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Communications of the ACM

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Research Outlays to Decline Next Year

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Research and development spending by governments and corporations in the United States and Europe could decline in 2013 as a result of weak economies and large national debts, according to a Battelle Memorial Institute forecast. 

U.S. inflation-adjusted R&D spending is expected to fall by 0.7 percent in 2013 on the assumption that lawmakers will resolve the fiscal cliff issue, but spending could decline further in the absence of a resolution. U.S. inflation-adjusted R&D spending growth averaged about 4 percent annually from 2004 to 2007, but since 2009 growth has failed to outpace inflation. 

Globally, the U.S. remains the leader in R&D, spending $418.6 billion in 2012 in current-dollar terms while China spent $197.3 billion, but Battelle predicts that China could achieve R&D spending parity with the U.S. in 2022 and possibly 2019 if the fiscal cliff remains unresolved. 

Worldwide R&D spending in 2013 is projected to increase by 3.7 percent, or $53.7 billion, to nearly $1.5 trillion, of which the largest increase of $22.9 billion is expected to come from China. The U.S. is predicted to spend $423.7 billion on R&D in 2013, with academic research comprising more than 60 percent of the basic research conducted nationwide.

From The Wall Street Journal
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Abstracts Copyright © 2012 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


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