The James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University in Houston, Texas -- through its Science and Technology Policy Program, the Transnational China Project and the Technology, Society and Public Policy Program -- is hosting an international workshop to identify and examine key issues preventing fruitful scientific collaboration among researchers working on both sides of the Pacific Ocean. Officials from and scientists from universities in Beijing, Chapel Hill, Hong Kong, Houston, Los Angeles, Nanjing, Shanghai, Singapore, Taipei, Tainan, and Washington D.C. are meeting at Rice University to discuss ways to facilitate scientific and engineering research across borders. While all of the participants share an interest in improving cooperation in science and engineering research, a number of policy issues prove problematic. Difficulty in obtaining visas to attend science conferences, the framing of benign projects as security sensitive, and even the decentralized research structure in the United States hinder collaboration with Asian partners. As cooperation between researchers in the United States and Asia increases in scale and importance, it is essential that any barriers to successful partnerships be identified and corrected.
The goal of the workshop is to develop a set of findings and recommendations based on the workshop deliberations that: describe best practices for collaborations; determine cultural and policy barriers; recommend actions for universities and granting agencies to promote collaboration; and showcase successful collaborations as models for practices in the future.
Support for this program was generously provided by the Richard Lounsbery Foundation. Additional travel support was sponsored by the Quantum Magnetism Lab, Krishna Palem's Lab, Evan Siemann's Lab, and Dr. Neal Lane.