Why Policy Implementation Needs a Science of Science Policy


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Science of Science Policy


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Why Policy Implementation Needs a Science of Science Policy by John H. Marburger III:

Why Policy Implementation Needs a Science of Science Policy by John H. Marburger III Subair.K 5/6/2013 1

Presentation plan:

Presentation plan Introduction Science Policy Challenges in the Executive Branch Legislative Impact on S Policy Implementation Toward a Firmer Foundation for Science Policy A New Mandate for Science Policy Studies Conclusion 5/6/2013 2


Introduction Federally funded basic and applied scientific research has an enormous impact on innovation, economic growth , and social well-being, but some has not . Policy decisions are strongly influenced by past practice or data trends that may be out of date or have limited relevance to the current situation. P olicymakers do not have the capacity to predict how best to make and manage investments to exploit the most promising and important opportunities . Federal science investments are driven by a political context, so the insights provided by political scientists are critical. 5/6/2013 3

Science Policy Challenges in the Executive Branch :

Science Policy Challenges in the Executive Branch SoSP movement is a potentially powerful tool for policy implementation Policies are guides to action , strategies for implementation are nearly always embedded in policy proposals, often completely. The actions required to transform a policy idea into a desired result occur in stages . S uccessive expansions of the group of agents and stakeholders whose endorsement is needed to launch the initiative. The management of the program, feedback of information about its success or failure to the policy level, and subsequent policy actions responsive to the feedback. 5/6/2013 4


Continue… These stages comprise the natural cycle of planning, implementation, evaluation, and improvement that applies to all systematic efforts to accomplish defined objectives. The executive branch carries out the business of government through a large number of departments and agencies, many of which today have a research arm and an employee in the role of chief scientist . 19 organizations are designated by an executive order as members of the interagency National Science and Technology Council (NSTC), managed by the OSTP . 25 participate in the interagency National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI ). 13 participate in the Global Change Research Program (GCRP) and the Networking and Information Technology Research and Development (NITRD) program. 5/6/2013 5


Continue… Among the 15 departments and 56 “ Independent Establishments and Government Corporations” listed in the current edition of the U.S. Government Manual, the National Science Foundation (NSF), is only fully devoted to the conduct of science , including research fellowships and science education. Two of the largest science agencies, NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) and NSF, do not report to a cabinet- level administrator and rely on the OSTP to make their case in White House policy- making processes. The challenge of managing multiple science enterprises in the executive branch motivated the development of bureaucratic machinery in the 1950s to avoid duplication, fill gaps, and preserve capabilities serving multiple agencies. 5/6/2013 6


Continue… The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has the greatest authority and the OSTP works with the OMB to establish priorities and develop programs and budgets for the science and technology portions of all of the agencies. OMB divided into 5 independent divisions, each of which manages a significant portion of the overall science and technology activity. NIH, NSF, DOE, NASA, and DOD Budget officials work hard to protect their independence , and they attempt to insulate their decisions from other White House policy offices. M ost decisions about science and technology policy are negotiated within agencies and among the various White House policy offices . 5/6/2013 7


Continue… Major policy decisions are made through a deliberative process among White House and cabinet officials, including the OMB that narrows issues and choices for ultimate action by the president. Executive branch machinery is complex but reasonably well defined and understood by the bureaucracy Political appointees involvement adds to the element of randomness always present in agency responsiveness to presidential direction Political appointees also reduce the impedance mismatch between the volatile political leadership and the cultural inertia of the bureaucracy. In the executive branch, d esigning high- level policies will be implemented requires detailed knowledge of the political and bureaucratic cultures of the agencies. 5/6/2013 8

Legislative Impact on Science Policy Implementation :

Legislative Impact on Science Policy Implementation The legislative branch has no executive machinery to resolve the random forces that influence its own operations. It responds to t he president’s budget proposals with two dozen very independent appropriations subcommittees, as well as a large number of authorizing committees and subcommittees. No Orgs to monitors or attempts to enforce policy consistency across the hundreds of bills passed in each Congress. Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the General Accountability Office (GAO ), and the Congressional Research Service (CRS) are informational only…..are influential, through the quality and perceived objectivity of the information and analyses they produce ….. have no authority over the members of Congress. Legislative funding for S&T programs originates 9 of the 12 different appropriations subcommittees in each chamber. 5/6/2013 9


Continue… In 2005, the S&T community that economic competitiveness was threatened by neglect of the nation’s “innovation ecology.” During the final Bush administration years, science budgets reflected the priorities of the appropriations committees, not the executive branch and its scientific advisory panels. The competitiveness campaign resulted in important changes in the pattern of appropriations for science. 5/6/2013 10


Continue… The NIH and competitiveness initiatives were not propelled by similarly dramatic events, but champions for both campaigns developed cases based on “disturbing trends,” including lagging rates of R&D investment compared to other countries, discouragement or lack of preparation of potential young scientists, and short-sighted abandonment of basic research in favor of applied R&D. 5/6/2013 11

Toward a Firmer Foundation for Science Policy :

Toward a Firmer Foundation for Science Policy C ompetitiveness campaign encouraging an early report by the President’s Council of Advisors for Science and Technology in 2002, overseeing the OSTP’s role in crafting the ACI, and giving many supporting speeches. The National Academies (NAS) offer high- quality advice in every relevant technical field , and the products of the National Research Council (NRC ) carry substantial weight with all of the actors in the complex process. The only source of high- level policy analysis ,relatively free of the biases of advocacy and self- interest is the community of social scientists and others who analyze science and technology policy as an academic field of study. 5/6/2013 12

PowerPoint Presentation:

The inadequacy of available science policy tools following the terrorist attacks of September 11 2001 . These actions sparked a strong patriotic response in the science and engineering communities. The NSB’s Task Force on National Workforce Policies for Science and Engineering meeting on the topic “Impact of Security Policies on the Science and Engineering Workforce .” 5/6/2013 13

A New Mandate for Science Policy Studies :

A New Mandate for Science Policy Studies By the time of Blue Sky II, NSF held workshops and issued a prospectus announcing the formation of a new program in the social science of science and innovation policy ( SciSIP ). Influence of IT on almost every aspect of daily life, from entertainment to global trade, technical issues will be an important dimension of nearly all future economies , S&T Policy got significance. Studies of government science investment strategies increased demand for economic effectiveness creates a dynamic in which new approaches to science policy studies. 5/6/2013 14


Continue… In the face of rapid global change, old correlations don’t have predictive value . The technical workforce is highly mobile, and IT has not only dramatically altered the working conditions for technical labor but has also transformed and even eradicated the functions of entire categories of technical personnel. Rapidly advancing technologies that created new conditions also bring new tools that are particularly empowering for the social sciences. New tools and opportunities can be an invigorating stimulus for all of the social sciences, including the social science of science policy. 5/6/2013 15


Continue… If the SoSP succeeds in establishing itself as a w ell-defined field and becomes a recognized academic subject, then it is likely to produce 3 resources that can substantially improve science policy implementation. high- quality data resources and interpretive frameworks. a corps of professionals trained in science policy methods and issues a network of high- quality communication and discussion that can encompass all science policy stakeholders. Subfields of SPS that focus on issues such as energy, climate change, and public health already exist and provide these resources in increasing measure 5/6/2013 16


Conclusion The inevitable absence of policy discipline in U.S. federal government decision making creates an imperative for some system of public education that fosters rational policy outcomes. The existence of an academic field of science of science policy is a necessary precondition for such a system. Policies can be formed and carried through rationally only when a sufficient number of men and women follow them in a deep, thoughtful , and open way. 5/6/2013 17

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It responds to t he president’s budget proposals with two dozen very independent appropriations subcommittees, as well as a large number of authorizing committees and subcommittees. 5/6/2013 18

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