Beyond Sputnik

U.S. Science Policy in the Twenty-First Century
Homer A. Neal, Tobin L. Smith, and Jennifer B. McCormick
A timely introduction to all facets of U.S. national science policy


Science and technology are responsible for almost every advance in our modern quality of life. Yet science isn't just about laboratories, telescopes and particle accelerators. Public policy exerts a huge impact on how the scientific community conducts its work. Beyond Sputnik is a comprehensive survey of the field for use as an introductory textbook in courses and a reference guide for legislators, scientists, journalists, and advocates seeking to understand the science policy-making process. Detailed case studies—on topics from cloning and stem cell research to homeland security and science education—offer readers the opportunity to study real instances of policymaking at work. Authors and experts Homer A. Neal, Tobin L. Smith, and Jennifer B. McCormick propose practical ways to implement sound public policy in science and technology and highlight how these policies will guide the results of scientific discovery for years to come.

GO BEYOND SPUTNIK ONLINE—Visit for the latest news, teaching resources, learning guides, and internship opportunities in the 21st-Century field of science policy.

Homer A. Neal is the Samuel A. Goudsmit Distinguished University Professor of Physics, Interim President Emeritus, and Vice President for Research Emeritus at the University of Michigan, and is a former member of the U.S. National Science Board.

Tobin L. Smith is Associate Vice President for Federal Relations at the Association of American Universities. He was formerly Assistant Director of the University of Michigan and MIT Washington, DC, offices.

Jennifer B. McCormick is an Assistant Professor of Biomedical Ethics in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the Mayo College of Medicine in Rochester, Minnesota, and is the Associate Director of the Research Ethics Resource, part of the Mayo Clinic's NIH Clinical Translational Science Award research programs.

Praise / Awards

  • "Homer A. Neal, Tobin L. Smith, and Jennifer B. McCormick have written a landmark work calling for a national effort to restore our nation's power in the fields of science, energy, and education, as we did in the remarkable year following Sputnik. The next president should read Beyond Sputnik and accept this call to action as did President Eisenhower."
    —Ambassador David M. Abshire, President of the Center for the Study of the Presidency, Cofounder and Vice Chairman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and President of the Richard Lounsbery Foundation

  • "Beyond Sputnik is a readable, concise, yet remarkably comprehensive introduction to contemporary science policy.  It is devoid of "wonkishness" yet serves the needs of policymakers and students alike.  Because science and technology policy is of central importance in the twenty-first century this accessible volume is a godsend."
    —Charles M. Vest, President of the National Academy of Engineering and Vice Chair of the National Research Council of the National Academies of Sciences and Engineering

  • "This highly researched book is a treasure trove for anyone concerned with science policy relating to such challenges as providing energy, preserving the environment, assuring healthcare, creating jobs, and more."
    —Norman Augustine, retired Chairman and CEO of Lockheed Martin Corporation and recipient of the 2008 Vannevar Bush Award of the National Science Board

  • "Science policy is a subject of growing importance in the United States, yet there has long been a vacuum among textbooks in the field. Beyond Sputnik fills it splendidly and will be greeted with enthusiasm by students and faculty alike. Even those who have practiced the art for years will learn from it."
    —Albert Teich, Director of Science and Policy Programs at the American Association for the Advancement of Science

  • "At last we have a text that tells the story from where A. Hunter Dupree left off; an excellent core text for courses in science and technology policy, DC policymakers, and anyone who needs to get up to speed in the field . . . The book that we have all been waiting for."
    —Christopher T. Hill, Professor of Public Policy and Technology, George Mason University

  • "Beyond Sputnik is to date the best and most comprehensive text on the critical area of American public policy known as science policy. Our national alternatives for the future in many ways are determined by the process, culture and dynamics of this arcane area of policy. Homer Neal and his co-authors make the area of policy understandable and workable. This is a great text!"
    —Michael M Crow, President, Arizona State University

  • "The problem of constructing policy based on scientific uncertainty is ubiquitous, and poorly understood, and thus including discussion of it in an introductory textbook might encourage further thought on this important problem."
    —Jacob Stegenga, Science and Public Policy, University of California San Diego

  • "Beyond Sputnik: U.S. Science Policy in the 21st Century is an exceptionally successful textbook in design and organization, in the clarity of its writing, and its potential connections with readers and their informed action."
    —Charles R. Green, Review of Policy Research, Macalester College

Look Inside

Copyright © 2008, University of Michigan. All rights reserved. Posted June 2008 and August 2008.

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Classroom Resources

"Course Development: Introducing Students to Science Policy" by Genene Fisher, AMS and NC State University [PPT]

News, Reviews, Interviews

Beyond Sputnik website

Review: Review of Policy Research

Review: Science and Public Policy

Read: Blog Castle Crier | 1/26/2009

"Science and Science Policy in the New Obama Administration," commentary by author Tobin Smith
11/25/2008 | PDF

Product Details

  • 400 pages.
  • 23 figs & 3 tables.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Ebook
  • 2010
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-02745-3

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