Fall 2023 News & Events
Join us at our upcoming “New Tools” programs to hear from leading-edge thinkers working in science and technology policy. Our goal is to share applied methods while catalyzing discussions and collaborations between science policy researchers and decision makers about new ideas and approaches for improving the social value of science and technology.
Monday, October 30 – Patent Data & Publicly-Funded Research: Applications, Benefits, & Misuse
CSPO’s new faculty member Bhaven Sampat will explore uses and misuses of patent data. While there is broad agreement that new technologies have significant social and economic impact, tracing technologies back to federally funded research is challenging. In this breakfast briefing, Sampat will review these concerns and describe and assess advances in patent bibliometrics that aim to overcome them.
Laura Brewington, Co-Director of the Pacific Research on Island Solutions for Adaptation (Pacific RISA) program, will explore linkages climate change and non-native invasive species as both increasingly impact the Pacific Island region. Brewington will describe a new management network—the Pacific Regional Invasive Species and Climate Change Management Network—and its work as a boundary crossing institution to build ecological and human community resilience.
Friday, December 15 – Responsible Artificial Intelligence: Policy pathways to a positive AI future
Join Andrew Maynard, an ASU Professor of Advanced Technology Transitions for a talk on how to resolve tensions between the potential of artificial intelligence to positively transform society and the challenges of ensuring its responsible development and use. The first professor to fully integrate Large Learning Models into a college class, Maynard will draw on his work in the governance of emerging technologies to present a model for responsible AI innovation and agile governance.
Thanks to support of ASU and success with several competitive grants, CSPO has grown this year. In addition to adding Arthur Daemmrich as the new director in January, we are excited to have the following new team members onboard.
Bhaven Sampat joined the ASU faculty with joint full professor appointments in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society and the School of Public Affairs; he is based at CSPO in Washington, DC. Bhaven was previously a professor at Columbia University’s Department of Health Policy and Management. His research examines the economics and political economy of innovation and innovation policy with a focus on the design of science and technology policies to improve health and other socio-economic outcomes.
Amanda Borth joined CSPO this fall as an Associate Researcher working on several Participatory Technology Assessment projects. She is also a doctoral candidate in the Department of Communication at George Mason University (GMU) and a Research Fellow at the Institute for Carbon Removal Law and Policy at American University. She is especially motivated by the question: how can we create space for open, collaborative decision-making in response to climate change?
Emily Hostetler joined CSPO this fall as Project Manager for Participatory Technology Assessment. Before ASU, Emily spent nearly 10 years at the Museum of Science, Boston, working closely with government, academic, industry, and community partners to develop and implement public engagement projects. Emily received her BA from Ohio Wesleyan University where she studied Biology and Journalism. She lives in Boston, MA and spends most of her time in the city going to concerts, and the rest of her time trying to leave the city to go watch birds.
CSPO projects purposefully cross disciplinary boundaries and seek answers to questions many people are asking, but few seem bothered to fully explore. A few newer initiatives include:
The Expert and Citizen Assessment of Science and Technology (ECAST) network, led by CSPO, Museum of Science and SciStarter, was among the 13 groups selected by DOE this summer to develop community-centered approaches to storing and disposing of spent nuclear fuel through a consent-based siting process. Building upon its signature Participatory Technology Assessment (pTA) methodology and prior collaborations with DOE’s 2016 consent-based siting initiative, the proposed Consortium for Community Engagement Innovation and Learning on Consent-Based Siting in Arizona (CECIL-AZ) will collaborate with a variety of Arizona based partners to innovate, learn, document and disseminate effective strategies for inclusive, diverse, equitable, informed, and just community, stakeholder and public engagement on nuclear waste storage. Central to the engagement process will be three cross-cutting thematic activities focused on (1) Justice and Equity, (2) Research and Evaluation, (3) Partnership and Dissemination. The overarching vision is to create a testbed for engagement innovations and capacity building that can be modeled, replicated, and scaled from the community level, the State level and ultimately, to the national levels for consent-based siting of nuclear waste and related issues.
A CSPO led group that included Museum of Science, University of Calgary Faculty of Law, American Geophysical Union (AGU) and University of Oxford Institute for Science, Innovation and Society (INSIS) was among the 13 awardees selected by the National Science Foundation to receive a planning grant for its future Centers for Research and Innovation in Science, the Environment and Society (CRISES). The planning grant for a Global Center for Participatory Assessment and Governance of Climate Intervention Technology Research will explore the opportunities, resources and organizations needed for creating a global research center for participatory, inclusive, and responsible governance of climate intervention technologies (CIT). The envisioned transdisciplinary center will undertake comparative empirical social science research in the global north and south to explore public views on CIT research and deployment and how this research can be integrated into governance.
Arthur Daemmrich is starting a new project to study technology policy as a profession and discipline in the making. The project will research the emergence of science and technology policy as a field after WWII, explores why it has not subsequently become a more tightly organized discipline, and evaluates what needs to change to increase diversity and inclusion while also clarifying professional pathways and expanding training programs. The research team will analyze the development of science and technology policy as separate but closely connected interdisciplinary fields over the past seventy years, create new data sets on training programs and career trajectories for science and technology policy professionals, map key institutional changes that shaped both fields since the 1950s, and explore tradeoffs associated with making technology policy into a more organized discipline. This project is supported by a research grant from the Alfred P. Sloan foundation, and kicked off in September with a workshop that created a dialogue between historians of technology and policy professionals at DC-based science and regulatory agencies.
Bhaven Sampat is leading a research project on “crisis innovation” drawing on data from the WWII and post-war period as well as analyzing modern crises including the Covid-19 pandemic. This project, a collaboration with Daniel Gross from Duke’s Fuqua School of Business, uses newly digitized OSRD contract data from the National Archives to assess the effects of the wartime research effort on the intensity, direction, and location of postwar US inventive activity, and the influence of wartime medical research spending on postwar US research, patenting, and product development in the life sciences. Though the project began before the Covid-19 pandemic, since that time the project has evolved to also consider the relevance of the wartime model for modern crises (and the limits of wartime metaphors), and the differences between crisis and non-crisis innovation policies. This work is funded through the National Science Foundation’s “Science of Science” program (Award Number 1951470).
Future newsletters will provide updates on these and numerous other S&T policy-oriented projects underway at CSPO.
For more on CSPO’s programs and projects connect with us on LinkedIn.