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 February 2005 Global Notebook
Russia and United States to Form Innovation Council for High Technologies

On Nov. 16, 2004, Phillip Bond, U.S. under secretary of commerce for technology, and Sergey Mazurenko, head of the Federal Agency for Science and Innovation in the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, agreed on the terms of reference for the U.S.-Russia Innovation Council on High Technologies. The council’s goals are to promote cooperation between the two countries in innovation, commercialization and high technologies, and to promote interaction between U.S. and Russian government agencies, and the business and scientific communities in order to commercialize the results of scientific and technical activities, including those developed through government funding or sponsorship. The council will facilitate the formation of U.S. and Russian science and technology business partnerships, and stimulate dialogue on best practices in commercial science and technology innovation and entrepreneurship.

Commerce, Big Three U.S. Auto Makers Form New Partnership

Senior executives of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Technology Administration and the U.S. automotive industry have signed a memorandum of agreement establishing a new partnership to facilitate technological research and technology policy analysis focused on improving the manufacturing competitiveness of the U.S. automotive industry. This partnership, the United States Alliance for Technology and Engineering for Automotive Manufacturing, or U.S. A-TEAM, will bring together scientists and engineers from the Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology, as well as DaimlerChrysler, Ford Motor Company and General Motors to conduct pre-competitive research activities with the potential to contribute to the future competitiveness of the U.S. automotive industry. The U.S. A-TEAM will focus its initial technical research efforts in three areas: digital/virtual tools, plant floor controllers, and ergonomics.

NCCLS Changes Name to Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute

Effective Jan. 1, NCCLS officially changed its name, becoming the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute. Glen A. Fine, the new executive vice president for the organization explains, “The name change is not a shift of our core organizational mission to develop and distribute standardized best practices for the healthcare and medical testing community. Instead, it is a better reflection of our organization’s expanded standards-development activities, and global membership base.” Originally known as the National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards, CLSI is a nonprofit organization whose members and volunteers develop standards, guidelines, procedures, and best practices. For information on how to participate, contact CLSI, Wayne, Pa. (phone: 610/688-0100).

Silent Defenders

The International Code Council Foundation has initiated the Silent Defender Award Program. This award recognizes people and organizations that perform an extraordinary act that demonstrates a commitment to the ICC Foundation’s mission of building stronger, safer communities. Nominees should support the mission of the foundation, which is to change the devastating effects of natural disasters and other building tragedies by promoting ideas, methods and technologies that encourage the construction of durable, sustainable buildings and homes. The foundation is looking for individuals and organizations that have made a difference in the lives of people though improving the built environment. Nominees should have high ethical standards and lend themselves to the dignity and credibility of their profession. Nominees may play a role in building safety and fire prevention through a variety of means. They may take an active role in building-related public policy issues, advance safety in the built environment, support the application of building codes throughout the world, or take creative and innovative approaches to encourage stronger, safer communities. Send nominations to Paul Myers, ICC president (Silent Defender Awards Program, International Code Council Foundation, PO Box 11335, Cincinnati, OH 45211; fax: 513/574-2159).

ASME International: 125 Years Old This Month

February 16 marks the 125th anniverary of the founding of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Now known as ASME International, the society was founded in 1880 to promote the art, science, and practice of mechanical engineering. Today, ASME is a 120,000-member professional organization focused on the technical, educational, and research issues of the engineering and technology community. ASME sets internationally recognized industrial and manufacturing codes and standards to enhance public welfare and safety, conducts one of the world’s largest technical publishing operations, holds numerous technical conferences worldwide, and offers hundreds of professional development courses each year.

North American Occupational Safety and Health Week 2005

The annual North American Occupational Safety and Health Week will be held May 1 – 7. The week, dubbed NAOSH 05, is aimed at increasing the focus of employers, employees, and the general public on preventing injury and illness in the workplace. In 2002 a total of 5,524 people died from work injuries. Roadway accidents were the number one cause of on-the-job deaths with a total of 2,381 fatalities recorded. Additionally, hundreds of thousands more people suffer work injuries and illnesses every year. For more information and NAOSH tools click here or contact the American Society of Safety Engineers (phone: 847/699-2929). //

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