EDITORIAL

U.S.-China S&T at 30

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Science  30 Jan 2009:
Vol. 323, Issue 5914, pp. 561
DOI: 10.1126/science.1170938

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Summary

In 1972, The Shanghai Communique of President Nixon and Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai ended 23 years of isolation between the United States and China. Tucked into a single sentence was a brief reference to cooperation in science and technology (S&T). Visits by scientists and scholars then gradually increased, guided on the U.S. side by the nongovernmental National Academy of Sciences. Six years later, and presaging formal diplomatic relations in 1979, came the breakthrough science diplomacy mission of the President's Science Advisor Frank Press, accompanied by representatives of nearly every technical federal agency. That trip laid the groundwork for the formal Agreement on Cooperation in S&T, signed exactly 30 years ago this week by President Carter and the Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping.