Innovations in science and technology "are the engines" of the economy of the future, said astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson.
"Anything that's going to grow in our economy will derive from innovations in STEM fields," Tyson told CNBC in an interview this week, using the acronym for the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.
Tyson is a big believer in how science and technology have the potential to boost economic growth. In a separate interview earlier this year with CNBC's "On the Money," the scientist predicted the world's first trillionaire would be created in outer space.
"I don't think enough people recognize how fundamental science is to what we call civilization," he said. "If you think science is for cherry-picking what result satisfies your social-cultural-political-religious philosophies, then you are not entering the 21st century in a competitive posture."