Bill Gates has urged the US government to spend more money on developing scientific and technology skills to help the US during the downturn.
At a speech by the Gates & Melinda Foundation at Washington University, Gates said, "The greatest antidote to inequity in American life is a good system of public education. For millions of people it is what makes the pursuit of happiness possible. Scientific research will determine what tools we have to solve our biggest problems - in health, information technology, education, energy, or just about any other area. If we keep investing in science and technology, we will discover the tools we need to build a better future."
Gates said investing in the poor would allow less well off people contribute to the economy. "It could be hard in these times to keep spending money to develop the potential of people who are poor. They don't have much of a voice and, frankly, you can get the economy growing again without tapping their talent. But I want us to have a bigger goal than getting the economy growing again. I want us to expand the number of people who are contributing to the economy and benefiting from it."
He urged the US government to recruit high-quality teachers and use instructional tools and data systems to support students. "The federal government [in the US] could provide incentives to build data systems that will help drive evidence-based reform in high schools and colleges," Gates said.
Since leaving Microsoft earlier this year, Bill gates has worked on his charity, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.