Science Policy Approved

Article excerpt

Amid a flurry of legislative activity before heading home for November elections, the House of Representatives approved the National Science Policy Study (H.R. 578) by resolution.

Commissioned by House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) and authored by Science Committee Vice-Chairman Vernon Ehlers (R-MI), the report, Unlocking Our Future: Toward a New National Science Policy, will guide the development of the United States' long-term science and technology policy. The report is not without its critics, however.

During the floor debate, Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) spoke on behalf of Democrats' concerns with the study. "We find the report needs to address four critical areas: the role of underrepresented populations in the fields of science and technology, social and behavioral sciences, K-12 science and math education, and the challenges of environmental quality," Johnson said.

Ehlers said he understands concerns raised about the report's limited scope. Some groups "believe that we should have gone further, and indeed we should have and would have in certain subject areas had we had the time," Ehlers said. …