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U.S. Government, Universities Must Partner to Address Shifts in International Competitiveness, Repor

A new report from the Center for American Progress contends that increasing globalization, connectivity, access and acceleration of technology has caused an urgent need for investment in innovation. To resolve this issue, the authors believe that the U.S. government and institutions of higher education must work in partnership “not only to accelerate its investments in research and innovation but also to continually reevaluate and redesign the traditional mechanisms (e.g., funding and public policy).” Five main recommendations are provided to stoke innovation through and around universities by:

  1. Increasing investments in early stage research — specifically targeted investments related to high-risk, large-scale, transformational projects;

  2. Bridging the gap between early stage research and the marketplace — by developing new policies that support technology transfer, programs that increase knowledge flow between academia and industry and partnerships that support translational research and proof-of-concept projects;

  3. Refocusing federal economic development funding — to regional and local ecosystems that develop talent and create links between researchers and the private sector;

  4. Develop new, more comprehensive methodologies — that measures the linkages between investments in innovation and the broader impacts in human capital, new products and jobs to drive better policy decisions and incentives for innovation; and,

  5. Develop radical policy experiments and incentives — that enable universities to be at the forefront of trends in innovation and competitiveness as the future mechanisms of innovation change.

The report provides specific policy prescriptions within each of the five main recommendations including the establishment of an independent Office of Innovation Analysis within the U.S. Treasury Department and the expansion of the National Science Foundation’s Partnerships for Innovation. Read the report…

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