Essay on Science and Technology for Students and Children


500+ Words Essay on Science and Technology

Essay on Science and Technology: Science and technology are important parts of our day to day life. We get up in the morning from the ringing of our alarm clocks and go to bed at night after switching our lights off. All these luxuries that we are able to afford are a resultant of science and technology . Most importantly, how we can do all this in a short time are because of the advancement of science and technology only. It is hard to imagine our life now without science and technology. Indeed our existence itself depends on it now. Every day new technologies are coming up which are making human life easier and more comfortable. Thus, we live in an era of science and technology.

Essentially, Science and Technology have introduced us to the establishment of modern civilization . This development contributes greatly to almost every aspect of our daily life. Hence, people get the chance to enjoy these results, which make our lives more relaxed and pleasurable.

Essay on Science and Technology

Benefits of Science and Technology

If we think about it, there are numerous benefits of science and technology. They range from the little things to the big ones. For instance, the morning paper which we read that delivers us reliable information is a result of scientific progress. In addition, the electrical devices without which life is hard to imagine like a refrigerator, AC, microwave and more are a result of technological advancement.

Furthermore, if we look at the transport scenario, we notice how science and technology play a major role here as well. We can quickly reach the other part of the earth within hours, all thanks to advancing technology.

In addition, science and technology have enabled man to look further than our planet. The discovery of new planets and the establishment of satellites in space is because of the very same science and technology. Similarly, science and technology have also made an impact on the medical and agricultural fields. The various cures being discovered for diseases have saved millions of lives through science. Moreover, technology has enhanced the production of different crops benefitting the farmers largely.

Get the huge list of more than 500 Essay Topics and Ideas

India and Science and Technology

Ever since British rule, India has been in talks all over the world. After gaining independence, it is science and technology which helped India advance through times. Now, it has become an essential source of creative and foundational scientific developments all over the world. In other words, all the incredible scientific and technological advancements of our country have enhanced the Indian economy.

essay about science and technology amid the changing world

Looking at the most recent achievement, India successfully launched Chandrayaan 2. This lunar exploration of India has earned critical acclaim from all over the world. Once again, this achievement was made possible due to science and technology.

In conclusion, we must admit that science and technology have led human civilization to achieve perfection in living. However, we must utilize everything in wise perspectives and to limited extents. Misuse of science and technology can produce harmful consequences. Therefore, we must monitor the use and be wise in our actions.

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  • Science and Technology Essay


Essay on Science and Technology

Science and technology is the ultimate need of an hour that changes the overall perspective of the human towards life. Over the centuries, there have been new inventions in the field of science and technology that help in modernizing. Right from connecting with people to using digital products, everything involves science and technology. In other words, it has made life easy and simple. Moreover, humans now have to live a simple life. There is modern equipment explored by tech experts to find something new for the future.

Science and technology have now expanded their wings to medical, education, manufacturing and other areas. Moreover, they are not limited to cities, but also rural areas for educational purposes. Every day new technologies keep coming, making life easier and more comfortable.

Brief about Science

Throughout history, science has come a long way. The evolution of the person is the contribution to science. Science helped humans to find vaccines, potions, medicines and scientific aids. Over the centuries, humans have faced many diseases and illnesses taking many lives. With the help of science, medicines are invented to bring down the effect or element of these illnesses.

Brief of Technology

The mobile, desktop or laptop which you are using for reading this essay, mobile you use for connectivity or communication or the smart technology which we use in our daily life, are a part of technology. From the machinery used in the factory to the robots created all fall under tech invention. In simpler words, technology has made life more comfortable.

Advancement in science and technology has changed the modern culture and the way we live our daily life.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Science and Technology

Science and technology have changed this world. From TV to planes, cars to mobile, the list keeps on going how these two inventions have changed the world we see through. For instance, the virtual talks we do use our mobile, which was not possible earlier. Similarly, there are electrical devices that have made life easier.

Furthermore, the transportation process we use has also seen the contribution of science and technology. We can reach our destination quickly to any part of the world.

Science and technology are not limited to this earth. It has now reached mars. NASA and ISRO have used science and technology to reach mars. Both organizations have witnessed success in sending astronauts and technologies to explore life in the mars.

Other Benefits

Life is much simpler with science and technology

Interaction is more comfortable and faster

Human is more sophisticated


With the progress in science and technology, we humans have become lazier. This is affecting the human mind and health. Moreover, several semi-automatic rifles are created using the latest technology, which takes maximum life. There is no doubt that the third world war will be fought with missiles created using technology.

Man has misused the tech and used it for destructive purposes.

 Man uses them to do illegal stuff.

Technology such as a smartphone, etc. hurts children.

Terrorists use modern technology for damaging work.

Science and Technology in India

India is not behind when it comes to science and technology. Over the centuries, the country has witnessed reliable technology updates giving its people a better life. The Indian economy is widely boosted with science and technology in the field of astronomy, astrophysics, space exploration, nuclear power and more. India is becoming more innovative and progressive to improve the economic condition of the nation.

The implementation of technology in the research work promotes a better life ahead. Similarly, medical science in India is progressing rapidly, making life healthy and careful. Indian scientists are using the latest technology to introduce new medical products for people and offer them at the lowest price.

The Bottom Line

The main aim of writing this essay on science and technology is to showcase how humans have evolved over the years. Since we are advancing, the science and technology industry is also advancing at a faster pace. Although there are challenges, the road ahead is exciting. From interaction to transportation and healthcare in every sector, we will witness profitable growth in science and technology.


FAQs on Science and Technology Essay

1. How technology changed humans?

Technology has certainly changed the way we live our lives. Not a single piece of technology has failed and is continuously progressing. Be it the small industry or large, technology is a boom to your society. Technology can encompass ancient technologies like calculators, calendars, batteries and others. In future, the technology worlds include Blockchain technologies, smart cities, more advanced intelligent devices, quantum computers, quantum encryption, and others. Humans are updated with technology. This is a good sign for the coming generation.

2. What are the top technologies?

In the last few years, there has been a massive update in technology. From individuals to companies, everywhere, the use of technology is required. Some of the top technologies we are witnessing are

 Data Science

 Internet of Things


 Robotic Process Automation (RPA)

 Virtual Reality

 Edge Computing

Intelligent apps

Artificial Intelligence

Each of these technologies is in the use of daily life and even in making products. However, to use this technology, there is a requirement of skilled professionals and they need proper training to use them.

3. Is the topic Science and Technology an appropriate topic for students?

Yes, Science and Technology are one of the most important topics every student should know in their schooling. The world is growing rapidly at an increasing rate where one should be equipped with minimum knowledge about these concepts. Science and technology have become a part of everyone’s life today. Therefore understanding them is definitely important.

4. Does writing essays improve English?

Yes, of course it does. Writing is absolutely fundamental to language learning. As with anything, however, it is important to learn when and what you write. If you do it all the time, your writing might sound forced. If you only do it when you don't have anything better to do, you might find yourself procrastinating, and not do it at all. It's also a lot more effective to compose essays when you are in that mindset of an essay. So, to answer your question, yes. – Collections of Essay for Students of all Class in English

Role of Science and Technology in our Daily Life Essay

Role of Science and Technology in our Daily Life

The whole world is hit by a pandemic in 2020. Many people died because of the severe symptoms of the deadly virus COVID-19. At a time it appeared as if there is no solution to this problem and the situation was continuously deteriorating. This is the contribution of science and technology that numerous lives have been saved. The rigorous research for developing a vaccine against the deadly virus is on large scale. There are many preventive measures such as masks, sanitizers, and medicine which are the result of science and technology.

Short and Long Essay on Importance of Science and Technology in our Daily Life in English

I am writing here an informative essay on science and technology in daily life. I hope that it might be helpful to students in writing essays and completing projects and assignments.

Role of Science and Technology in our Daily Life Essay 10 Lines (100 – 150 Words)

1) Today science and technology is our daily need.

2) With the help of technology, cooking is a minute job.

3) Technologies helped to reduce our daily traveling time.

4) The necessity and usefulness of smartphones are speechless.

5) Technology is providing us with safe, secure, and comfortable living.

6) With science and technology, communication to the world end became possible.

7) Education from home is introduced by science and technology.

8) We can order our daily needs without going outside.

9) The trend of online payment saves our time and effort.

10) The newer gadgets made our daily tasks easier and more pleasurable.

Essay 1 (250 words) – How has Science and Technology made our Life Convenient


We all are living in the scientific era that is a modernized era and totally different from the past era. This change in our lives has been possible due to the miracle of science and technology. Science and technology are the backbones of new inventions and development.

Science is defined as knowledge, fact, or information. When this knowledge is put into practicality it turns out to be a technology or new innovation. Science enhances our curiosity after observation and technology is the result of working on this idea or curiosity by creativity. We cannot imagine our life without science and technology as it is involved in everything we do.

How Science and Technology has made our Life Convenient?

  • Science and technology have given rise to a number of machinery and tools in different fields. These tools and machinery have made our work easier than doing it manually. The use of these tools and machinery has helped in reducing the time, effort, and energy required in doing different works. Example- The invention of computers and the internet is a blessing for mankind. Today the use of computers has made work simple and less time taking for people.
  • Science and technology have brought specific changes in the education sector. The availability of online books, online classes, e-library has greatly helped the students and teachers. At present any type of information can be obtained with just one click.
  • Science and technology have boosted research and development in different fields. The result of these researches gives rise to new discoveries and innovations. It also helps in increasing the economy of the nation. In total the technological advancements in different sectors have led to the progress and development of different nations in the world.

Science and technology is no doubt the greatest blessing of God to humans. It must be used wisely so that there is no chance of any problem with the existence of other species on earth.

Essay 2 (1000 Words) – Role of Science and Technology in our Daily Life

Many of us do not have pictures of our grandparents. The camera and mobiles were not used by the people in those days. There were only options of studios to get our photos clicked. The scenario has abruptly changed and today there is at least one smartphone in every house. The advancement in technology gave birth to reduce this complexity. The things around us that make our life easier like refrigerators, television, mobile, computer, geysers, ovens, electricity, clothing, food, etc. are possible by science and technology. Smartphones have reduced the complexities up to great extent. We can pay online anywhere, make calls and video calls, get information about anything, and click our pictures whenever required.

Technology as an Application of Science

Science is the curiosity or thinking which comes into our mind after observation. The basic need is of working on the idea striking to mind. This gives rise to the invention of new technology. Therefore technology can be termed as the practical application of science. The terms science and technology are interrelated and dependent on each other. For a new technology to be evolved, thinking and working on an idea and knowledge is necessary. Science is the collection of facts and technology aids in verifying these facts and knowledge.

Application of Science and Technologies in Various Sectors of Life

  • In Daily Life – Everything we use in our daily life is a major contribution of science and technology. It has made our life easier up to a great extent. Earlier the works which required more time is made simpler and gets finished in small time. Starting from brushing, cooking, washing, bathing, travelling, communication, etc. involves less time to be finished.
  • In Teaching and Learning – The old method of studies involving the use of board, chalk, and duster have been replaced by the smart class system. The pictures are also shown along with an explanation which makes the study more understanding. Students can also attend online classes especially students of remote areas who are unable to attend classes. They have been benefitted from the advent of computers and the internet as a technology which is the gift of science.
  • In Agriculture – The old farming practices have been replaced by newer technologies. These technologies have reduced the workloads of farmers. There are new methods of farming that can boost the yield. The machines like harvesters, threshers, irrigation pumps, etc. have reduced work on the fields.

Genetically modified crops such as BT Cotton, BT Brinjal, and Golden rice, etc. designed to increase the quality and productivity of the crops. The fields are monitored by GIS technologies. Some recent technological developments in agriculture include sensors used in sensing moisture and temperature, photos generated by GIS, artificial Intelligence by using Robots, etc.

  • In the Medical sector – Science and technology are boon for the sector of medicine. It has lead to the development of cure and medicine for incurable diseases and increases the life span of human beings. During earlier times there were no facilities for diagnosis and treatment leading to the death of many people. Nowadays there are machines for detecting the disease and a cure is available to get the disease treated.

The biggest example is the deadly disease Cancer which has been a cause of many deaths but now there is an availability of medicine to get relief from the trauma of the disease. There are different methods developed to treat cancer in the early stages. The research for developing the cure for this deadly disease is still going on.

  • In Communication – Technologies like mobile phones, laptops, fax, telephones, microphones, have been invented by applying science. These advancements have made communication much smoother and faster. The messages and mails require seconds to be transferred from one person to another. A person can contact overseas and continue trade and development. The communication between our close ones and family members can be continued without worrying about the distance.
  • In Transportation – The days have flown when there were very few means of transportation and people used to travel for days to reach their destination. Nowadays there are several trains, buses, cars, bikes, air craft’s for travelling and making our journeys shorter and interesting. Science and technology lead to the invention of different means of transportation. Today we can reach any destination in India or the world securely without any tension.
  • In Defence – Science and technological advancements have led to the development of numerous missiles, aircraft, weapons used by a nation for protection. The DRDO (Defence Research and Development organization) is an agency working under the ministry of defence involving 52 research laboratories. The research work and development of new weapon technologies arise from here. Recently developed weapons like torpedo Varunastra a water weapon have been designed by Naval Science and Technological Laboratory, DRDO on 21 November 2020.

Science and Technology is Fostering Development in Space Too at the Fast Pace

The advent of science and technology in our daily life has made our life simpler and interesting. The advancement of human beings from an early man and leading a nomadic life to the modern man of the present is made possible by science. Today man is heading towards inhabiting the moon.

The unrevealed fact of space is resolving by the use of science and the development of technologies. Spacecrafts, satellites, space stations have been invented which gives us a clear picture of space. Researchers and scientists are continuously working to unwind more facts about space. Chandrayaan-2, Mangalyaan, satellite launching missions (PSLV-C40), etc are some great achievements of India.

Science and technologies have the utmost importance in the life of human beings. It has reduced the complexities and improved our living standards. The main issue lies in using these technologies in a negative way, which may lead to the destruction of the world. The best use of it will surely be a blessing for the human race and development.

FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions

Ans . Science has made our life easy and comfortable. It has helped in reducing our effort, money, and time.

Ans . Technology is said as the practical application of science, thinking, and ideas converted to invention.

Ans . The credit goes to the invention of the wheel which progressed into modern means of transportation like bullet trains and air crafts.

Ans . The advent of science and technologies led to the transformation of early man into civilized citizens.

Ans . The ‘early man’ started observing things and did many inventions that led to a change. Thus can be said the first scientist on earth.

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National Academies Press: OpenBook

The Fundamental Role of Science and Technology in International Development: An Imperative for the U.S. Agency for International Development (2006)

Chapter: summary.

Science and technology (S&T) capabilities are fundamental for social and economic progress in developing countries; for example, in the health sector, scientific research led to the development and introduction of oral rehydration therapy, which became the cornerstone of international efforts to control diarrheal diseases. Research also established that two cents worth of vitamin A given to children every six months could reduce child mortality in many countries by over one-third. In agriculture, rice-wheat rotation techniques have significantly enhanced food production in South Asia. In Central America, scientifically based natural resource management has been essential in developing the tourist industry, a major source of foreign currency.

International programs based on S&T are critical components of U.S. foreign policy, and particularly foreign assistance activities. Foreign assistance, probably more than any other international endeavor, provides opportunities for representatives of the U.S. government and its partners to join with political and economic leaders, intellectuals, and activists of dozens of countries in continuing, constructive dialogues and in concrete projects designed to enhance the quality of life of hundreds of millions of people. S&T are often the keystones for successful projects. The shared political and economic dividends from these activities can be enormous.

Maintaining and strengthening the contributions of the science, engineering, and medical capabilities of the United States to foreign assistance programs administered by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) are the themes of this report. USAID has unique and broad legislative authority to support innovative programs in developing countries, unrivaled field experience in

adapting technological advances to conditions and capabilities of poor countries, and many successes in integrating S&T into development activities. Therefore, as S&T capabilities become even more important for all countries in addressing traditional development issues and in coping with increased international flows of goods and services and the rapid spread of diseases and contaminants, the agency should play a central role in promoting the S&T-related programs of the U.S. government throughout the developing world.

Unfortunately, many developing countries, particularly the poor countries of Africa, do not have the human resources, physical and economic infrastructures, and access to capital to take full advantage of the S&T expertise and achievements of the United States and other industrialized countries. Nevertheless, countries at all levels of development have a strong desire for more robust S&T capabilities. And some capability to understand the potential and limitations of S&T, to select and effectively utilize suitable foreign technologies, and to develop local innovations is needed in every country.

The observations and recommendations set forth below on the opportunities for USAID to continue to play an important role in bringing to bear the S&T resources of the United States on foreign assistance programs are based on extensive consultations by the committee of the National Research Council (NRC) responsible for this report. The members and staff met with many government officials, foreign assistance practitioners, and S&T specialists in the United States and abroad. The committee sent small teams to six developing countries where USAID has significant programs. These countries and areas of special interest during the field visits were:

India: health;

Philippines: energy;

Bangladesh: agriculture and food security;

Guatemala and El Salvador: biodiversity; and

Mali: poverty in a resource-deficient country.

To help ensure that the conclusions of this report have broad significance, the committee addressed five development challenges that affect hundreds of millions of people each year. These challenges are:

Child survival;

Safe water;

Agricultural research;

Microeconomic reform; and

Prevention of and response to natural disasters.

International approaches to providing assistance to developing countries are changing; for example, global programs with important S&T dimensions that

target health, food production, environmental, and other problems omnipresent in the developing countries are growing in number and size while bilateral assistance is also increasing. A particularly important challenge for USAID is to find its role amidst the expanding network of dozens of foreign assistance providers, and particularly those providers of S&T-related assistance that draws on the limited capabilities of recipient countries to manage technology-oriented programs.

Beyond foreign assistance funds provided by governments, other financial flows to developing countries with S&T implications are growing. They include foreign direct investment by the private sector, remittances to friends and relatives in developing countries sent home by émigrés who are resident in the industrialized countries, contributions to development projects by private foundations, and initiatives designed to benefit local populations supported by multinational companies. At the same time, some donors and international banks are canceling debt repayment obligations of a few poor countries, thereby enhancing the ability of these countries to invest more in education, agriculture, and other activities essential to long-term development.

Private flows often support technical education and vocational training. Private foundations sometimes support long-term research programs in search of breakthroughs, and Table S-1 presents an important example in this regard. Of special significance are public-private partnerships in mobilizing financial and technological resources for use in poor countries. For example, results achieved by the Global Development Alliance, which links USAID and many private company capabilities, have demonstrated the positive affects of well-designed technology-oriented partnerships.

Meanwhile, within the U.S. government the responsibilities for programs in developing countries are rapidly diffusing, with USAID now financing only about 50 percent of the government’s international development programs. The independent Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), which was established by the U.S. government in 2002, has a multibillion-dollar development program directed to 23 countries although it has been slow in launching its initial projects. The Department of State has relatively new responsibilities for programs directed to combating HIV/AIDS, also with an annual budget in the billions of dollars. Its HIV/AIDS program is moving forward very quickly while a number of other U.S. departments and agencies, international organizations, and private foundations finance directly related activities (see Figure S-1 ).

A new office in the Department of State is responsible for planning and coordinating reconstruction activities following hostilities in countries around the globe. In addition to USAID, the Department of Defense continues to be a major contributor to reconstruction efforts in war-torn countries and plays an important role in responding to humanitarian disasters. Many other departments and agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Department of Agriculture, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Department of Energy, have expanded the international dimensions of their mission-

TABLE S-1 The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Grand Challenges to Global Health

oriented activities that potentially overlap with traditional development activities; and a large fraction of these programs have substantial S&T components.

Within this myriad of expanding activities, USAID supports hundreds of foreign assistance projects. But its role in carrying out its program is increasingly determined by dozens of congressional earmarks and White House initiatives, including many with S&T components. Some earmarks sustain important programs, but too often, earmarks do not have high development dividends when they focus on narrow special interests.

essay about science and technology amid the changing world

FIGURE S-1 Organizations involved in combating HIV/AIDS in developing countries.

In recent years, the agency has lost much of its direct-hire staff with technical expertise while other government departments and agencies with much stronger expertise in specific areas of interest to these organizations are expanding their activities in developing countries. This decline of technical expertise is the single most important reason why USAID has lost much of its S&T capability and reputation, which is critical in providing leadership in applying S&T to overcome development problems. Strong USAID internal capabilities are essential to guide the effective use of S&T resources in agency programs and to work collaboratively on problems of common interest with other organizations that have well-established technical capabilities.

Since S&T are integral components of many foreign assistance activities, consideration of USAID’s efforts to draw on the nation’s S&T capabilities must begin with consideration of USAID’s broader role in foreign assistance. USAID will, of course, continue to follow the decisions of the Administration and Congress to support program activities in many fields within USAID’s established program framework of governance and humanitarian assistance, reconstruction in war-torn areas, global health, and broadly defined economic growth; however, the agency should to the extent possible select a few areas of emphasis within this framework where it can concentrate resources and be an international leader in addition to its well-established leadership role in promoting democratic governance. Criteria for selecting such areas should include (1) high levels of develop-

ing country interest, (2) opportunities to have significant impacts on development, (3) relevance of USAID’s unique field experience, and (4) limited interest of other U.S. departments and agencies in providing substantial financial support for activities in the areas.

Programs in some or all of these areas will undoubtedly require substantial S&T inputs. One area for possible emphasis is health delivery systems, an area that the committee strongly supports. Other examples that the committee believes should be considered are small innovative firms, agriculture extension, and information technology. The program emphasis within each area should be on institution building, including establishment of research, education, training, and service capabilities.

In order to continue to support its current portfolio of programs as well as new activities, USAID needs stronger in-house technical staff capabilities. Given rigid congressional limitations on personnel levels, the agency will have no choice in the near term but to continue to rely heavily on a combination of direct-hire employees, assignees from other U.S. agencies, and contractor personnel to manage programs implemented by USAID’s partners. Nevertheless, as recommended in this report, the agency should recruit an adequate number of technically trained direct-hire employees to lead the design and evaluation of institution building and innovation activities, particularly in the areas of emphasis that are selected.

Against this background, the committee offers three overarching recommendations for consideration by USAID, the Department of State, the Office of Management and Budget, Congress, and other interested organizations. Suggestions of specific steps for implementing the recommendations are also set forth. The recommendations, if implemented, would strengthen USAID’s capabilities to play a more effective role in supporting technical innovation as a key to successful international development.

Most of the suggestions are general and cut across development sectors. As noted above, while carrying out the agency’s many programs mandated by Congress and the White House, USAID should also begin to focus on several areas of emphasis and concentrate available resources in these areas within the framework of the recommendations that are set forth below.

Recommendation 1: USAID should reverse the decline in its support for building S&T capacity within important development sectors in developing countries. Clearly, development of human resources and building relevant institutions must be at the top of the priority list if nations are to have the ability to develop, adapt, and introduce technological innovations in sectors of importance to their governments, the private sector, and their populations. To this end, USAID should:

Increase the number of USAID-sponsored participants in highly focused graduate training programs to develop future leaders in various S&T disciplines;

Increase financial support for applied research and outreach, including extension, at local institutions that can support host country priority programs of interest to USAID;

Provide increased financial support for development of local capacity to deliver public health services, including support for the establishment of strong schools of public health in developing countries;

Assist important institutions in developing countries in using broadband access to Internet and other modern technologies to strengthen their information acquisition and processing capabilities in support of S&T specialists; and

Sponsor expert assessments of the S&T infrastructures in countries where USAID has major programs when there are interested customers for such assessments.

Recommendation 2: USAID should strengthen the capabilities of its leadership and program managers in Washington and in the field to recognize and take advantage of opportunities for effectively integrating S&T considerations within USAID programs. The following steps by USAID would help achieve this objective.

Development of an S&T culture within USAID, with the agency leadership continually articulating in policy papers, internal discussions, and interactions with host governments the importance of (1) strengthening local S&T capabilities, (2) integrating these capabilities within a broad range of development activities, and (3) incorporating S&T in USAID programs;

Strengthening of USAID staff capabilities in S&T through (1) recruitment of senior officials with strong S&T credentials and good project management track records, (2) an increased number of entry-level positions devoted to young professionals with S&T expertise, and (3) career incentives for technically trained employees to remain at USAID, and particularly, promotion opportunities based on an individual’s success in applying technical skills to USAID programs; and

Appointment of a full-time S&T adviser to the administrator, with adequate staff, to alert the USAID leadership and program managers on a continuing basis to overlooked and new opportunities for programs with significant S&T content. Figure S-2 suggests how the adviser might be positioned within the agency.

Establishment of an independent S&T advisory mechanism to address technical issues of interest to the USAID leadership and to promote peer review throughout the agency (see Figure S-2 );

Establishment of a nongovernmental Innovation Center to concentrate on application of innovative technologies to specific development problems identified by USAID missions, USAID Washington, and the Center’s staff (see Figure S-2 );

essay about science and technology amid the changing world

FIGURE S-2 Strengthening the organizational structure for S&T in USAID.

Strengthening the economic analysis capability of USAID to help ensure that the many dimensions of technological change occurring in almost every developing country are adequately considered when designing and implementing agency projects; and

Revitalizing the program evaluation capability of USAID using rigorous methodologies to gauge program effectiveness.

Recommendation 3. USAID should encourage other U.S. government departments and agencies with S&T-related activities in developing countries to orient their programs to the extent possible to supporting the development priorities of the host countries, and USAID should provide leadership in improving interagency coordination of activities relevant to development. USAID’s long history of working in developing countries provides the agency with unique field perspectives, but it is not as strong as other departments and agencies in many technological areas. Its capabilities should be effectively integrated with the well-developed S&T capabilities of other U.S. government organizations. To that end, USAID should:

Assume leadership, in cooperation with the Department of State and the Office of Science and Technology Policy, in the establishment in Washington of an effective interagency committee to coordinate the overlapping S&T interests of U.S. departments and agencies in developing countries;

Emphasize within the joint State-USAID planning process and in the field the payoff from broad interagency coordination of S&T-related activities;

Clarify the division of responsibilities for supporting research relevant to international development supported by USAID and other U.S. government departments and agencies. Table S-2 presents a suggested role for USAID in the health sector;

Work with other government organizations that are involved in preventing and responding to natural disasters with an expanded emphasis on the capacity of developing countries to improve early warning systems, upgrade the resilience of physical structures to impacts, increase availability of emergency social support resources, and develop hazard mitigation and emergency response strategies that can be integrated with long-term development programs;

Work closely with the Departments of State and Defense and other national and international organizations involved in reconstruction of war-torn areas, taking advantage of the technical capabilities of these partners while sharing USAID’s field experience in charting the course for recovery;

Develop USAID programs that complement the programs of the Department of State for combating HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria, capitalizing on USAID’s unique field experience to build local capacity for delivering health services; and

Encourage the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) to take advantage of USAID’s many years of experience in promoting international development in the countries where the MCC has initiated programs.

USAID has recorded many achievements in using S&T to overcome obstacles to development; for example, support of effective policies for integrating energy networks has brought electrical power to thousands of remote villages in South Africa. In Namibia a USAID partnership with Microsoft and Compaq has

TABLE S-4 Improving Health Outcomes: Role of USAID in the New Global Landscape for Research on Special Problems of Developing Countries

developed effective e-government services and has dramatically enhanced civil participation in parliamentary affairs.

Now, the challenge is for the entire agency to recognize more fully the opportunities to integrate one of America’s strongest assets—S&T—into foreign assistance and to transform this recognition into action programs in the field. The U.S. government faces many new issues in developing countries, from countering terrorism, implementing policies of the World Trade Organization, and addressing global environmental threats, to improving America’s image. U.S. S&T capabilities can help equip USAID to address such issues while also building bridges of mutual understanding that will far transcend traditional concepts of the payoffs to the United States from investments in foreign assistance.

Realization of this vision will not be easy. In the competition for access to limited foreign assistance funds, important constituencies of USAID that embrace basic human needs as the overriding priority have never accepted the approach of technology transfer, stimulation of economic growth, and diffusion of benefits to the general population from innovative nodes in the economy and in society. Nevertheless, with the upsurge in the foreign assistance budget and the globalization of problems, institutions, and solutions, there should be an opportunity for the private voluntary organizations to have funding for their grassroots programs and for USAID to simultaneously undertake serious S&T investments for long-term economic growth.

The entire foreign assistance establishment must be persuaded that S&T are crucial enablers of development and not simply endpoints. Just as governance has become a significant rationale for much of America’s global presence, so S&T must be recognized as an essential platform for transforming aspirations for better lives into durable and practical reality. Only then will the sustainability of a strong S&T component within USAID be assured.

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In October 2003 the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the National Research Council (NRC) entered into a cooperative agreement. The agreement called for the NRC to examine selected aspects of U.S. foreign assistance activities—primarily the programs of the USAID—that have benefited or could benefit from access to strong science, technology, and medical capabilities in the United States or elsewhere. After considering the many aspects of the role of science and technology (S&T) in foreign assistance, the study led to the publication of The Fundamental Role of Science and Technology in International Development . In the book special attention is devoted to partnerships that involve the USAID together with international, regional, U.S. governmental, and private sector organizations in fields such as heath care, agriculture and nutrition, education and job creation, and energy and the environment. This book explores specific programmatic, organizational, and personnel reforms that would increase the effective use of S&T to meet the USAID's goals while supporting larger U.S. foreign policy objectives.

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