President Obama has launched an “Educate to Innovate” campaign to improve the participation and performance of America’s students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). This campaign will include efforts not only from the Federal Government but also from leading companies, foundations, non-profits, and science and engineering societies to work with young people across America to excel in science and math.
As part of the campaign, this Administration hopes to do a series of events, announcements and other activities that build upon the President’s “call to action” and address the key components of national priority.
I call this post the next frontier for contracting dollars because I truly believe we should be aware of what the government is going to do at a fundamental level about true economic recovery. I have read a lot lately about jobs (and even posted about it before). One of the key topics that continues to be discussed is how there is lack of innovation, invention, and original ideas and thoughts. I would argue that this is basically true and that the worldwide economy is seeing the effects of a changing paradigm. Information abundance is leading us somewhere… and for the foreseeable future there will be a need for high level of innovation and invention – and a high level of government involvement and therefore contracts, grants, and dollars.
Forgive me for being a moderate “Trekky,” but have you ever noticed the form of currency used in sci-fi movies, like Star Trek? The answer is that there is none. In Star Trek: First Contact, Capt. Picard states, “The economics of the future is somewhat different. You see, money doesn’t exist in the 24th century. The acquisition of wealth is no longer the driving force in our lives. We work to better ourselves and the rest of humanity.” In order to get there, it is assumed by many online ramblings that the replicator (an item that makes basically anything) must be created so that there is no need for material things.
I am one that believes that if we can dream it, we can achieve it. The only way to do that will be with some original ideas – perhaps no old concepts. Nonetheless, education will have to drive this shift at some level. I would certainly be on the look out for education initiatives that start to foster grants and awards for innovation and forward-thinking concepts.
I am interested to hear what you think about innovation in general. What about education? Contracting opportunities?