The Jan. 20 news article “Biden to give White House science office Cabinet status” reported on the Biden administration’s plan to elevate the importance of science and technology to tackle the greatest challenges of our time — from food, water and energy security to the threat of further pandemics to climate challenges. President Biden should be lauded for taking this important step, which will bring rigorous scientific thinking to the highest level of government, and he should be congratulated for bringing together top scientific minds to lead the White House science team, including the nomination of Eric Lander to Office of Science and Technology Policy director.
We can’t let the elevation of OSTP be only symbolic. The office must receive bipartisan support and the authority to create a national science and technology strategy that offers greater coordination across the more than 20 government agencies with scientific missions. We also must greatly increase federal investment in support of science and technology research, development and education.
Sudip Parikh, Mary Woolley and Keith R. Yamamoto, Washington
The writers are co-chairs of the Science & Technology Action Committee.