Increasing Prosperity, Resource Stewardship, and National Security: An Energy Policy Strategy for the Next President

Increasing Prosperity, Resource Stewardship, and National Security: An Energy Policy Strategy for the Next President. Center for a New American Security. Elizabeth Rosenberg, David L. Goldwyn, and Robert McNally. October 17, 2016.

On January 20, 2017, a new U.S. president will take the oath of office. He or she will assume responsibility for assuring the safe, reliable, and affordable provision of energy for the country, a critical component of the economic health and security of the nation. This task will involve addressing a number of grave deficiencies in current energy policy and prioritizing several urgent energy initiatives. Laying a strong, early basis for new energy policy will enable the incoming administration to set the country on a path to aligning national energy capabilities and technological developments with economic and security needs, now and in the future. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 32 pages, 1.05 MB].

Infrastructure Issues and Options for the Next President

Infrastructure Issues and Options for the Next President. Brookings Institution. William A. Galston and Robert Puentes. October 13, 2016

U.S. infrastructure facilities are aging, overcrowded, under-maintained, and in desperate need of modernization. The World Economic Forum ranks the United States 12th in the world for overall quality of infrastructure and assigns particularly low marks for the quality of our roads, ports, railroads, air transport infrastructure, and electricity supply. It is abundantly clear that to be economically competitive in today’s world, adequate investment in infrastructure is critical. And yet, U.S. spending on infrastructure has declined over the past five decades. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[HTML format, various paging].

Presidential Elections: Vacancies in Major-Party Candidacies and the Position of President-Elect

Presidential Elections: Vacancies in Major-Party Candidacies and the Position of President-Elect. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. Thomas H. Neale. October 6, 2016.

What would happen in 2016 if a candidate for President or Vice President were to die or leave the ticket any time between the national party conventions and the November 8 election day? What would happen if this occurred during presidential transition, either between election day and the December 19, 2016, meeting of the electoral college; or between December 19 and the inauguration of the President and Vice President on January 20, 2017? Procedures to fill these vacancies differ depending on when they occur.

[PDF format, 12 pages, 670.71 KB].

A Primer on the College Student Journey

A Primer on the College Student Journey. American Academy of Arts & Sciences, Commission on the Future of Undergraduate Education. October 2016.

Higher education continues to be one of the most important avenues of opportunity in American society. But the education landscape is changing rapidly. There are more options for how and when Americans receive some form of higher education. New populations, for whom the traditional four-year degree was once an impossibility, can now pursue undergraduate education in two-year, four-year, for-profit, and online institutions, according to schedules that fit their own lives. And technological advances offer new approaches to student instruction and collaboration. At the same time, rising costs are challenging the affordability of traditional postsecondary degrees.

The American Academy has undertaken a three-year project to examine the state of postsecondary education in America, and to provide ideas for how to ensure that individual Americans receive the education they need to thrive in the twenty-first century. To give the Commission a clear direction, the Academy has begun by compiling A Primer on the College Student Journey, a comprehensive and data-rich portrait of American postsecondary education—incorporating quantitative and qualitative studies that examine every type of postsecondary institution, from early college high schools to private universities. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 60 pages, 6.44 MB].

March-In Rights Under the Bayh-Dole Act

March-In Rights Under the Bayh-Dole Act. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. John R. Thomas. September 23, 2016.

Congress approved the Bayh–Dole Act, P.L. 96–517, in order to address concerns about the commercialization of technology developed with public funds. This 1980 legislation awards title to inventions made with federal government support if the contractor consists of a small business, a university, or other non–profit institution. A subsequent presidential memorandum extended this policy to all federal government contractors. As a result, the contractor may obtain a patent on its invention, providing it an exclusive right in the invention during the patent’s term. The Bayh–Dole Act endeavors to use patent ownership as an incentive for private sector development and commercialization of federally funded research and development (R&D). The federal government retains certain rights in inventions produced with its financial assistance under the Bayh–Dole Act.

[PDF format, 17 pages, 613.2 KB].

Overall Number of U.S. Unauthorized Immigrants Holds Steady Since 2009

Overall Number of U.S. Unauthorized Immigrants Holds Steady Since 2009. Pew Research Center. Jeffrey S. Passel and D’Vera Cohn. September 20, 2016.

The U.S. unauthorized immigrant population,11.1 million in 2014, has stabilized since the end of the Great Recession, as the number from Mexico declined but the total from other regions of the world increased, according to the estimates based on government data. Among world regions, the number of unauthorized immigrants from Asia, Central America and sub-Saharan Africa rose between 2009 and 2014. The number from Mexico has steadily declined since 2007, the first year of the Great Recession, but Mexicans remain more than half (52%) of U.S. unauthorized immigrants. [Note: contains opyrighted material].

[PDF format, 51 pages, 1.85 MB].

Digital Readiness Gaps

Digital Readiness Gaps. Pew Research Center. John B. Horrigan. September 20, 2016.

For many years concerns about “digital divides” centered primarily on whether people had access to digital technologies. Now, those worried about these issues also focus on the degree to which people succeed or struggle when they use technology to try to navigate their environments, solve problems, and make decisions. The report addresss digital readiness. The analysis explores the attitudes and behaviors that underpin people’s preparedness and comfort in using digital tools for learning as we measured it in a survey about people’s activities for personal learning. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 30 pages, 881.81 KB].