February 20, 2018


David Hart, SPPWelcome to my personal home page. I’m a professor and director of the Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation 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.  You can follow me on Twitter @ProfDavidHart.

What’s New:

I was on a panel comparing state and provincial responses to climate change at the Confederation of Tomorrow 2.0 conference hosted by the Mowat Centre of the University of Toronto on December 12, 2017.

I’m a senior fellow with the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF)  focusing on clean energy innovation.  Recent work with ITIF includes:

“ARPA-E:  Versatile Catalyst for U.S. Energy Innovation,” report (with Michael Kearney) and release event at ITIF on November 15, 2017, and associated op-ed in Energy Collective on December 20, 2017.

A Department of Energy Foundation:  An Idea Whose Time Has Come,” (with Stephen Ezell), The Hill, December 19, 2017.

Crossing the Valley of Death:  Designing and Running Successful Clean-Energy Demonstration Projects,” report and release event at ITIF on July 26, 2017.

From NIMBY to PIMBY on Wind Farms,Lincoln (NE) Journal Star, October 25, 2017; “How States and Localities Can Limit the Fallout from Trump’s Withdrawal from Paris,” Brookings Institution’s The Avenue (June 2, 2017); “We Can Cut Carbon Emissions, Trump or No Trump,” Richmond Times Dispatch (May 26, 2017); “It’s Time for America’s Own Paris Agreement” Austin American-Statesman (March 1, 2017).

Bad Blueprint:  Why Trump Should Ignore the Heritage Plan to Gut Federal Investment” (with Stephen Ezell and Robert D. Atkinson, February 27, 2017); “Go Native, Mr. Secretary” The Hill (March 2, 2017), “Alternative Energy Is Now Mainstream” Washington Examiner (April 24, 2017); “The Little Agency that Does:  Why the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) Must Be Funded, Not Eliminated,” Washington Times (June 18, 2017); “Congress Should Come Up with a Real Budget for Clean Energy Innovation,” The Hill (July 28, 2017).

Energy Innovation Policy:  Priorities for the Trump Administration and Congress” (December 13, 2016); release event with Varun Sivaram, Dorothy Robyn, Todd Allen, Jeff Marqusee; Morning Consult op-ed “Focus, Reform, Invest“(December 16, 2016); Europe’s World op-ed “Trade War or Innovation Race” (December 15, 2016); New York Times editorial board endorses priorities; “Energy Dominance Is Un-American,” Morning Consult (July 6, 2017).

Rescuing the Low-Carbon Energy Transition from Magical Thinking” (October 27, 2016); release event on Mission Innovation; Morning Consult op-ed “Clean Energy Innovation:  A Way to Crack America’s Frozen Climate ; Sea Change Radio interview (November 8, 2016); Presentation at Texas Environmental Law Journal seminar (March 24, 2017)

I serve as co-chair of the Innovation Policy Forum of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The Forum acts as a focal point for a national and international dialogue on innovation policy. I hosted a symposium on the role of Manufacturing USA for the Forum on May 23, 2017, which has now been published as a workshop report.

I’m also a senior fellow with the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program, where I have been collaborating on the advanced industries project, including a trend report on August 4, 2016, and commentary in Industry Week on August 15, 2016.  The St. Louis Post-Dispatch published my op-ed on candidate Donald Trump’s manufacturing policy proposals on July 14, 2016.

I am a co-chair of the program committee for the Industry Studies Conference, which was held in Washington, DC in May 2017 and will meet in Seattle in 2018.

“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 (now Manufacturing USA)  and the Additive Manufacturing Pilot (now America Makes), based in Youngstown OH.   Bipartisan legislation that permanently authorized Manufacturing USA was passed in December 2014.