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61 Nobel Laureates endorse Obama

According to a news article on Nature, 61 Nobel prize winners have endorsed Obama and his vision for science – the largest scientific endorsement in any presidential election so far. In 2004, John Kerry got endorsed from 48 Nobel laureates. An excerpt from the article follows:

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As political and financial leaders in the United States struggled on Thursday to contain the meltdown on Wall Street, presidential contender Barack Obama released an 11-page “plan for science and innovation” that outlined aggressive investments in science and technology. The proposal includes a doubling of funding over ten years at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

The Obama supporters range from James Watson, a 1962 Nobel prize winner in physiology or medicine, to two of last year’s winners in physiology or medicine, Mario Capecchi and Oliver Smithies. In an “open letter to the American people,” they write: “The country urgently needs a visionary leader who can ensure the future of our traditional strengths in science and technology and who can harness those strengths to address many of our greatest problems: energy, disease, climate change, security, and economic competitiveness. We are convinced that Senator Barack Obama is such a leader.”

The Obama plan contains more specific details on science policies than had been released previously (see the questions he answered for Nature on related topics here: http://www.nature.com/news/2008/080903/full/455446a.html). For instance, he plans to restore the presidential science advisor to a position that reports directly to the president; details a “fast track” system to permit international students who study at US universities to begin working in the United States without having to return home first; emphasizes research into “smart grids” to improve efficiency in the nation’s electrical distribution system; and talks of strengthening the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Pentagon’s hub for cutting-edge research.

Besides the NIH, agencies that would benefit from funding increases would include the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Energy’s Office of Science and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. As a senator, John McCain has voted in favour of such increases in the physical sciences, under the rubric of the popular America COMPETES Act.

Some of the Nobelists supporting Obama say they did so because they want change after eight years of President George W. Bush’s administration, during which researchers have complained of manipulation of science for political ends. “We need new and visionary leadership,” says Bob Horvitz, a biologist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. “Senator Obama will engage top scientists in our nation’s great challenges.”

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September 30, 2008 Posted by | general, news, politics, Science and Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Web 2.0…Linking everything to everything

I bet you will search the web for Web 2.0 or Digital Ethnography. Go ahead, teach the machine…!

April 22, 2008 Posted by | general, Science and Technology, videos | , , , , | Leave a comment