The development of radar, jet propulsion, ballistic missiles and the atomic bomb during the Second World War established and made visible to an unprecedented degree governmentally supported and directed research and development. National survival was now seen to depend on the mobilisation of a country's talents and resources in science and technology for military purposes.
Prior to the Second World War, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics had established its own role in research. It also established the legitimacy of governmental patronage for scientific research far beyond aeronautics. It was during that period that American politicians and the organs of public opinion became convinced and persuaded the electorate to think that science was indispensable for national security and well-being. A very great deal has been accomplished since then, but the credit for a pioneering role in the conduct of research with the financial support of the federal government must be given to the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics.
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Hetherington, N.S. Air power and governmental support for scientific research: The approach to the Second World War. Minerva 29, 420–439 (1991). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01113490
- Financial Support
- Public Opinion
- Federal Government
- Advisory Committee
- National Security