National Science Foundation Director Bement to Speak at UT

KNOXVILLE — National Science Foundation Director Arden L. Bement Jr. will address the evolving global challenges facing U.S. scientists in an address Wednesday at the University of Tennessee.

Arden L. Bement Jr.
Arden L. Bement Jr.
Bement’s talk, “The Globalization of Science and Engineering: Competing and Collaborating,” will take place this Wednesday, Sept. 13 at 3 p.m. in room 307 of the Science and Engineering Research Facility.

NSF is one of the major sources of American research funding. As NSF director, Bement oversees an agency that provides support to 200,000 scientists, educators and students each year with a budget of about $5.5 billion.

Bement will address the challenges faced by the country in maintaining scientific leadership in the face of major growth by countries like India and China, which are making major investments in both scientific talent and infrastructure.

“There are few people as close to this issue as Dr. Bement,” said Lee Riedinger, UT’s interim vice chancellor for research. “He brings a unique perspective to the table on global scientific competition.”

In addition to increased competition for scientific talent, there is increased global pressure on the U.S. to further develop our national ability to convert knowledge into applications.

Bement will point to the need for increased investment in science and engineering research and education and at the same time enhancing the nation’s role as both a scientific leader and trusted international partner.

Before becoming NSF director in 2004, Bement was the head of the Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology. He was previously a distinguished professor and head of the School of Nuclear Engineering at Purdue University.

Bement’s address is part of the UT Department of Nuclear Engineering’s colloquium series. A webcast of his talk will be available at

Jay Mayfield (865-974-9409,