Welcome to my personal home page. I’m a professor and director of the Center for Science and Technology Policy at George Mason’s Schar School of Policy and Government. I have two overlapping areas of specialization. One is technology, science, and innovation policy. I’m interested in the sources and implications of discoveries and inventions of all sorts, past and present. The other area is governance, at the regional, national, and global levels. I want to understand the processes by which policy-makers decide what to do. The two areas come together as I seek to comprehend how states, markets, individuals, and social groups interact to produce decisions about important new technological capabilities.
On this site, you’ll find information about my teaching, publications, research interests, and service activities. You can find my full c.v. here and my short bio here. I welcome contacts from scholars, students, and policy practitioners.
I’ll be a senior fellow with the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, focusing on clean energy innovation, during the 2016-2017 academic year. My ITIF paper, “Rescuing the Low-Carbon Energy Transition from Magical Thinking,” and an associated op-ed in Morning Consult, “Clean Energy Innovation: A Way to Crack America’s Frozen Climate Debate,” were published on October 27, 2016, when we also held our first event, on the Mission Innovation plan to double Federal clean energy R&D — archived stream available. Hear my interview on Sea Change Radio, November 8, 2016.
As a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution‘s Metropolitan Policy Program, I have been working on the program’s advanced industries project. We released an advanced industries trend report on August 4, 2016, and Industry Week published my commentary on August 15, 2016.
I have joined the Innovation Policy Forum of the National Academy of Sciences as co-chair. The Forum acts as a focal point for a national and international dialogue on innovation policy.
I am serving on the organizing committee for the Industry Studies Conference, which will be held in Washington, DC in May 2017.
I gave a seminar on “Science and Technology Policy in the 2016 U.S. Elections” at the Manchester Institute of Innovation Research in June 2016.
“Closing the Energy-Demonstration Gap” (with Richard K. Lester) was published in Issues in Science and Technology (Winter 2015). Unlocking Energy Innovation: How America Can Build a Low-Cost, Low-Carbon Energy System (with Richard K. Lester, published by MIT Press) is now out in paperback.
In October 2014, I participated in the second U.S.-China science and technology policy dialogue in Beijing and in the Pujiang Innovation Forum in Shanghai. The main topic of my talks was my reflections on the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (which were published in Science and Public Policy).
In August 2012, I completed a year of service to the nation as assistant director for innovation policy at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. My work for the Administration focused on advanced manufacturing policy, including the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI) and the Additive Manufacturing Pilot (now America Makes), based in Youngstown OH. Bipartisan legislation that permanently authorized NNMI was passed in December 2014.