by Semiconductor Industry Association
The House Science Committee today will consider legislation to authorize federal funding for key research and technology programs. The America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2015 (H.R. 1806) would allow for needed investments in agencies that drive growth and innovation in the semiconductor industry and throughout our economy, including the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the Department of Energy’s Office of Science.
SIA yesterday sent a letter to House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) thanking the Committee for their work to reauthorize funding for these critical programs. As the bill advances through the legislative process, we hope funding will be elevated to levels that ensure America remains the global innovation leader.
Modern technology, enabled by semiconductors, has revolutionized the way we work, communicate, travel, harness energy, treat illness and entertain. But scientific and technological breakthroughs don’t simply materialize out of thin air. They are the product of hard work, ingenuity and critical partnerships between industry, academia and government. In fact, many of the great inventions of our time – the Internet, the Global Positioning System (GPS), the laser, and the large-scale integrated circuit, among numerous others – were discovered through basic research performed at American universities and funded jointly by private industry and the federal government.
This partnership has a proven record of success. Basic scientific research funded through federal agencies has yielded tremendous dividends, helping launch technologies and companies – including tech giants like Google – that underpin America’s economic strength and global competiveness. And the semiconductor industry has held up its end of the partnership, investing one of the greatest shares of revenue in research and development (R&D) of any industry ($33 billion in 2013).
We ask the federal government to maintain its end of the partnership by recommitting to robust and sustained investments in basic research and achieving the vision outlined in the original America COMPETES Act. Doing so will help ensure the U.S. semiconductor industry continues to lead the global market and America remains the world’s technology leader.
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