The report by the US Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations follows an eight-month investigation into how the American taxpayer has, in effect, unwittingly funded research that has contributed to China’s global rise over the past 20 years.
The chairman of the subcommittee, Senator Rob Portman, said: “Through talent recruitment programmes, China has strategically and systematically acquired knowledge and intellectual property from researchers and scientists in both the public and private sector.”
During a hearing before the subcommittee, he said he expected the release of the report to trigger “constructive, bipartisan legislation to address the serious problems” identified.
The report, Threats to the US Research Enterprise: China’s talent recruitment plans, says American taxpayers contribute more than US$150 billion each year to scientific research in the United States. Through entities like the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Energy’s National Laboratories, taxpayers fund innovations that contribute to US national security and profoundly “change the way we live”.