The Dupont Summit on Science & Technology Policy Copyright (c) 2010 Policy Studies Organization All rights reserved. Recent documents in The Dupont Summit on Science & Technology Policy en-us Wed, 28 Apr 2023 16:38:30 PDT 3600 Lunch Break Fri, 04 Dec 2023 12:00:00 PST Evidence Based Policy: A Global Challenge to Medicine in an Era of Mistrust Fri, 04 Dec 2023 10:00:00 PST Chair: Arnauld Nicogossian, George Mason University Arnauld Nicogossian Communicating the Knowledge Abstract: Policy decisions should be consistent with knowledge base. Communicating the evidence is one of the most important duty of the academic and practicing professionals. Without  the evidence and candor there cannot be transparency and public trust. Poor communication practices can lead to confusion, helplessness, anger, civil disobedience and political backlash. The example of  vaccination for seasonal and pandemic influenza will be discussed in the context of the bioethics, policy and politics. Naoru Koizumi Use of Technology to Design Better Health Policies Abstract: GIS is becoming increasingly popular in health care research in recent years. Typical GIS-based studies include an analysis such as "hot-spot" analysis that detects clusters of an infectious disease, simulation of a disease spread, or demand & supply analysis that identifies geographical areas with over- / under- utilization of services improving decision making in outcomes. Jessica Heineman-Pieper Politics in Health Sciences & Policy Abstract: The complexity of system dynamics in the health care sector enables greater scope for politics through the collective interplay of unconscious biases, deliberate agendas, and systemic tendencies. In the international context, these dynamics operate at the level of whole world-views and are compounded by power asymmetries that, among other things, have skewed important issues in global public health policy for less powerful countries towards US economic interests rather than the true wellbeing of those countries' citizens. Public trust as well as domestic and global public health can benefit from both recognizing the operation of power and influence in public health science and policy and also mitigating these forces by reinstating core public health commitments. Arnauld Nicogossian A Brief History of Cosmic Expansion and Acceleration Fri, 04 Dec 2023 20:15:00 PST The lectures, which are the centerpiece of all Philosophical Society of Washington meetings, are selected to appeal to those with a general interest in science and do not require a specialized knowledge of the subject. They always contain information that is current, explanations that are understandable and a few controversial issues to be challenged by a critical listener. The series is designed as much as possible to include a wide range of disciplines. Adam Riess Policy in Science and Engineering Graduate Education: Building Boundary Spanning Competence Fri, 04 Dec 2023 14:00:00 PST Chair: Guillermo De Los Reyes, University of Houston Abstract: As part of an IGERT grant entitled Nitrogren Systems: Policy-oriented Research and Education a major effort was made at Washington State University to supplement the science and engineering training being provided to a select group of doctoral students with appropriate (but not overly burdensome) policy process training. The major elements of this training include the following: A dynamic modeling course featuring nitrogen cycling phenomena and the interaction of policy choices with stakeholder reactions by those affected by statutory and regulatory measures taken by federal, state or local government. A policy studio course (single course taken in the second semester of the 2-year IGERT training sequence) in which policy process instruction, selected guest speakers, and week-long visit to Wash. DC for meetings with key actors related to each student's dissertation topic. A summer policy-oriented IGERT-funded internship with a major laboratory, public agency, legislative committee or advocacy group toward the end of coursework accomplishment. Inclusion of a chapter devoted to the public policy dimension of the NSPIRE student's dissertation. Nicholas P. Lovrich Futures of Science and Technology Policy Fri, 04 Dec 2023 15:00:00 PST Chair: Christopher Gore, Ryerson University Alan J. Tomkins Public Engagement for Informing Science and Technology Policy: What do We Know? And What do We Need to Know? Abstract: This manuscript examines the social science literature relevant to public engagements and identifies the challenges that confront the Obama Administration concerning effective and meaningful public input into science and technology policy, with a focus on nanotechnology. Specifically, when considering "which forms, features, and conditions of public engagement are optimal for what purposes, and why?" we find that, to date, social science has offered relatively little to clarify matters. We call for systematic research to be conducted that defines and empirically connects variations in features and types of public engagement activities to specifically defined variations in effective processes and outcomes. This research will result in new models of public participation that can guide policy-makers, practitioners, and the public in determining what kinds of engagement techniques are optimal for what kinds of purposes. Over time, these models will ensure meaningful public participation that meets the promise of contributing thoughtful societal values and perspectives into the science and technology research enterprise and the federal policies related to science and technology. Liz Johnson Science and Technology Innovation as a Complex Adaptative System: Adapting Policy Typologies and Mechanisms. Abstract: The challenges facing science and technology policy design and implementation can be analyzed in various contextual frameworks but need to account for innovation as a complex adaptive system. The central purpose of this paper is to explicate innovation as a complex adaptive system and explore which policy typology and mechanisms can best meet demands for effective science and technology policy in a global economy. Policy typologies have traditionally fallen into incremental and nonincremental categories but need to be re-conceptualized and adapted to the nature of innovation as a complex adaptive system. Past and current trends of incremental policy design have served to satisfy small slices of innovation system's demands. The intriguing challenges of transformative and convergent technology like nanoscience for example, require an innovative, big-picture approach like nonincrementalism. Indivisibility as a core construct of nonincrementalism, allows for coherent, integrated, and coordinated policy formation to match the demands of national goals of global leadership and a resource-efficient approach to scientific development, advancing society. It is critical to consider the form and function of complex adaptive systems in relation to the form and function of technology and invention as interrelating and motivating elements. Whereby resource scarcity does not always allow for full investment in comprehensive nonincrementalism, incremental policy formation can adapt and incorporate mechanisms and structures from nonincrementalism. A better understanding of innovation as a complex adaptive system and incorporation of policy typology and mechanisms that strengthen and reinforce the natural processes of complexity, will facilitate more effective science and technology policy. Michael Simpson From Clouds to Weeds: Science and Technology Policy With a Different Vision. Abstract: The new Administration, in words and in actions, has described a vision for science and technology (S&T) different from that of the previous Administration. The differences can be heard and seen across many venues, not just in those directly related to S&T. This proposed paper will describe the differences in terms of goals, and current efforts and future challenges to meet those goals. The general differences in vision between the two Administrations have been manifested in a set of characteristic goals, seeking: a) development and announcement of a more explicit strategy for future specific tactical actions; b) greater engagement with and participation by other countries; c) augmented, trusted collaboration of efforts; d) enhanced efficiency and effectiveness with increased use of more objective metrics concomitant with decreased use of subjective metrics; and e) improved monitoring and oversight with more rapid refinement ("course corrections") and increased accountability. A number of current efforts in the S&T venue are underway to try to meet the goals, including: a) decisions and choices more deliberately tied to strategy, including having the right workforce and shared understanding of the mission; b) greater international partnerships in the face of greater competition; c) the on-going struggle to augment collaboration among governmental entities; d) development and consistent use of more objective and meaningful metrics; and e) improved reporting and monitoring of status of efforts to increase accountability, as well as pace and degree of success. To be most effective and efficient, all of these efforts toward improvement should be clearly tied from the strategic vision "in the clouds" to the tactical completion "in the weeds", and should be made enduring. The efforts to date are just beginning. Alan J. Tomkins Increasing Climate Science Literacy: Policymakers, Earth Scientists, Educators, and Students Fri, 04 Dec 2023 13:00:00 PST Chair: Paul Rich, Policy Studies Organization Abstract: The American Meteorological Society Policy Program and Education Program have initiatives to inform policy makers, current and future leaders within the Earth science community, undergraduate faculty and students, and pre-college teachers on the latest in climate science. The Policy Program conducts training workshops, forums, and collaborative projects with scientists and policy makers. The Education Program offers college-level courses in climate science for in-service, pre-college teachers and undergraduate students. Key to the mission of the AMS Policy Program is that, in the broadest sense, society has three proactive policy options for reducing the risks associated with global climate disruption (global warming). We could reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and thereby reduce the amount that climate changes (often called mitigation). We could build our capacity to cope with the climate changes that lie ahead (adaptation). We could deliberately manipulate the Earth system in the hope of counteracting the worst impacts of our emissions--critically, without triggering unintended and unpleasant side-effects (geoengineering). Each of these broad categories (mitigation, adaptation, and geoengineering) encompasses a wide range of more specific policy options and none is mutually exclusive--we could use them together and in a wide range of different combinations. Members of the AMS Policy Program work to help society confront global climate disruption through four core approaches. First, the program trains current and future leaders of the Earth science community on the U.S. Federal policy process so that they can more effectively engage with decision-makers as they consider policy options for addressing climate change. The second approach is to inform policy makers about the latest advances in climate science in order to help them ground their policy choices in the best available scientific knowledge. Third, the Policy Program initiates and leads collaborative projects involving scientists and policy makers designed to ensure that policy development explores a wide range of policy options for dealing with climate change. The fourth approach is research and analysis to develop and examine policy options for reducing the risks of climate change. In working to promote scientific literacy among the public, the AMS Education Program has produced a suite of college-level courses that engage in-service teachers and undergraduate students by investigating relevant topics in Earth science. Developed with major support from NASA, DataStreme Earth's Climate System and AMS Climate Studies place participants in a dynamic learning environment where they investigate Earth's climate system using the most current, real-world environmental data. This allows the course to keep a strong focus on the science, while still addressing many of the societal impacts that draw the attention of today's students. In this way, the courses help prepare teachers and students to become responsible, scientifically-literate participants in discussions of climate science and climate change. Elizabeth Mills Internet Investment After the Crisis Fri, 04 Dec 2023 15:00:00 PST Chair: Guillermo Izabal, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Eric T. Weber A Historical Mandate for Expanding Broadband Internet Infrastructure. Abstract: In this paper I argue that the reasoning the American founders gave for establishing a Post Office and postal roads is also justification today for expanding broadband Internet infrastructure and services to people without coverage. I begin with a discussion of the Constitution and a description of my initial analogy. I then reveal the reasoning that a number of founders used to justify the creation of a Post Office. I also show that even the Confederate States of America found it necessary to set an even postage rate for their own postal service. Finally, I reply to critics of the Post Office for its limitations on competition for certain vital public services and structures and for its job of enabling the transmission of materials that some groups find offensive. My focus throughout is primarily on the matter of infrastructure expansion and the enabling of enhanced delivery of access to broadband Internet. I therefore leave the matter of how exactly services should best be delivered via an expanded infrastructure for a future project. Darrene L. Hackler Technology-Based Economic Development in Cities: The Logic of Broadband Investment in the Post-Boom Era. Abstract: The drivers of economic development have altered over time, but in the post-boom era, talent or human capital and innovation that accompany entrepreneurship and research and development have become central tenets of successful regions. Broadband is the infrastructure that can allow these drivers to thrive more efficiently and effectively--from the telecommunications networks to the information technologies (the hardware and software components) that make broadband possible. State and local governments have begun to embrace technology-based economic development approaches that focus on both the intellectual infrastructure as well as the physical, like broadband with its high quality telecommunications systems and affordable high-speed capacity. The paper develops the logic of broadband investment to support local economic development. Governments must understand the current broadband climate, locally and at the state level. Broadband assessments that inventory broadband capacity and availability are essential to understanding the localities' potential obstacles to investing in and the expansion of broadband. Local governments desiring broadband investment should examine assets and points of leverage within their local economies. However, cities must also understand the intergovernmental context as well as regulatory and legislative preemptions cities may face. Post-boom economic development requires investment in such an underlying and critical asset and facilitation of local broadband actions within the intergovernmental structure can improve the probability of successful local broadband investments. Eric T. Weber Climate Change: The Future of A Crisis Fri, 04 Dec 2023 14:00:00 PST Chair: David Merchant, Policy Studies Organization So Young Kim Behind the Consensus: An Anatomy of Global Public Opinion on Climate Change Policies. Abstract: Climate change has undoubtedly become a topmost concern of policymakers around the world. As revealed in numerous polls and media reports, public awareness of the climate change problem seems to be never higher than now. This paper explores the contour of current global public opinion on climate change issues, based on the three ways climate change is framed and portrayed to the global public-climate change as a risk issue, as an environmental issue, and as a development issue. Key findings include: (i) public information and knowledge about climate change as a scientifically/technologically complex issue strongly correlates with the aggregate level of education across countries, (ii) climate change as a large-scale, global environmental problem relatively removed from everyday experience tends to receive greater attention by citizens of advanced countries, and (iii) public support for climate change policies which are closely tied with the prospects of economic growth is significantly higher in more developed countries. These findings suggest that despite the apparently emerging consensus on climate change as the defining challenge facing our age, the global public remains largely divided in the level of public understanding of the issue and public support for climate change policies. J. Scott Armstrong Forecasting Climate Change: Application of Evidence-Based Forecasting Principles. Abstract: We summarize evidence showing that the global warming alarm movement has more of the character of a political movement than that of a scientific controversy. We then make forecasts of the effects and outcomes of this movement using structured analysis of analogous situations, a method that has been shown to produce accurate forecasts for conflict situations. This paper summarizes the current status of this "structured analogies project." We searched the literature and asked diverse experts to identify phenomena that could be characterized as alarms warning of future disasters that were endorsed by scientists, politicians, and the media, and that were accompanied by calls for strong action. The search yielded 71 possible analogies. We examined objective accounts and screened the list; this yielded 26 analogies that met all of the criteria. We coded each of the 26 analogies accounting for the forecasting procedures used, the accuracy of the forecasts, the types of actions called for, and the effects of actions implemented. This paper provides preliminary findings. The analogous alarms were presented as "scientific," but none were based on scientific forecasting procedures. Every alarming forecast proved to be false; the predicted adverse effects either did not occur or were minor. Costly government policies remained in place long after the predicted disasters failed to materialize. In no case could it be said that the actions taken prevented ill effects. The findings appear to be insensitive to which analogies are included. The structured analogies approach suggests that the current global warming alarm is simply the latest example of a common social phenomenon: an alarm based on unscientific forecasts of a calamity. The global warming alarm will fade, but not before much additional harm is done by governments and individuals making inferior decisions on the basis of unscientific forecasts. So Young Kim Building New Energy Economies: Policy and Business Models Fri, 04 Dec 2023 14:00:00 PST Chair: Guillermo Izabal, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Abstract: The Obama Administration in its first year has done extremely important work on energy policy, including placing intelligent, experienced people in key positions; re-creating federal incentives for renewable energy and investing significant amounts in research and development of clean, renewable energy technologies and practices. At the moment, while we do not know what level of Renewable Energy Standard will be implemented, the fact that our government is close to instituting a RES is tremendously meaningful for expanding renewable energy. But does it do enough to create diverse business models of renewable energy projects that will at the same time catalyze renewed economic development across American rural communities. Community ownership of renewable energy development, and in terms of wind we call it Community Wind, is a triple strategy of increasing renewable energy to address climate change, enhancing local and national energy security and stimulating sustainable, robust economic development in rural communities. We know that development of wind energy in the next decade will take place on rural lands. The most important issue the Administration faces is not merely re-fashioning the American manufacturing economy to make turbines and solar panels and the many other elements that make up the supply chain; neither is it transmission, although this is an investment and project of great magnitude. The greatest policy issue the Administration faces is ownership and business models. The American wind energy industry to date has been developed almost entirely by a handful of large, usually multinational, corporate interests that could utilize the federal Production Tax Credit. When the economy tanked, the wind industry tanked as well. President Obama faces an unprecedented opportunity to introduce policies that will transform the business opportunity of energy production so that ordinary community people - farmers, ranchers, rural landowners - can access incentives and programs to assist them to develop a multitude of distributed renewable generation such as wind farms that will not only power the country but power local economies, as well. Lisa Daniels The STEM Workforce as Problem and Promise Fri, 04 Dec 2023 15:00:00 PST Chair: Jong-on Hahm, National Science Foundation Jay Labov STEM Education and the STEM Workforce: Needs for the 21st Century. Robert V. Hamilton Highly-Skilled Migration: The Case of Foreign Science and Engineering Doctorates at U.S. Universities. Sorina Vlaicu and Connie L. McNeely An Exploration of Institutional Hiring Patterns. Lisa Frehill Retention in Engineering: Discipline, Gender, Race/Ethnicity, and Innovation. Jong-on Hahm The U.S. STEM Workforce: The Long View and the Short View. Robert V. Hamilton The Obama Administration's Challenges after the "War on Science": Reforming Staffing and Protecting Scientific Integrity Fri, 04 Dec 2023 13:00:00 PST Chair: Guillermo De Los Reyes, University of Houston Abstract: In this paper, we examine the difficult leadership position President Barack Obama inherited as he took office with respect to science and technology policy making and implementation, particularly following the Bush Administration and years of the so-called "war on science." We contend that the Obama Administration's challenge is not only to take substantive policy action, but also to reform certain administrative practices, particularly in light of the previous administration's practice of the politics of strategic vacancies, a managerial technique that rearranges an agency's ideological inclinations not through the usual forms of active politicization (i.e., by filling the appointee ranks with like-minded ideologues), but instead by "starving" the agency of staff and co-opting its agenda that way. Justin S. Vaughn Solution to the Energy/Climate Change Conundrum Fri, 04 Dec 2023 11:00:00 PST Chair: Christopher Gore, Ryerson University Simon Berkovich Quantum Non-locality and Striving for a New Idea to Discover a Clean and Abundant Source of Energy. Abstract: 1. The problem to maintain the production of energy at the level corresponding to the growing demands of the society is the greatest challenge of our time.. Although the actual shortage of the energy resources is still decades away, its presentiment already stresses the world economy. The awareness of the energy crisis had aroused about half a century ago [1], yet no satisfactory resolution has been found. The reason for this lack of success as analyzed in [2] is deeply rooted. The gist of the problem is that the renewable energy resources are scattered and are of low density, otherwise they would be harmful to the environment. The best way to overcome the impending shortage of energy would be to develop a source of energy that is clean and plentiful, like, e.g., nuclear fusion. Unfortunately, its practical realization encounters serious technical difficulties and is not in the offing. 2. The resolution of the energy crisis desperately wants a discovery of a radically new physical principle for generation of energy. In [3] it is said: "Physicists will be key participants in the basic research needed to solve this grand challenge for humankind. If we succeed the achievement is likely to be better remembered than nuclear weapons". This is a race against time, but the situation is pressing because the approach is unknown. Here we suggest considering a new direction in energy research. This direction is associated with the phenomenon of quantum non-locality. From the standpoint of the conventional paradigm the non-locality of the physical world is a flagrant absurd. In the opinion of A. Einstein, if quantum entanglement "is correct, it signifies the end of physics as a science". Thus, counterarguments of traditional physics against the operational potentials of the phenomenon of quantum entanglement are irrelevant and fallacious - they cannot be valid as something unknown is involved. It is disgraceful to oppose the consequences of what one does not believe to exist in the first place. 3. In our model [4], the origin of quantum entanglement naturally follows from the organization of processing through holographic slices. The traditional physics appears just as an approximation to this holistic picture of the Universe employing interactive holography. Converse reasoning does not work: the monumental phenomenon of quantum non-locality cannot come out as a small correction to the existing worldview. The rationale for the potentials of quantum non-locality for effective generation of energy is given below. Two key points emerge: concentrating energy from distributed sources and extracting energy from the infrastructure of the physical world. 4. To begin with, few people really understand what energy is, let alone how it can be transferred. Consider transmission of energy from a hydroelectric power plant to a consumer hundreds miles away. How does the potential energy of water come to a consumer and transforms into light? Almost all people believe that energy travels through wires. For everyday purposes this superficial point of view is practically acceptable. Yet a scientific breakthrough requires a profound penetration. The energy from an electric power plant goes along the wires, and enters into consumer's light bulb from outside. It is extremely rare to find a thoughtful contemplation of energy as a configurational characteristics such as presented in [5]: the law of the conservation of energy simply means that in an isolated systems "there is something which remains constant"; but, "if the system is not regarded as completely isolated, it is probable that the rigorously exact expression of its internal energy will depend upon the state of the external bodies". In the case of non-local Universe physical systems cannot be considered in isolation from the underlying infrastructure. Thus, recent experiments have revealed the entanglement of particles' pattern of motion [6]. So, how the energy for the remote motion could be transmitted? Apparently, what is transmitted is a control information signal, and the energy is taken locally from the exterior - underlying infrastructure. It is like transferring money by wire. However, there is no reason why the total balance of energy over the whole system is to be preserved. For example, in contrariety the model [4] predicts and exposes a novel physical phenomenon in the cosmological scale: generation of material formations as result of a content-addressable access to the Holographic Universe. The pathways of employing quantum entanglements for generation of energy are copious. The following hypothetical possibilities will be considered and discussed in the talk: (1) nuclear fusion concentration through teleportation; seems more realistic than trapping hot plasma, suitable for a simpler and more effective D+D-reaction; (2) ball lightning creation through entanglement of Super High Frequency radio waves; there are great prospects in exploring this proven phenomenon with no recognized physical origin; (3) "artificial muscle" that can be driven by remote impacts; achieving direct mechanical motion as in biological objects would bypass the complications of the thermodynamic heat transformations. References 1. D. H. Meadows, D. L. Meadows, J. Randers, W. W. Behrens III, "The Limits to Growth"; A Report for the Club of Rome's Project on the Predicament of Mankind; A Potomac Associates Book, New American Library, 1972. 2. P. L. Kapitsa, "Plasma and the controlled thermonuclear reaction", Nobel Prize Lecture, 1978. 3. M. S. Turner, "A century of physics: 1950 to 2050", Physics Today, September 2009, pp. 8-9. 4. S. Y. Berkovich," A comprehensive explanation of quantum mechanics, the keyword is interactive holography", 5. H. Poincaré, "Science and Hypothesis", Dover Publications, Inc., New York, 1952. 6. J. D. Jost, J. P. Home, J. M. Amini, D. Hanneke, R. Ozeri, C. Langer, J. J. Bollinger; D. Leibfried, D. J. Wineland, "Entangled mechanical oscillators", Nature, 459, pp. 683-685, June 4, 2009, Letters to Editor. Sarmistha Rina Majumdar Ushering in an Era of Environmentally Friendly Vehicles. Simon Berkovich Ethics, Policy, and the Obama Administration Fri, 04 Dec 2023 10:00:00 PST Chair: Guillermo De Los Reyes, University of Houston Shane J. Ralston Engineering an Artful and Ethical Solution to the Problem of Global Warming. Abstract: The idea of geoengineering, or the intentional modification of the Earth's atmosphere to reverse the global warming trend, has entered a working theory stage, finding expression in a variety of proposed projects, such as launching reflective materials into the Earth's atmosphere, positioning sunshades over the planet's surface, depositing iron fillings into the oceans to encourage phytoplankton blooms and planting more trees, to name only a few. However, geoengineering might not be as promising a solution to the problem of global warming as its advocates claim. Many scientists, policy-makers and ethicists still dismiss the option as infeasible and too risky given the immense scale at which most geoengineering projects must be instituted and the catastrophic consequences that could, in all likelihood, result. The thesis of this paper is that geoengineering should not be so easily dismissed in policy debates concerning how to mitigate the anthropogenic emissions of global greenhouse gases. My plan is to investigate the desirability of the geoengineering option for addressing global climate change in terms of its capacity to overcome collective action issues, to accommodate ethical norms and to provide an artful, or creative, response to the problem. In the first section, a general picture of the global warming problem and the particulars of some proposed geoengineering projects are laid out. The second section frames the issue as a collective action problem that demands an innovative approach to coordinating individual and group action. In the third section, I reveal six ethical quandaries that emerge in global climate change debates and how they complicate any attempts to ameliorate or resolve the problem. The penultimate section shows how the ideas and activism of two twentieth-century titans in philosophy and ecology--John Dewey and Aldo Leopold, respectively--might be combined to address the problem of global warming through artful inquiry and the adoption of an Earth ethic. Finally, I conclude by arguing that a fundamental shift in perspective must occur if we are to take intentional climate change seriously as a possible, even if a second-best, tool in the environmentalist's tool-kit. Lenneal J. Henderson The Energy/Environment Policy Nexus in the Obama Administration. Abstract and paper objectives: Using the concept of "policy issue networks" first introduced by Hugh Heclo, this paper argues that the Obama Administration seeks to strongly interrelate energy, environmental, economic, urban and foreign policy, particularly as reflected in the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act; Given these policy issue networks, the second objective of the paper is to argue that significant policy innovation derives from successful integration of policy tools across, as well as within, policy domains like energy and environment; A third objective is to introduce within the policy issue network framework as theory of institutional change derived from the work of North, Frontera, Holdren and Rycroft. Innovation requires institutional alteration and innovation and, occasionally, entirely new institutions. The extent to which these institutional innovations achieve their interim and ultimate policy outcomes is significantly related to policy success. The Obama Administration's strategy is to pursue energy and environmental objectives both within and beyond existing institutional complexes at the federal, state, local and even international levels; A fourth objective of the paper is to briefly introduce three case studies demonstrating innovation in the Obama administration: a) investments in household energy efficiency; (b) the more than 10,000 transportation infrastructure projects launched by the Obama stimulus; and c) renewable energy initiatives funded by the Administration to extend use of renewable energy in the electric power grid; and A final objective of the presentation is to synthesize from the concepts and cases a theory of technological innovation in a new presidential administration acting under conditions of extreme economic duress. Shane J. Ralston Internet and Community: What Does the Future Hold? Fri, 04 Dec 2023 11:00:00 PST Chair: Nigel Cameron, F.R.S.A., President and CEO, Center for Policy on Emerging Technologies Erik Fisher
Internet, Community and Assessment Abstract: The development and widespread adoption and use of information technology has given rise to a variety of social transformations at many levels, spanning local communities to global politics.  The broad social, political and ethical dimensions of information and computing technology--as this panel demonstrates--are often presented in terms of the empowerment of individuals, groups, and communities.  For purposes of assessment, determining the correlated effects of information technology on the formation, reconfiguration, and functioning of communities is hardly a straightforward task. This talk reviews the basic functions of technology assessment in relation to the somewhat problematic idea of community in order to pose some broad questions meant to inform the concrete cases presented in this session. Michael R. Nelson The Crowd, the Cloud, and Peer-to-Peer Governance 
Abstract: In the early 1990s, the Clinton Administration came into office just as the commercial Internet and the World Wide Web were becoming available to average Americans.  By 1994, the new Administration had launched the first White House Web site and hundreds of departmental and office Web sites.  "Web-enabling" government offices--and government employees--resulted in more responsive and more cost-efficient government services. We are now at another critical junction in the development of information technology and e-government.  Web 2.0 technologies, Cloud computing, and Software as a Service (SaaS) are all manifestations of a profound change in the way computing is done.  The Internet is no longer just a communications network, it has become a platform for computing and data storage.  The Obama campaign took full advantage of Cloud computing to identify, mobilize, and support millions of volunteers and supporters.  Since January, the Obama Administration has been taking steps to use the Cloud to fundamentally transform the way government services are provided and how policy decisions are made. With the Cloud, government agencies can more easily share data with each other and with citizens.  The Cloud can make more computing power and storage more affordable, more reliable, and more flexible, enabling new, more sophisticated and more customized services, which can meet the varied needs of different groups of citizens.  More importantly, by providing a powerful new platform for collaboration, the Cloud will enable bottom-up, peer-to-peer government.  Local governments and small groups of citizens will be able to tap into the best data and the best advice available on topics ranging from crime to environmental problems to education to health care.  If governments can fully realize the potential of Cloud computing, it could redefine the relationship between citizens, state and local governments, and the Federal government--and empower non-governmental groups to tackle more of the problems that today governments are expected to address. Jules Polonetsky Personal Information: Intelligence That Will Power the Smart Grid And The Achilles' Heel That Could Take It Down Abstract: In October, President Obama announced $3.4 billion in federal grants to help build our nation's Smart Grid.  The President said that the technology that will make up the Smart Grid will make the nation's power transmission system more efficient, encourage renewable energy sources and give consumers better control over their electricity usage and costs. The potential benefits are clear.  Far less obvious to many is that the smart power grid is also a smart information grid, a system that Cisco's CEO has predicted will be bigger than the Internet. But while Internet privacy issues are limited to the Web activities of users, the Smart Grid will involve the collection of information about what goes on at people's homes.  As Commerce Secretary Gary Locke stated this September, "The major benefit provided by the Smart Grid is also its Achilles' heel from a privacy viewpoint." This fall, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) identified several potential data privacy concerns involving Smart Grid technology. They include the threat of identity theft, the possibility of personal behavioral patterns being recorded and real-time surveillance. Clearly, a significant amount of new and intimate consumer data will be available through Smart Grid technology.  There are numerous potential users of the data, including utility companies, smart appliance manufacturers, and third parties that may want the data for further consumer interactions.  Moreover, data that can be collected through smart meters and integrated home networks and appliances has significant value.  For example, Smart Grid systems may incorporate advanced broadband and data flow metering functionality, which can collect information about how much electricity an individual uses, which rooms he or she uses most, when, and how often.  Armed with this data, utility companies will be able to manage load requirements better and create a more efficient electricity distribution system.  In addition, device manufacturers will be able to understand better how their devices are used, allowing them to serve their customers better.  These Smart Grid features, however, raise questions about which entities will have access to individual user data and whether individual devices may be identified or tracked. Potential Smart Grid data users, including utility companies and device manufacturers, must engage in responsible data management practices that build consumer confidence and trust.  Such trust can only be achieved if consumers feel that they are receiving sufficient information about and are in control of how their personal Smart Grid data is used.  Thus, Smart Grid data users must consider carefully how they will protect the integrity, privacy, and security of the Smart Grid data obtained from consumer usage patterns.  In addition, Smart Grid data must be gathered responsibly, securely, and with a measure of transparency and consumer control. Only if consumers have confidence about how their data is used will there be the critical growth in Smart Grid technologies.  An individual consumer must be assured that information about his or her behavioral habits will be used only for the purposes understood and agreed to by that consumer and that it will be protected from improper use.  Without such responsible data management practices, there likely will be consumer resistance to Smart Grid technologies and a loss of consumer trust that could hinder Smart Grid deployment efforts, leading to lower demand for new products and reduced innovation. Erica Newland Refocusing the FTC's Role in Privacy Protection Abstract: The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has historically taken the lead in protecting consumer privacy. The FTC's current notice, choice and security regime has brought progress toward corporate compliance on privacy, but seems to have met the limits of its utility: the FTC needs to finally move beyond this limited framework. In this paper, we present a roadmap for future action by the FTC in the consumer privacy space. Now is the time for the Commission to apply a full set of Fair Information Practice principles (FIPs) in pursuit of privacy protection. These principles, as outlined by the Department of Homeland Security in 2008, include: Transparency Individual Participation Purpose Specification Data Minimization Use Limitation Data Quality and Integrity Security Accountability and Auditing Properly understood, FIPs constitute a comprehensive privacy framework that can guide the FTC in the 21st century. Any discussion of consumer privacy - whether in Congress, at the FTC, or within industry - must be grounded by a full set of FIPs. These principles should be reflected in any future legislation, FTC enforcement or self-regulatory efforts. Jeff LaCagna Professional Associations and the Social Web: What Does the Future Hold?
Abstract: Associations have been an integral part of the American experiment from its inception.  In this century, professional associations have played important roles in the areas of advocacy, education, publishing and standard setting.  The advent of the Social Web, however, is creating unique challenges for professional associations, as well as intriguing opportunities. On the one hand, social platforms are forcibly reinventing the future of associating in ways that disquiet the leaders of many traditional organizations.  On the other hand, the core beliefs that underpin the development and application of social technologies offer professional associations a new way of thinking about what it takes to create "thrivable" communities of meaning in the 21st century. Fundamentally, professional associations still have an important role to play as institutions of civil society, and a serious responsibility to contribute to rebuilding still-fragmented social capital.  But whether these organizations will enjoy a long-term renaissance will certainly depend on their ability to fully embrace social as a way of being in every aspect of their work in the years ahead. Nigel Cameron Global Health Challenges Fri, 04 Dec 2023 11:00:00 PST Chair: David Merchant, Policy Studies Organization Barbara Billauer Pandemic Planning: Back to the Foundation. Abstract: Pandemic preparation, of necessity, requires a certain degree of predicting the future, a sport or alchemy generally not amenable to the scientific method; requiring assumptions often chosen out of bias or ignorance, and at best based on limited knowledge. Preparation for the much anticipated pandemic flu was initiated about three years ago under two such assumptions: that the culprit would be a.) a 'novel' influenza virus and, b.) in the form of Avian Flu-H5N1. Billions of dollars were allocated for vaccines for this anticipated onslaught. And, although yet to materialize, some 'pretenders' to a job of Science Czar still consider that the now prevalent - but unanticipated - swine flu (H1N1) -- will yet "marry" or co-mingle with H5N1, again - without valid scientific plausibility to sustain this belief. In planning for the unrealized Avian Flu attack (as well as in setting policy for bioterrorism in the forms of Anthrax or Smallpox, a return of SARs, an avalanche of extremely drug resistant TB and Staphlococcus, none of which has since materialized) -- current policy is predicated on mathematical modeling. Generally two models are run, one a worst-case scenario, one a moderate attack - but each using statistical methods. These statistical models, in turn use established epidemiological parameters that govern the significance of an epidemic - but employ values for each parameter arbitrarily chosen by the model's creators, (whose financial, academic, or political biases are not disclosed), without rigorous scientific inquiry or review as to their biologic plausibility. The result: we have consistently a. over-planned for and, b. anticipated the wrong prevalent infectious culprit since 2001. Further, retro-justification of prior erroneous assumptions is prevalent. For example, to support the worst-case scenario model, one requirement is that the agent be "novel," such that the population, as a whole, has yet to build up base-line immunity. Initial reports justifying the WHO pandemic alert were predicated on this assessment, i.e. that H1N1/swine flu is a novel agent. Nevertheless, ample evidence exists pointing to the contrary: The existence of genetic markers in animals is but one indicator that the current flu virus has been ongoing for anywhere from 2-10 years. This is confirmed by the variant and aberrant age-demographics of flu-onslaught during 2007 and 2008 seasons, and further corroborated by the fact that ample immunity has resulted after one dose of the newly developed vaccine, as opposed to two, as would be expected for a "novel" agent, i.e. the necessary predicate to support a pandemic declaration. Isaac Asimov once said that one can predict the future based on a perfect understanding of history and psychology. This presentation suggests that, at least for predicting pandemics (whether natural or terrorist induced) and for ensuing planning and policy-setting, a better understand of biologyalong with relevant history would make for a better (i.e., more accurate and useful) future-predictor than the current practice of statistic modeling A historic analysis of six pandemics and severe epidemics during the last century will be used to demonstrate this thesis. Hanan Al Shargi Epigenetic Problems in the Aspect of Fundamental Science and Health Applications. Abstract: Epigenetics is a life science field that has been receiving lots of attention recently. In simple terms, it is a study of organisms control beyond the regular genetic pathways where stable and heritable changes take place independent of DNA directions. Therefore, epigenetics bring in an additional level of control mechanism above and beyond DNA and its genes. Epigenetics concepts are not newly discovered, its mechanisms are known to be essential for coping with the biological complexity of multi-cellular organisms in the normal state. Epigenetics have also been debated for a long time in the context of heredity of acquired characteristics. Epigenetics does not fall into the category of regular biomedical research, and thus poses a number of serious theoretical and practical problems. Without a proper analysis of these problems the conventional genetic engineering developments would be deficient. The epigenetic influences are routinely attributed to molecular mechanisms such as DNA methylation, and chromatin and histone modifications. However, these straightforward mechanisms do not seem sufficiently efficacious. Further analysis suggests that there is an abundant amount of information that is passed on along with genetic information, which can survive outside of genetic material. The source of this epigenetic control remains to be mysterious to say the least. A more advanced model is considered which attributes epigenetic effects to the deeper notions of Universe non-locality and quantum entanglement. We will discuss several possibilities for experimental testing of these ideas. In applications to healthcare practice, recent epigenetic research is uncovering more links between epigenetic modifications and a broad spectrum of health disorders. Abnormal epigenetic modifications are now the most well categorized change accompanying cancer diseases. These developments are exposing an unforeseen complexity in the way diseases develop and progress. These explorations may help put into perspective the actual role, which genes exert over biological form and function. Even more striking, epigenetic modifications are able to remain relatively stable and can transcend through successive generations, which forced some to go back and visit the basic question of the relation between the environment and heredity. It seems that epigenetics will be playing a major role in healthcare strategies, one that we cannot afford to ignore. Barbara Billauer Science During Challenging Times: Theory, Methods, and Case Studies Fri, 04 Dec 2023 13:00:00 PST Chair: Rex Kallembach, Policy Studies Organization Abstract: Science and innovation policies (SIPs) aim at mobilizing knowledge in support of a wide range of societal aspirations and values. However, analytical tools and models for the assessment of SIPs focus predominantly on economic values. Analytical tools for assessing social impacts of science tend to be anchored in microeconomics (e.g. benefit-cost analysis). The assumptions upon which economics of innovation models and attendant tools are based inevitably affect SIP assessments and choices especially for policies of resource allocation and priorities. Nearly all observers, including economists, recognize that some social values are not well accounted for by economic models and measures. The influence of economic models in SIP is in part explained by limited progress in developing ways to conceptualize those science- and innovation-related values not easily expressed in monetary terms. Our research has been designed to further develop a public-values-based model for SIP. At the core of our work are two fundamental questions: What are the public values that justify particular SIPs, and what is the capacity of a given SIP to yield outcomes that support and advance those values? Our research has begun to yield better operationalization of these questions and to apply them to the development of a SIP decision model using a method that we call Public Value Mapping (PVM). Core assumptions of PVM are: (1) that it is possible to identify public values, including ones not well captured by economic constructs; (2) just as one can assess market failure, "public value failure" occurs when neither the market nor the public sector provides goods and services required to achieve designated public values; and (3) innovation can be characterized not only in terms of contributions to economic growth and productivity but also in terms of public values achieved. PVM has many applications in support of science policy making, most notable when used in conjunction with public sector research and development policy analysis and evaluation. PVM goes beyond typical R&D evaluation to analyze and anticipate social impacts. To that end it can be useful to scholars and policy makers alike by expanding means and opportunities for considering broad research impacts. Catherine P. Slade Strategic Science and Democracy Fri, 04 Dec 2023 09:00:00 PST Chair: Paul Rich, Policy Studies Organization Eric J. Novotny International Science and Technology Cooperation: Issues and Strategies for U.S. Policy. Abstract: As the new Administration attempts to reinvigorate U.S. science and to address critical problems in a wide variety of applied fields, global concerns re-emerge to present both policy opportunities and challenges.  Scientific and technological resources can be leveraged effectively by collaborative research and innovation through partnerships among governments, NGOs, academic institutions and enterprises.  International science engagement can also produce many collateral benefits in preventing WMD proliferation, building S&T sector capacity, and supporting nations to transform into knowledge-based economies.    These functional benefits can be implemented with a specific set of proven methods: including cooperative grant making, institution-building, and joint issue-oriented centers of S&T excellence.  Science policies that recognize these advantages can realize tangible advantages through co-funding arrangements with host countries and in mobilizing a larger pool of scientific assets. Robert McCreight Technology Assessment: Democracy's Crucible for the Future of Science. Click above to download paper. Sunny Lee Effective Denuclearization Policy in U.S. Military Strategy: The Case of North Korea. Abstract: Since North Korea possessed nuclear weapons, the Obama administration has pursued more drastic policy to defeat North Korea's nuclear strategy but its process is not fulfilling without producing significant outcomes. If North Korea becomes a formal nuclear country with advanced military techniques which continually supports other potential nuclear countries, the U.S. will lose strategic balance of denuclearization policy in Northeast Asia and it will propel overall shrinkage of the U.S. power. In this paper, North Korea's overall military techniques with nuclear weapons will be precisely reviewed to establish effective denuclearization policy in U.S. military strategy. North Korea's military techniques can be analyzed and evaluated in a few ways: 1) Overall military capacity 2) Nuclear techniques 3) WMD 4) Satellites. North Korea already supported Iran's first satellite launch with advanced military techniques and Syria and Miyanma's nuclear development as well. It has also exchanged missile techniques with nuclear techniques of Pakistan. Not only nuclear techniques but also massive destruction missiles and weapons more seriously impact on international security whom North Korea has been exporting or delivering to terror countries and groups. In advance, North Korea would initiate nuclear symptoms in the international society while stimulating nuclear countries to reinforce nuclear weapons.Therefore, I will focus on U.S. strategy to deal with North Korea's military techniques to find out its strategic tool and apply its methodology on policy making process. If the U.S. succeeds in denuclearizing North Korea, it will result in controlling China and Japan's military expansion as well as reduction policy of nuclear weapons with Russia on the top position for balance of power in Northeast Asia as the strongest military country. Eric J. Novotny Information Technology and Reforming Health Care Delivery in America: The Status and Planned Adoption of Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Fri, 04 Dec 2023 10:00:00 PST Chair: Guillermo Izabal, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Elie Geisler, Marshall Maglothin, Albert Rubenstein, and Giuseppe Turchetti Information Technology and Reforming Health Care Delivery in America: The Status and Planned Adoption of Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Abstract: The challenges and the issues confronting healthcare delivery are universal in nature. In the United States there is currently a major effort to reform the healthcare system, by transforming the ways in which it is funded, and introducing changes in the basic elements of the structure and processes of the system itself. A key initiative in this effort is the use of information technology to streamline the clinical and administrative processes of care, and to make the system more efficient and productive. In this vein, the Obama administration has heralded the accelerated implementation of a national system of electronic medical records (EMR). This paper starts with the analysis of the nature of EMR, its recent history and development and the issues related to its adoption and implementation by healthcare delivery organizations. We compare the adoption of EMR in the U.S. and in several European countries, in which the adoption rates of this technology have been consistently higher than in America. We offer some explanations to the gap in these rates. Next, this paper analyses the promises of benefits from EMR, and the documented benefits from EMR adoption on healthcare delivery, its cost, quality, and availability. We survey the literature and examine the myths and the realities of the contributions of this technology. We proceed to analyze the barriers and facilitators which impinge on the adoption, implementation and adaptation of EMR systems by hospitals, clinicians, medical practices, and the administrative organizations such as insurers, regulators, and firms in the medical instruments and technologies sector. This analysis focuses on a multi-country assessment of the issues involved with EMR adoption and how several countries--including the U.S--- resolved these issues or are still hampered by these challenges. We emphasize the assessment of what has worked, what didn't and why. From this analysis we draw key conclusions and derive lessons which may be relevant to the current effort to reform the American health care system and to utilize EMR as a key ingredient in the attempt to make the system more cost-efficient, more accessible, and more affordable. Based on these lessons, we offer some recommendations on how the adoption and utilization of EMR can be a valuable tool in the new administration's major program to employ information technology in the service of the planned reform of healthcare delivery in America. Albert Rubenstein Science Beyond the Classroom - Roundtable Fri, 05 Dec 2023 16:00:00 PST Chair: Frank Spring F.R.S.A. National Director Royal Society of Arts in the US Alan Friedman F.R.S.A. Former Director and CEO New York Hall of Science Cecily Selby F.R.S.A. New York University Discussant: Paul Rich F.R.S.A. President Policy Studies Organization The Royal Society of Arts Order Out of Disorder in the Science Debate Fri, 05 Dec 2023 15:00:00 PST Chair: Lenneal Henderson, University of Baltimore Barbara Billauer Vaccine Policy and Priority in an Uncertain World: Preventing Pandemic Pandemonium. Joseph Coates The White House, the Congress and the Future: A Too Loose Engagement Barbara Billauer