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AIBS Highlights Value of Federal Investments in Innovation

April 23, 2014

 

AIBS called on Congress to support sustained investments in biological research in testimony to the Senate Appropriations Committee.

The testimony highlighted a few of the outcomes of federal support for research as part of an upcoming hearing on "Driving Innovation through Federal Investments."

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is supporting a decade long initiative to digitize scientific specimens. The effort is bringing together biologists, computer science specialists, and engineers in multi-disciplinary teams to develop innovative imaging, robotics, and data storage and retrieval methods. These tools will expedite the digitization of collections and contribute to the development of new products or services of value to other industries.

Multiple agencies support long-term environmental research that improve our understanding of the living world and contribute to informed decision-making. The Long Term Ecological Research Network, supported by NSF, conducts research on ecological issues that can last decades and span huge geographic areas. The Department of Agriculture's Long-Term Agro-Ecosystem Research network will assess agricultural resilience to rapid environmental change, the provision of ecosystem services from agricultural lands, and tradeoffs associated with different agricultural systems.

Fast paced advancements in computing capabilities are opening new doors for scientific research. In the field of biology, researchers are turning to big data to investigate the expression of our genes, causes of coastal algae blooms, and the diversity of microbes living in the human body.

Read the full testimony.

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