Science, Technology, and Innovation Policy

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Science, technology, and innovation policy shapes the science and research enterprise, with the goal of directing its activities to serve public needs. RAND experts have explored how to incentivize high-value products in the health care sector, examined government options for promoting and accelerating innovation in housing, and determined how to design "prizes" that spur breakthroughs.

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    Blog

    National Security Commission on AI Requests New Ideas; RAND Responds

    Feb 21, 2020

    The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence put out an open call for submissions about emerging technology's role in the global order. RAND researchers stepped up to the challenge and submitted a wide range of ideas.

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    Essay

    The Right Technology Can Help Refugees Stay Connected

    Mar 11, 2020

    Nearly 71 million people globally are displaced by conflict and persecution. There have been some real advances in technology to help them, but innovations have often been fragmented, without a larger vision. A more strategic approach to technology could better serve their needs.

Explore Science, Technology, and Innovation Policy

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    Commentary

    Now Could Be the Time to Form Policy for Emerging Brain- and Body-Enhancement Technologies

    Policymakers might consider developing appropriate policy frameworks for emerging brain- and body-enhancement technologies to ensure that innovations harnessed for societal, economic, or military benefits do not create new vulnerabilities and that governments adequately defend and manage against potential attacks. The technology is quickly moving forward. Policy may need to play catch-up.

    Jan 12, 2021

  • An illustration of a pacemaker in a person's chest, image by peterschreiber.media/Adobe Stock

    Essay

    Are We Ready for the Internet of Bodies?

    Any device can be hacked, including one inside the human body. We need to think through the privacy and security implications of devices that live with us. But we should also consider the life-changing, life-saving potential of technologies that know us inside and out.

    Jan 8, 2021

  • Research Brief

    Research Brief

    How could technological developments influence the future of cybercrime?

    How could technological developments influence the future of cybercrime? RAND Europe investigated this policy question and identified possible approaches to prevent future technologies from being exploited for criminal purposes.

    Dec 16, 2020

  • Report

    Report

    The Future of Cybercrime in Light of Technology Developments

    RAND Europe conducted a study to: 1. Analyse future technologies and how these could be used to commit or prevent cybercrimes. 2. Propose ways to prevent future technologies from being exploited for criminal purposes.

    Dec 16, 2020

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    Report

    China's Propensity for Innovation in the 21st Century

    China aspires to be a major creator of new technologies and novel value-adding applications for those that already exist. How far will China be able to go toward achieving this goal? And what information is needed to better understand China’s propensity for innovation?

    Dec 3, 2020

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    Commentary

    What Influences Quality Improvement Processes in Health Care?

    Periods of rapid change offer both opportunities and challenges for health care quality improvement. Understanding the building blocks that need to be in place to support improvement processes may help those seeking to embed improvement capabilities and capacity into their organisations, both as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

    Nov 10, 2020

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    Commentary

    Before Redesigning the REF, a New Survey Could Help in Understanding What Is and Isn’t Working

    September's call for more sustainable and agile research funding signaled a renewed push by research-intensive universities in the UK for a funding and assessment system with a lighter touch. Before embarking on a further round of changes, it is important to listen and learn from researchers and managers about what has and has not worked well.

    Oct 6, 2020

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    Project

    Science, Technology and Innovation Research at RAND Europe

    Our researchers help clients understand how to maximize the gains that science, technology and innovation can bring to society and the economy, and how unintended consequences can be mitigated through effective regulation and stakeholder engagement.

    Sep 2, 2020

  • Toyota-backed self driving company Pony.ai begins to provide autonomous electric vehicles to deliver packages from local e-commerce platform Yamibuy during the outbreak of COVID-19 in Irvine, California, April 28, 2020, photo by Mike Blake/Reuters

    Commentary

    How States and Localities Might Approach Operational Design Domains for AVs

    An operational design domain (ODD) is a description of the conditions in which an autonomous vehicle is designed to operate safely. No nationwide ODD policy exists, but because ODD is partly about the characteristics of a specific location, state and local policies could be useful.

    Aug 20, 2020

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    Multimedia

    COVID-19 Briefing Series: Catalyzing Solutions for a Changed World

    Dean Susan Marquis discusses how the Pardee RAND Graduate School quickly pivoted during the COVID-19 pandemic, initiating a series of projects and partnerships to help communities directly respond to the crisis.

    Jun 11, 2020

  • Dissertation

    Dissertation

    The Unforeseen Consequences of Artificial Intelligence (AI) on Society: A Systematic Review of Regulatory Gaps Generated by AI in the U.S.

    Explores how artificial intelligence (AI) influences U.S. public policy, what gaps exist due to AI methods and applications and examines what trends and insights are emerging that can help stakeholders plan for the future.

    Jun 2, 2020

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    Commentary

    How to Harness Technologies in the Fight Against COVID-19

    The pandemic is an unprecedented public health crisis. But the response from science, technology, and innovation communities has been remarkable. It proves that innovation and learning, interdisciplinary methods and collaboration, information and data sharing, and adaptability are more important than ever.

    Jun 2, 2020

  • A ventilator that was modified to be used simultaneously by two patients at the Aga Khan university Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya, April 9, 2020, photo by Baz Ratner/Reuters

    Commentary

    Innovations During COVID-19: Silver Lining or Threat to Patient Safety?

    We still don't know what works best to treat COVID-19. Some of the ideas and innovations are outstanding, but they are, so far, untested. There is an urgent need to evaluate ongoing innovations to learn what works and what doesn't, and what may have costs that are acceptable only under crisis conditions.

    Jun 1, 2020

  • Patrick Roberts on AI Regulation

    Multimedia

    How Should Artificial Intelligence Be Regulated?

    RAND's Patrick Roberts discusses important factors to consider in developing a set of norms for the regulation of artificial intelligence.

    May 20, 2020

  • Facial recognition on a mobile device, image by Irina Shi/Adobe Stock

    Report

    The Benefits and Risks of Face Recognition Technology

    Face recognition technologies (FRTs) offer opportunities to improve identification efforts, but they also raise concerns about privacy and bias. Understanding the trade-offs between the utility and risks of FRTs is crucial for evaluating their adoption and implementation.

    May 14, 2020

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    Commentary

    COVID-19 Highlights the Shortcomings of America's Digital Infrastructure

    Much like America's aging physical infrastructure, America's digital infrastructure needs updating. To fix these urgent problems, local, state, and federal governments could turn to best practices used in the private sector to develop more reliable software.

    May 14, 2020

  • The Care19 mobile app, developed by the State of North Dakota to assist in contact tracing during the global outbreak of the COVID-19, April 24, 2020, photo by Paresh Dave/Reuters

    Commentary

    Should Communities Be Concerned About Digital Technologies to Fight COVID-19?

    Personal smart devices offer an unprecedented opportunity to identify, track, map, and communicate about COVID-19. But apps could pose privacy and security concerns.

    May 13, 2020

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    Commentary

    The Future of Research Outputs

    The changing nature of research outputs has the potential to affect a wide range of organizations and people. A proactive stance could help drive research towards better practices in information storage, sharing and communication, but requires early action and shared goals at a sector level.

    May 12, 2020

  • A laboratory technician working on research for a vaccine against COVID-19 in Bern, Switzerland, April 22, 2020, photo by Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters

    Commentary

    Needed: A Blueprint for a Post-Vaccine World

    When a COVID-19 vaccine is developed, many in rich countries may be able to afford it while the poor and uninsured may not. The time to plan for equitable access, financing, intellectual property rights, and global production is now.

    May 11, 2020

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    Commentary

    Leading with the Proper Use of Scientific Evidence Is Better Than Hiding Behind It

    Evidence only has scientific meaning when it is part of a body of disciplinary knowledge produced by a community of scientists. Leading with scientific evidence, coupled with a wider values framework, may result in better outcomes for all.

    May 5, 2020