U.S. and Chinese Academies of Sciences Create Forum for Space Science Interchanges

U.S. and Chinese Academies of Sciences Create Forum for Space Science Interchanges

The U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) will hold two meetings in 2014 as part of the first CAS-NAS Forum for New Leaders in Space Science.  The first will be in Beijing from May 8-9 and the second from November 3-4 in the Los Angeles area.

The forum “is designed to provide opportunities for a highly select group of young space scientists from China and the United States to discuss their research activities in an intimate and collegial environment,” according to an announcement on the Space Studies Board (SSB) website.  The SSB is part of the National Research Council, which along with the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering and Institute of Medicine comprise The National Academies.  SSB’s counterpart for the forum is the National Space Science Center (NSSC) of the CAS.

Participants in the two meetings will be selected from applicants who had to meet a number of criteria, including being no more than 40 years old on December 31, 2014.  The application period is closed.  Selections will be made by the end of  February.

Language in the newly enacted FY2014 Consolidated Appropriations Act (colloquially referred to “the omnibus”) continues prohibitions on NASA and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy with regard to discussing or engaging in bilateral space cooperation with China unless certain criteria are met.  Those restrictions do not affect other government or non-government organizations, however.  (NAS is a non-government entity.)

The three-fold purpose of the CAS-NAS forum, according to the SSB’s website, is —

  • to identify and highlight research achievements of the best and brightest young scientists currently working at the frontiers of their scientific disciplines;
  • to build informal bridges between the space science communities in China and the United States; and
  • to enhance the diffusion of insights gained from participation in the Forum to the larger space-science communities in China and the United States.

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