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Dr. WIESNER. 28,000 Ph. D. engineers in the U.S.S.R., 9,000 in the United States.
Senator SYMINGTON. Could you take those figures to determine that they have over three times as many highly qualified engineers in this field as we do?
Dr. WIESNER. People with the advanced training; yes. I would not want to make a judgment about the qualifications of the people. This is why we are stressing the importance of graduate training in the Science Foundation, NDEA, and NASA programs.
One very bad shortcoming in the Soviet education is that they do research and teaching in separate institutions. Teaching is done under the Ministry of Higher Education, even graduate teaching, and research is supported and administered primarily by their Soviet Academy of Science, which operates a number of superb research institutes. But this tends to mean that the research in universities is second rate as compared to research in their institutes. Also they do not have that intimate relationship between advanced teaching and research which I think is so valuable in education. I think the Soviet scientists and educators are aware of this problem, but it is a bureaucratic problem they must contend with.
Senator SYMINGTON. I agree. The president of Stanford University once sent me a book. I found by reading that book that the Russian Academy of Sciences was a prosperous, growing, federally subsidized institution 50 years before the Constitution of the United States was signed. Any idea they are backward in these fields has not been verified by fact; has it?
Dr. WIESNER. Ño; they have very many, very great and very distinguished scientists.
My own general feeling is that their scientists, for a variety of reasons, have not been able to be as productive yet as ours. I think they still suffer the consequences of the Stalin period and I think they suffered very badly during World War II. They have had a tremendous task to build up a country of young scientists with experience as a result of those two very distressing periods that they have lived through
I think they have not yet met their full potential. I think Soviet capabilities in science are going to be tremendous in a few more years.
DISCUSSION OF MILITARY NEED FOR SPACE DEVELOPMENT
Senator SYMINGTON. My final question, because I do not want to take too much time. The NASA program was attacked, and a very deep cut was proposed, on the ground that there was no real military need for this type or character of space development. If what you say is true, and we continue to emphasize the importance of conventional capacity, which I certainly would never underrate, and at the same time let them continue to develop this lead that you tell us this morning they have in the more modern approaches to the latest medium of operation, namely, space; then it would only be a question of time before militarily we would be in trouble. Is that not a fair statement?
Dr. WIESNER. I do not recall making any statements about our relative positions in space.
Senator SYMINGTON. I did not say that. You spoke about our relative position, with their having 28,000 Ph. D.'s and I think we had 9,000.
Dr. WIESNER. I think the United States is superior in science and technology in almost all fields today, so I do not want to leave a misimpression.
Senator SYMINGTON. I understand that, but my point is you just told us that they have many more Ph. D.'s in science than we have, over three times more, to be exact
Dr. WIESNER. No; in engineering.
Senator SYMINGTON. And that also they are graduating a great deal more than we. You, yourself, are interested in seeing more money go into things like the National Science Foundation.
With that background, my question is, inasmuch as you defended some of the scientific thinking on the grounds that they did not get the broad-brush scope of the military and political and diplomatic implications, if we do not increase their education, we could find ourselves in military trouble at some future date. Is that a fair extrapolation?
Dr. WIESNER. I will not say we will, but it is conceivable that we could. I think one of the important reasons for undertaking a hard driving space program is that if a military potential develops, we would not be second. I think this is one of the very important motivations for exploring space. No one today can specify a large number of important manned military space activities or even one. But this could well be our lack of vision. It is my own strong feeling that while any other nation in the world is working aggressively in these fields, it would be foolhardy for us not to.
Senator SYMINGTON. Your answer prompts me to ask one more question. Do you feel, to date, there is no military requirement in space!
Dr. WIESNER. No; I would not say that.
Dr. WIESNER. I think we employ space in many ways alreadycommunications, meteorological studies, many others. However, many of us feel that there are no demonstrated uses for man in space and that many of the proposed space missions are things which might be better done by other ways. We are developing capabilities and developing large boosters and manned space capabilities and so on that are in excess of our ability to visualize in use. Uses may emerge, but at the moment, I would say that the capabilities exceed the known military needs.
But I do not believe for a moment that this is an argument for not doing these exploratory developments in a very aggressive way. I would certainly not counsel that the United States remain several years behind the Soviet Union in large booster capability. Even though I say that I cannot now visualize the uses for them. I think this would be taking an undue risk.
Senator SYMINGTON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Senator SMITH. Mr. Chairman, before Dr. Wiesner leaves, I am not sure the last two pages, the two charts attached to his statement, were included in the record.
I would like to move that they be received.
The CHAIRMAN. Without objection, they will be included in the record.
(See pp. 12, 13.)
The CHAIRMAN. May I say to you now that I know Jim Webb's time is tight and he only has a short statement to make.
Senator SYMINGTON. Mr. Chairman, I would ask, if there are questions after studying Dr. Wiesner's testimony, that he be asked to answer these questions.
The CHAIRMAN. I am sure Dr. Wiesner will be glad to answer them. As a matter of fact, in this question of 25 percent, we are trying to find out from Professor Commoner the basis of his objection. We have him on the line. I am going to ask unanimous permission that we include his statement in the record. Dr. Commoner is a professor of biology at Washington University in St. Louis and is Chairman of the Committe on Science in the Promotion of Human Welfare of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
I should also like to place in the record a statement I have requested from Dr. Fred Harvey Harrington, president of the University of Wisconsin and chairman of the Legislative Committee of the Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges.
(The letters from Dr. Commoner and Dr. Harrington follow:) (NASA reply to Dr. Commoner is on p. 134.)
St. Louis, Mo., December 5, 1963. Mr. FRANK C. DI LUZIO, Staff Director, Senate Committee on Aeronautical and Space Sciences, Washington, D.C.
DEAR MR. DI LUZIO: I am sorry that this response to your telephoned request for further information regarding my comments on the effects of the space program on scientific research has been delayed. This past week has been a difficult one for all of us.
I believe that the specific statement that came to your attention originated in an address that I delivered before the annual convention of the National Science Teachers Association in Philadelphia on March 30, 1963. A copy of the address is enclosed. (It has since been published in the October 1963 issue of the Science Teacher.) The statement in question is :
“NASA indicates that it will need some 70,000 scientists and engineers next year (this is about 10 times the annual production of Ph. D.'s in science and engineering) ; by 1970, NASA will require the services of one of every four in the country. Clearly, as it is presently projected, the NASA program will encompass a substantial portion of the Nation's scientific effort. Since NASA-supported work is necessarily directed toward the general area of space investigation, and is for a decade dominated by a single mission, placing a man on the moon, the program is bound to have considerable effect on the overall course of scientific investigation in the United States."
The sources for the factual statements contained in the foregoing paragraph are the following:
1. An article in Aviation Week and Space Technology for November 19, 1962, which summarizes the NASA-University Conference on the Science and Technology of Space Exploration held in Chicago on November 1-2, 1962, quoting Dr. Hugh L. Dryden, states :
“ 'It has been estimated that by 1970 as many as one-fourth of the Nation's trained scientific and engineering manpower will be employed in space activities,' Dryden said."
2. A UPI dispatch from Washington on March 20 states:
“About 73,000 scientists and engineers will be needed to carry out the U.S. civilian space program in the next fiscal year, a congressional subcommittee was told yesterday. A total of 11,300 will be employed by NASA. The 62,000 others will work for NASA contractors, Robert C. Seamans, Jr., Associate Administrator of NASA testified."
3. Data published on page 13 of “Investing in Scientific Progress, 1961–70" (published by the National Science Foundation in 1961) show that approximately 7,000 doctorates in science and engineering would be awarded in 1963.
The foregoing material provided the basis for my remarks in March. I am aware, of course, that the sources are not as detailed as one would wish. However, as I had indicated in our telephone conversation, although I had made considerable effort, at the time, to obtain a detailed analysis of the manpower needs of the space program, such information appeared to be unavailable, at least publicly. In my capacity as chairman of the Committee on Science in the Promotion of Human Welfare of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, I had earlier discussed this problem with several Government officials. While it appeared that an analysis of the manpower problem created by the projected NASA program had in fact been made within the Government, I was told that the information was not available for release. However, nothing that I learned at the time appeared to contradict the general estimates already reported by Dr. Dryden and Mr. Seamans. Moreover, the estimate was confirmed by the projected size of the NASA budget, using as a measure of manpower needs the figure of $40,000 to $45,000 expended per research person annually. This figure has been established as a rather general one by calculations reported by the Department of Commerce and by several industrial scientists.
I am aware, of course, that more recently various Government officials have stated that the 1-in-4 estimate is too high. However, I do not yet know how these new estimates have been made, and would be grateful for any relevant data that you have. The problem is of considerable interest to the AAAS Committee on Science in the Promotion of Human Welfare, in connection with a report which we are now preparing concerning the effects of social demands on the structure of science. For this purpose, we are very much interested in detailed quantitative calculations which show what effect the NASA program will have on the availability of scientific manpower.
What has concerned us most is that the NASA program was apparently planned, and important national commitments made, before its impact on the Nation's total scientific establishment was evaluated (or at least before such an evaluation, if it existed, was made public). I have been personally concerned over what I regard to be an inadequate evaluation of the NASA research program, as it impinges on my own field of research, biology. In addition to the remarks contained in my address of last March, I have commented on this problem in a commencement address delivered in Philadelphia last June. Since you may be interested in the latter, I also enclose a copy of that address.
I trust that this information will be of use to you, and shall be happy to consider the problem with you further. In the meantime, I hope that you can send me material that you have in hand regarding the impact of the NASA program on the Nation's overall scientific program, for this would be of immediate use in the preparation of our committee's report. Sincerely yours,
THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN,
Madison, Wis., December 3, 1963. Hon. CLINTON P. ANDERSON, Chairman, Committee on Aeronautical and Space Sciences, U.S. Senate, Washington, D.C.
DEAR SENATOR ANDERSON: The Association of State Universities and LandGrant Colleges has noted with interest the hearings now being held by the Senate Committee on Aeronautical and Space Sciences concerning the sustaining university program being conducted by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and should very much appreciate being allowed to file the following statement endorsing this program.
We fully believe that the mission of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, as established by the Congress in the NASA enabling legislation, justifies and requires its support of basic research and training in aeronautical and space-related science. We further believe that the NASA sustaining university program is soundly designed to meet this requirement. In addition, however, this program serves to strengthen, rather than weaken, the universities, and is in the best general interest of the Nation.
As you well know, the mission with which the Congress has charged NASA includes “the expansion of human knowledge of phenomena in the atmosphere and space" and the “preservation of the role of the United States as a leader in aeronautical and space-related science and technology.” It seems clear that these goals cannot be reached without the aid of university basic research. In fact, the Congress would be justified in feeling that NASA was not fully discharging the responsibility with which it has been charged unless it assumes a positive role in supporting this necesary research. Further, this mission cannot be accomplished without highly skilled and trained people.
The NASA sustaining university program was designed to carry out these functions. Actually, if NASA had not done so, it is unlikely that the necessary research and training would have been accomplished. Space exploration has, as yet, little commercial application. The cost prohibits any significant conquest of space as a result of individual—or even of organizational-effort, short of the Federal Government. It seems clear, then, that if NASA does not assume vigorous leadership, the mission assigned to it by the Congress will not be discharged. And without at least modest efforts—and the NASA sustaining university program is a modest one, by any standard-neither the necessary manpower for the job nor the foundational basic research needed will be long available. It needs to be added here that one of the most frequently heard criticisms of the NASA program is that it “gobbles up" a large percentage of the available research talent in the physical sciences and engineering. It should be noted, however, that in actual fact NASA is adding to the pool of talent rather than merely draining from it through its program of predoctoral traineeships.
With this program, we admit to a special interest. This interest stems from the fact that, while making it possible for the universities to serve NASA's basic needs for research and training, it also preserves and strengthens the ability of the universities to discharge their fundamental and unique responsibilities for instruction, research, and service. It should be unnecessary to point out that unless this ability is maintained America will have lost one of the basic pillars on which its strength rests.
The traineeship part of the program, for instance, provides help for graduate students through the university. Students apply for fellowships to the university, and not to a Federal agency, and the university, and not the agency, selects those who are to receive the fellowships, just as it does with fellowships and scholarships supported by funds from such sources as State appropriations, voluntary gifts, and corporate grants. Because of this, the university is enabled to maintain control over its own programs, serving in those areas in which it knows it is best qualified to serve, rather than diverting its energies into areas dictated to it by forces from outside the institution. Furthermore, this type of program makes it unnecessary for the institution to engage in an essentially barren public-relation race with its sister institutions for national prestige in order to compete successfully for the type of students it needs in order to maintain the quality of its graduate programs and, consequently, its ability to serve well the State, local, and National interests.
Furthermore, through this program, the student remains responsible to the institution at which he is matriculated. It should be clear that a student who has won a fellowship in a national competition, has himself selected the institution he is to attend (after receiving the fellowship, and not before), and is paid a monthly check by the agency granting the aid is not likely to feel a great deal of responsibility or loyalty to the institution. Perhaps much is gained by putting the transaction on such a businesslike basis, but surely much is lost also when the value structure of a governmental agency is allowed to replace those academic values to which the institution owes allegiance.
Much the same sort of thing can be said for the research portion of the program. Within conditions laid down by the granting instrument, the university itself, usually through an interdisciplinary committee of faculty and administrative officers, directs the program. Again, this permits the university to serve where it can serve best. Further, it permits the university to coordinate this program with others for which it has the responsibility and, through such coordination, to strengthen both by reducing fragmentation of effort. The step-funding mechanism designed by NASA provides a climate that leads to greater stability of effort and reduces that pressure for immediate results that plagues much of our present research effort.