Americans’ View on Innovation and Economic Policies – Survey Research Conducted for TechNet by Zogby Analytics
Americans’ View on Innovation and Economic Policies
Survey Research Conducted for TechNet by Zogby Analytics
General Technology Views
According to a new survey conducted by Zogby Analytics on behalf of TechNet, technology is broadly embraced by the American public and held in high regard for improving productivity at work and improving our ability to communicate with the people we care about most. The overall technology industry has a very positive public perception among Americans compared with other established industries such as energy production, financial services and the health care sector. In addition to being viewed in a favorable light, a strong majority believes the technology industry has a positive effect on the country. (The survey was conducted from March 4-5, 2013 with a margin of error of +/- 3.2%).
- America Going Mobile. Roughly 43% of American households have more than 4 mobile devices. Nearly 6% have more than 8 mobile devices in their homes.
- Tech Improves Our Lives. One third of Americans (33%) feel that technology has “very much” improved productivity at work and a large majority (79%) feel strongly that it improves communications with friends and family. Nearly seven in ten (67%) believe technology has given them more freedom to express personal opinions.
- High Marks for Tech Industry. An overwhelming majority of the public (88%) holds a somewhat to very positive opinion of the technology industry. In contrast, the public holds the most intensely negative views of the oil & gas industry (27%), financial services industry (14%) and healthcare industry (13%). A strong majority (65%) of respondents feel the technology industry has a positive impact on the country.
- What Country Will Deliver Next Great Innovation? Nearly 43% of Americans believe the next major technology or innovation product will come from China while 30% believe it will come from the United States and 5% said India.
Views on Policies to Support Innovation
There is a strong desire among likely voters for the federal government to enact policies that support the technology industry’s ability to compete. In addition to broad agreement on R&D support and tax reform, the public understands the benefit of an open and flexible immigration system for highly skilled workers. American voters are also clear on their desire for more focus on science, technology, education and math (STEM) education.
- Federal Government Role in Innovation. A slim majority of Americans (50.3%) believe the U.S. federal government is not doing enough to ensure that the nation remains the global leader in technology and innovation. In contrast, just 39% believe the federal is doing enough.
- R&D Merits Strong Support. Over three quarters (77%) of respondents support (somewhat or strongly) more federal support for corporate R&D programs.
- Education and Talent Matters. To develop domestic skills, an overwhelming majority (77%) of Americans support increased spending on STEM education while a majority of those polled (56%) strongly support using visa related fees to fund more STEM education. Nearly 6 in 10 Americans (58%) do not believe the federal government spends enough on promoting STEM education (Both 16% report we spend “too much” as well as the right “amount.”)
- Tax Code Hampers Growth. Three in four Americans also support simplification of corporate tax rates (75%). At the same time, a strong majority (62%) agrees that reduced corporate tax rates will lead to more hiring and 70% believe the U.S. tax code should put American companies on an equal footing with their foreign competitors.
- Americans Know Value of High-Skilled Workers. A majority (63%) of Americans believe that the U.S. faces a shortage of high skilled workers and that immigration policy should encourage highly skilled workers to stay in the country (63%).
- Americans Support I-Squared Bill. 56% support the Immigration Innovation Act (I-Squared) which proposes using fees from visas for highly-skilled workers to fund a grant program that promotes science, technology, engineering and math education and worker retraining (Only 17% oppose).
- CODE for Opportunity. Nearly three in four Americans (74%) support the CODE initiative, a program started by Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg that aims to allow every child in school to have the opportunity to learn the use of computer programming code.
TechNet is the national, bipartisan network of CEOs that promotes the growth of technology industries and the economy by building long-term relationships between technology leaders and policymakers and by advocating a targeted policy agenda. TechNet’s members represent more than one million employees in the fields of information technology, biotechnology, e-commerce and finance. TechNet has offices in Washington, D.C., Palo Alto, Sacramento, Seattle, Boston and Austin. Web address: www.technet.org. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter at @technetupdate.