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The source for actionable policy ideas to spur innovation.

Dual-credit systems are those in which a high school student may take college courses, typically at a local community college, and receive high school and college credit simultaneously. Expansion of these programs can help more high school students take advanced STEM courses. Via the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, Congress should allocate up to $25 million per year for five years to the...
Early College High Schools are schools that enable students to also enroll in community college classes during high school. The U.S. Department of Education should partner with the philanthropic foundations currently supporting such programs to incorporate a STEM track within them, or to launch new Early College High School Programs with a STEM focus – particularly in locations where low-income...
Congress should allocate $200 million a year for ten years to the Department of Education, to be supplemented by states and local school districts and industry, with the goal of quintupling the number of STEM high schools to 500 and enrollment to around 235,000 by 2015. In addition, institutional partnerships are a key to success of STEM high schools. Whether it’s the donation of research...
States should institute a new governance and funding model to support the establishment of more innovative schools, such as STEM schools and schools that focus on project-based learning, along the lines of a proposal brought forward in Minnesota to create a Minnesota’s NewSchools organization. NewSchools would be a 501(c)3 non-profit that can raise and direct public, as well as private, resources...
Policymakers constantly struggle with finding the right balance for regulations that improve citizen welfare while not causing undue burdens on the private sector. Certainly some regulations are useful; however, some may be inefficient or harmful. In our current economic environment, it is critical that government better understand the impact of regulations on economic growth and innovation. As...
The research should be overseen by a multi-modal body within U.S. DOT that combines technology, policy, tax administration, and systems expertise. As recommended by the National Surface Transportation Infrastructure Financing Commission, the first set of studies should be wide-ranging and experimental, testing various self-selected VMT fee processes. Subsequent tests would be more prescriptive to...
By 2014, the top 100 metropolitan areas should have at least 80 percent of freeway and arterial miles enabled by real-time traffic information systems (including incident notification, travel time, and travel speed data), and that information should be available in an interoperable format so that it can be used on any kind of Web, mobile, or in-vehicle application. States should make real-time...
Currently, Congress has only given statutory permission for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) Joint Program Office (JPO) for intelligent transportation systems (ITS) to focus on research related to ITS systems. Congress should expand the JPO’s remit to include deployment as well as research, and also charge the JPO with developing,...
Currently, ITS projects often have to compete with conventional transportation projects for funding, such that ITS projects, which are poised to deliver greater long term benefits, may have to compete with projects that, while they may be immediately pressing, are not positioned to deliver as great long-term benefits, such as road repair or even new road construction. In addition to a lack of...
ITS will not reach critical mass unless the United States begins to fund large-scale research, demonstration, test and evaluation (RDT&E) projects, as opposed to small “one-off” projects that currently, collectively, do not comprise a system. Moreover, rather than funding almost all ITS deployments through individual states, it would be better for the United States to also fund larger-scale...
An increasing number of countries have adopted mercantilist-styled trade and innovation policies. If existing multilateral organizations such as the World Trade Organization and the World Bank are not equal to the task of ending countries’ mercantilist practices, the United States, Commonwealth nations, European nations, and others should form new trade zones of like-minded countries committed to...
Currently, the World Trade Organization publishes lists of countries’ trade barriers that are not allowed by the WTO’s rules. The WTO should expand this practice to publish lists of all new trade barriers, including non-tariff barriers, introduced by WTO member countries whether those barriers are allowed (or are not covered) by its rules or not.
One key to driving innovation through procurement is to support open standards architectures. By adopting technologies that are interoperable with non-federal applications, federal procurement can help drive widespread adoption. Requiring transit agencies to deploy contactless fare payment systems that are interoperable with those of other transit agencies around the country would allow...
One key to driving innovation through procurement is to support open standards architectures. By adopting technologies that are interoperable with non-federal applications, federal procurement can help drive widespread adoption. An open architecture would allow these cards to house electronic wallet applications that would, for example, let employees load a contactless payment application issued...
For example, the Government Services Administration should commit to installing contactless point of sale terminals in all cafeterias and parking garages it directly operates in government agencies and facilities. Installing contactless point of sale terminals in federal facilities would promote the adoption and use of mobile contactless payment technologies while saving money, since contactless...