military strength, public health and safety, and the quality of our lives. Individuals,
companies, governments, universities, and other organizations fund, conduct, disseminate,
and acquire science and technology for a myriad of purposes. Among the purposes: providing for
communications tools; preventing and treating disease, illness, and injury; developing new
nutrition, crop yields, and food safety; reducing emissions; remediating environmental damage;
improving energy efficiency and expanding energy production; exploring space; improving and
enhancing education; and understanding the origins of our universe and its governing rules.
The federal government supports a wide range of research and development (R&D) activities that
support federal agencies in the conduct of their missions; underpin development of new fields of
science and technology; enable innovation and productivity improvements that support economic
growth and job creation; and support policymaking in areas such as regulation. In addition, the
federal government plays a role in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)
education. Many federal government programs seek to foster a strong U.S. science and
engineering workforce for industry, government, and academia. Federal agencies also collect and
disseminate data that bear on science, technology, and innovation, including public and private
s scientific and engineering workforce.
Congress has an extensive role in federal science, technology, and innovation policies, including
authorizing programs and funding, making appropriations, and conducting oversight activities.
The following table provides names and contact information for CRS experts on these issues.