Global Research and Development Expenditures: Fact Sheet

Global Research and Development Expenditures: Fact Sheet. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. John F. Sargent Jr. June 27, 2018

 Research and development (R&D) plays a central role in advanced economies in areas such as economic growth and job creation, industrial competitiveness, national security, energy, agriculture, transportation, public health and well-being, environmental protection, and expanding the frontiers of human knowledge understanding. Accordingly, companies, governments, universities, nonprofit organizations, and others around the world have made substantial investments in R&D. Since 2000, total global R&D expenditures have grown by 170% in current dollars, from $674 billion to more than $1.8 trillion. 

 [PDF format, 5 pages].

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U.S. Research and Development Funding and Performance: Fact Sheet

U.S. Research and Development Funding and Performance: Fact Sheet.  Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. John F. Sargent Jr. June 29, 2018

 Research and development (R&D) in the United States is funded and performed by a number of sectors—including the federal government, state governments, businesses, academia, and nonprofit organizations—for a variety of purposes. This fact sheet begins by providing a profile of the U.S. R&D enterprise, including historical trends and current funding by sector and by whether the R&D is basic research, applied research, or development. The final section of this fact sheet includes data on R&D performance by sector.

 [PDF format, 5 pages].

Collaborating For 21st Century Solutions

Collaborating For 21st Century Solutions. Urban Institute. Elizabeth Reynoso, Kathryn L.S. Pettit, Christopher Whitaker. June 19, 2018

 Communities should cultivate and draw on their capacity to use data and technology to benefit residents with the fewest resources. From 2014 to 2018, the Civic Tech and Data Collaborative brought together local government officials, civic technologists, and data intermediaries across seven communities to explore how to harness data and technology to benefit low-income residents. Drawing on the local experiences, the three guiding national organizations – Living Cities, Code for America, and the Urban Institute’s National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership – share advice on engaging low-income residents, mobilizing for collective action, resourcing collaboratives, and sustaining the gains achieved.

As part of the initiative, local collaboratives in Boston, St. Louis, and Washington, DC created products that use data and technology in new ways to improve services or programs in their cities.  To access the three case studies, ecosystem mapping guide, and other project resources, visit https://www.neighborhoodindicators.org/ctdc.  [Note: contains copyrighted material].

 [PDF format, 40 pages].

Building a Smart Partnership for the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Building a Smart Partnership for the Fourth Industrial Revolution.  Atlantic Council.  Beau Woods et al.  April 27, 2018

 The emerging technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution offer unprecedented avenues to improve quality of life, advance society, and contribute to global economic growth. Yet along with greater prospects for human advancement and progress, advancements in these technologies have the potential to be dramatically disruptive, threatening existing assumptions around national security, rules for international cooperation, and a thriving global commerce. This report by the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security and the Korea Institute for Advancement of Technology (KIAT) addresses emerging technologies in key areas of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and explores innovative ways by which the United States and the Republic of Korea can cooperate around advancements in artificial intelligence and robotics; biotechnology; and the Internet of Things. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

 [PDF format, 92 pages].

Is Climate Restoration an Appropriate Climate Policy Goal?

Is Climate Restoration an Appropriate Climate Policy Goal? RAND Corporation.  Robert J. Lempert et al. April 6, 2018

 Since the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, society has organized efforts to limit the magnitude of climate change around the concept of stabilization — that is, accepting some climate change but holding it within acceptable bounds. This report offers an initial exploration of the concept of climate restoration — that is, approaches that seek to return atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases to preindustrial levels within one to two generations. Using a simple integrated assessment model, the analysis examines climate restoration through the lens of risk management under conditions of deep uncertainty, exploring the technology, economic, and policy conditions under which it might be possible to achieve various climate restoration goals and the conditions under which society might be better off with (rather than without) a climate restoration goal. This report also explores near-term actions that might help manage the risks of climate restoration. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

 [PDF format, 51 pages].

Is Automation Labor-Displacing? Productivity Growth, Employment, and the Labor Share

Is Automation Labor-Displacing? Productivity Growth, Employment, and the Labor Share. Brookings Institution. David Autor and Anna Salomons. March 8, 2018

 Is automation a labor-displacing force? This possibility is both an age-old concern and at the heart of a new theoretical literature considering how labor immiseration may result from a wave of “brilliant machines,” which is in part motivated by declining labor shares in many developed countries. Comprehensive evidence on this labor-displacing channel is at present limited. Harnessing a model from Acemoglu and Restrepo (2018), the authors first outline the various channels through which automation impacts labor’s share of output. They then turn to empirically estimating the employment and labor share impacts of productivity growth—an omnibus measure of technological change—using data on 28 industries for 18 OECD countries since 1970. Their main findings are that although automation has not been employment-displacing, it has reduced labor’s share in value added. They disentangle the channels through which these impacts come about by considering both the effects occurring within the advancing industry and spillovers onto the industry’s suppliers and customers, and by separately estimating the wage, output, and price responses to automation. Their estimates highlight that the labor share-displacing effects of productivity growth, which were absent in the 1970s, have become more pronounced over time, largely because of a weakening wage response. This finding is consistent with automation having become less labor-augmenting over time. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

 [PDF format, 75 pages].

Evolving Assessments of Human and Natural Contributions to Climate Change

Evolving Assessments of Human and Natural Contributions to Climate Change. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. Jane A. Leggett. February 1, 2018

 This CRS report provides context for the Administration’s Climate Science Special Report (October 2017) by tracing the evolution of scientific understanding and confidence regarding the drivers of recent global climate change.

 [PDF format, 25 pages].