Now in its 20th year since being proposed, the NNI is still recognized as vitally important to maintaining the nation’s scientific and economic prosperity and ensuring national security. As such, the initiative’s goals warranted a review. The report upholds the originally stated goals as follows:
- Advance a world-class nanotechnology R&D program;
- Foster the transfer of new technologies into products for commercial and public benefit;
- Develop and sustain educational resources, a skilled workforce, and a dynamic infrastructure and toolset to advance nanotechnology; and
- Support responsible development of nanotechnology.
“Creation of innovative mechanisms to realize the transformational societal benefits that flow from faster commercialization of nanotechnologies while reestablishing scientific leadership through aggressive, strategic investment in basic nanoscience R&D, improved infrastructure, and expanded education and training necessary to fuel future expansions in foundational knowledge and technological revolutions.”
To carry out this vision, the authors established the following three priorities:
- Priority 1 – Establish broad partnerships to improve the efficiency of nanoscience/nanotechnology R&D translation into economic, environmental, and societal benefits.
- Priority 2 – Strategically select and focus on environmental and societal challenges with nanoscience and nanotechnology.
- Priority 3 – Increase the recruitment and training of future scientists and engineers, specifically with the focus on accelerating technology translation, and with robust investments in next-generation infrastructure.