In a world flooded with 24/7 hour news coverage, we can be left feeling that it’s all bad news. Uncertainty in many Middle Eastern and North African States, severe damage and loss of innocent life by natural disasters, the threats of a nuclear Iran and a nuclear capable North Korea and the current debate that government cannot accomplish what it is charged to do.
Yet, there is a countervailing force: Science. We still have science and all that it yields. Scientific advancement and technological development continues to provide exciting, inspiring and world-changing solutions. Support for initiatives which advance science and its follow on reduction to practice remain a shared value. To increase that value, associated international partnerships should be increased in every responsible country around the globe as a strategy to leverage resources.
In the past year there were a tremendous amount of scientific discoveries and societal gains. Both the U.S. and Israel have changed the energy procurement game. No longer is it solely where the natural resources lie, but who is innovative enough to access it in ways never before.
New technology in drilling and surveying implemented by a US-Israeli corporate entity (Noble, Delek, Avner) allows Israel to dream of near term energy security. The same can be said of the United States. Our commitment to advancing and developing new methods in engineering have led to the energy harvesting of the Balkan Oil Shale Field in North Dakota, in the Gulf of Mexico and on-shore natural gas production. We are no longer subject to the whims of the terror supporting states within OPEC.
This reality was unthinkable just five years ago. Israel may soon become a voting member of CERN, the European Center for Nuclear Research, credited with discovering the Higgs-Boson. Israel has contributed funding and scientists to the lab for over twenty years. The US has invested $500 million dollars in CERN whose fame is tied to the “God Particle” that seeks to answer life’s fundamental questions.
The miracles of science have solutions for all challenges. We just have to find them. Science’s impact can extend to all and should be valued as such. Scientific collaboration, leads to more science, which produces more societal value.
The publication of the 2013 US-Israel Innovation Index (USI3) seeks to help make that value more tangible by tracking scientific cooperation. Consistent with the mission of the United States Israel Science & Technology Foundation, the USI3 measures bi-lateral innovation cooperation between the United States and Israel and also compares the relationship to the United States and its relationships with 15 other countries. It provides year over year comparisons for academic, industrial, government and personal relationships which form the bases for innovative collaboration.
Our organization was pleased to see the confirmation of a strong US-Israel relationship in the USI3. While first in the governmental sphere, the relationship also ranks first in the number of stocks cross-listed on both exchanges as well as the per capita patents granted by the United States Patent Trade Office for Israeli technologies and US companies receiving patents from Israel. We also see the index as mechanism to identify where improvements can be made, to continue to strengthen the unbreakable U.S.-Israel scientific bond. What could be the most important finding is that the U.S.-Israel relationship is balanced and broad based. While the U.S. relationship with comparator countries displayed a wide variation among indicators, Israel scored in most metrics.
Support for international scientific cooperation can only originate from strong evidence that the relationships are producing definitive results. Anecdotally, we know this to be true but what the Index provides is statistical evidence to justify the US-Israel innovative relationship and making a concise argument for why the bond needs to continue.
You can find more information about the US-Israel Science & Technology Foundation at usistf.org.