, Director of the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource from 1978 to 1977 and Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs from 1972 to 1977.