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Nanotechnology's economic and societal benefits have continued to attract significant research and development (R&D) attention from governments and industries worldwide. Over the past two decades, nanotechnology has seen quasi-exponential growth in the numbers of scientific papers and patent publications produced. New research topics and application areas are continually emerging, and investment from government, industry, and academia ,  has expanded at substantial levels. But what is the impact of public funding on nanotechnology? How important is its role in driving innovation, invention, and knowledge transfer?