On life support: Future of science focus of lecture at UH

HOUSTON, Nov. 9, 2006 Former presidential adviser for science and technology policy, Neal Lane, is coming to the University of Houston to address the uncertain future of science in the United States.

As part of the annual UH Tenneco Distinguished Lecture Series, Lane, who also is the former director of the National Science Foundation, will speak in the main auditorium of the UH Science and Engineering Research and Classroom Complex at 5 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 28. The lecture is free and open to the public.

In his talk, "U.S. Science Glorious Past, Uncertain Future," Lane will address three issues that will directly affect science: money, people and public understanding. He also will touch on three areas that he believes U.S. science and technology policy is in disarray: health and medical research; energy and environment; and space science and exploration. The lecture will conclude with thoughts about what might be done to address these concerns.

"The United States has enjoyed six decades of extraordinary scientific advancement made possible, in part, by enlightened policies to support basic research and encourage the use of new scientific knowledge and technologies to benefit the American people," Lane said. "But America indeed the world is in a very different state than it was at the end of World War II. The future of U.S. science is uncertain, and many of its vital signs are not good."

Widely regarded as a distinguished scientist and educator, Lane has written and presented extensively on topics that include theoretical, atomic and molecular physics and science and technology policy. He is the Malcolm Gillis University Professor at Rice University. He also holds appointments as a senior fellow of the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, where he is engaged in science and technology policy, and in the Department of Physics and Astronomy.

Lane served in the federal government from 1998 to

Contact: Lisa Merkl
University of Houston

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