Posted April 1, 2010 Washington, DC
Communications and Marketing
On March 24, Danny Breznitz, associate professor at Georgia Tech's Sam Nunn School of International Affairs in the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts, testified before the House Science and Technology Committee's Subcommittee on Technology and Innovation at a hearing on the federal government's role in supporting innovation. Others who testified were: Aneesh Chopra, chief technology officer in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy; Mark Kamlet, provost at Carnegie Mellon University; Rob Atkinson, President of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation; and Paul Holland, general partner at Foundation Capital.
One theme of the hearing was the need for a comprehensive federal strategy to create an environment that is conducive to innovation in the U.S. According to the witnesses, a comprehensive innovation strategy would include components such as a tax policy amenable to attracting capital, a more efficient process to transition research to commercialization and immigration policies that attract the best and the brightest and keep them in the U.S.
Breznitz discussed three roles that the government has to play in innovation policy: public financing of private innovation, public production of innovation (i.e. financing of industrial research at non-profit institutions), and facilitation of professional, inter-institutional networks. He also suggested that federal-state partnerships could encourage states to compete in the development of different, experimental and creative policies for innovation and encourage regional collaboration.