During the American Physical Society meeting in Denver recently I had an opportunity to talk with colleagues about current issues affecting the international scientific community. One trend that concerns all of us is the increase in negative comments and behaviors that are, without basis, directed at Chinese American or Asian American scientists, students, and postdocs.
As I wrote previously, federal agencies – including DOE, NIH, and NSF – have asked U.S. research institutions to apply new protections to specific technologies and knowledge that are most valuable to competing foreign governments and companies. We’re working closely with DOE and the other national labs to help define these new protections and understand how they might be implemented selectively within the national lab system. We’re developing solutions that 1) strike a balance between acknowledging that we can advance science most quickly in the collaborative research environment we are known for and 2) our responsibility to protect some proprietary intellectual assets that result from U.S. funded research.
Here at Berkeley Lab, as I have said many times, we welcome and value people of all demographics, backgrounds, and national origins because we know how important differing perspectives are to unlocking the ideas that make team science possible. I ask that you continue to make all members of our community feel welcome and respected. Berkeley Lab’s success is rooted in the shared sense that every one of us can make valuable contributions to our next great breakthrough.