This Week in Washington IP: Reviewing Small Business R&D Funding Programs, Researching COVID-19 Variants and Building Department of Defense Cyber Capabilities

By IPWatchdog
May 10, 2021

This week in Washington IP news, committees at the House of Representatives will convene hearings on several topics related to technological innovation, including the CLEAN Future Act’s clean energy and sustainability accelerator, recent impacts of the SBIR and STTR small business grant-funding programs for R&D, as well as the Government Accountability Office’s recent report on lagging cybersecurity protocols within the U.S. Department of Defense. Elsewhere, the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation reviews a recently proposed bill that would create a nonprofit foundation to facilitate the goals of the U.S. Department of Energy, and the Center for Strategic & International Studies hosts events on evaluating the FASTER legislative proposal for accelerating innovation through tech transfer and the NSCAI’s recent report on maintaining dominance in AI development over foreign rivals.

Monday, May 10

Center for Strategic & International Studies

Accelerating Innovation Across the Country: Putting “FASTER” in Context

At 1:00 PM on Monday, online video webinar.

Tech transfer initiatives to bridge the commercialization gap for federally-funded basic research have been incredibly successful for America’s innovation economy. One recent legislative proposal to improve tech transfer is the Focused Action Supporting Technology and Economic Response (FASTER) initiative, which would fund an $864 million infrastructure pilot program to accelerate tech transfer at universities, hospitals and federal labs. This event, hosted by CSIS’ Renewing American Innovation Project, will feature a discussion panel including Kelly Sexton, Associate Vice President for Research – Technology Transfer and Innovation Partnerships, University of Michigan; Marc Sedam, Vice Provost for Innovation and New Ventures, Managing Director of UNHInnovation, University of New Hampshire; Chad Womack, Senior Director of STEM Initiatives and HBCU Innovation, Commercialization and Entrepreneurship, United Negro College Fund; and moderated by John J. Hamre, President, CEO and Langone Chair in American Leadership, CSIS.

Brookings Institution

What Exactly Is ‘Responsible AI’ in Principle and in Practice?

At 1:30 PM on Monday, online video webinar.

“Responsible AI” is used to reference various frameworks being implemented by many stakeholder entities within the artificial intelligence sector that are designed to ensure that ethical concerns related to the use of AI technologies are addressed effectively. This event, hosted by Brookings’ Center for Technology Innovation, will explore the definition of “responsible AI” and how different frameworks have been developed between sectors having different concerns about decision-maker bias. The discussion panel at this event will include Julia Stoyanovich, Assistant Professor, NYU Tandon School of Engineering; Natasha Crampton, Chief Responsible AI Officer, Microsoft; Will Hurd, Former Representative (R-TX), U.S. Congress; and moderated by Nicol Turner Lee, Senior Fellow, Governance Studies, and Director, Center for Technology Innovation

The Heritage Foundation 

Space Force: What’s Next?

At 2:00 PM on Monday, online video webinar.

The creation of the U.S. Space Force in 2019 as the newest branch of the nation’s military gave the nation’s military commanders a new avenue for capitalizing on the small satellite propulsion and navigation technologies being pioneered by NASA. However, the Space Force still has much important work to do in developing counterspace operations protocols and managing communications among the Department of Defense’s space-related agencies. This event will feature a discussion panel including the Honorable Jim Bridenstine, Administrator, NASA; Everett Dolman, Ph.D., Professor of Comparative Military Studies, Department of Space Power, U.S. Air Force Command and Staff College; M.V. “Coyote” Smith, Ph.D., Association Professor of Comparative Military Studies, Department of SPace Power, U.S. Air Force Command and Staff College, Former Instructor, U.S. Air Force Space Weapons School, and Colonel (Ret.), U.S. Air Force; and moderated by John Venable, Senior Research Fellow for Defense Policy, The Heritage Foundation.

Center for Strategic & International Studies

Future Strategy Forum: The Future of National Security and Technology

At 4:00 PM on Monday, online video webinar.

The 2021 Future Strategy Forum is a multi-day virtual event hosted in partnership between CSIS Smart Women, Smart Power Initiative, the Henry A. Kissinger Center for Global Affairs at Johns Hopkins SAIS and Bridging the Gap. Monday afternoon will feature a keynote speech by Anne Neuberger, Deputy National Security Advisor for Cyber and Emerging Technology, as well as a panel discussion on emerging technologies and warfighting. Tuesday will feature panel discussions on emerging technologies and statecraft, James Nolan Prize winners as well as closing remarks by Rose Gottemoeller, Research Fellow, Hoover Institution. Wednesday, the final day of the event, will feature a virtual wargame with Dr. Jacquelyn Schneider, Hoover Institution.

Tuesday, May 11

Hudson Institute 

The U.S. Military and Electromagnetic Spectrum Superiority

At 12:00 PM on Monday, online video webinar.

The growth of commercial and public applications for 5G networking technologies has increasingly constrained the amount of electromagnetic spectrum that military agencies under the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) have for their communications technologies. Last October, the DoD released an Electromagnetic Spectrum Superiority Strategy to refocus military objectives on meeting networking needs within constrained multi-domain environments to maintain dominance over foreign rivals like Russia and China. This event will feature a discussion panel including Representative Jim Langevin (D-RI), Chair, Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces, House Armed Services Committee; Representative Don Bacon (R-NE), Member, Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces, House Armed Services Committee; Dave Temper, Director, Electromagnetic Warfare, Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment; Dr. Maren Leed, Executive Director, National Spectrum Consortium; Bryan Clark, Senior Fellow and Director, Center for Defense Concepts and Technology, Hudson Institute; Timothy A. Walton, Fellow, Center for Defense Concepts and Technology, Hudson Institute; and moderated by Dan Patt, Adjunct Fellow, Center for Defense Concepts and Technology, Hudson Institute.

Information Technology & Innovation Foundation

A Foundation for DOE: An Idea Whose Time Has Come

At 1:00 PM on Tuesday, online video webinar.

Non-profit, non-governmental foundations working in association with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) play an important role in facilitating research and development supporting agency goals. The Partnerships for Energy Security and Innovation Act, recently introduced into Congress, would create a similar foundation entity to support the work of the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) by aiding the commercialization of new technologies solving energy issues. The keynote speaker at this event will be Senator Ben Ray Luján (D-NM). Following the keynote address will be a discussion with a panel including Kevin Klock, Vice President of Operations and General Counsel, Foundation for the National Institutes of Health; Dana Lanza, CEO & President, Confluence Philanthropy; Monique Patrick, Chief Operating Officer, CDC Foundation; Phillip Singerman, Senior Advisor, Technology Transfer and Commercialization, Montgomery County (MD) Economic Development Corporation; and moderated by Jetta Wong, President, JLW Advising.

Wednesday, May 12 

House Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight

COVID-19 Variants and Evolving Research Needs

At 10:00 AM on Wednesday, online video webinar.

Although COVID-19 vaccines continue to be administered to the global public, several new variants of SARS-CoV-2 have been identified, requiring governments to continue supporting research and development efforts for effective vaccines and treatments. The witness panel for this hearing will include Dr. Salim Abdool Karim, Director, CAPRISA; Dr. Nathan Grubaugh, Assistant Professor of Epidemiology, Yale University; and Dr. Caitlin Rivers, Senior Scholar, Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security.

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Innovative Lives: Sarah Will and Mike Schultz

At 4:00 PM on Wednesday, online video webinar.

This event, hosted by the USPTO in partnership with Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation, will explore technologies that have improved accessibility in winter sports. Speakers at this event will include Sarah Will, Paralympic Skier and Accessibility Advocate; Mike Schultz, Inventor, Moto Knee and Versa Foot; and Jane Rogers, Sports Curator, National Museum of American History.

Thursday, May 13

House Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change

The CLEAN Future Act: Superfund Proposals to Advance Cleanups, Equity, and Climate Resilience

At 10:30 AM on Thursday, online video webinar.

Among the many decarbonization initiatives that would be enacted through passage of H.R. 1512, the Climate Leadership and Environmental Action for our Nation’s (CLEAN) Future Act, is a clean energy and sustainability accelerator that would utilize a green bank model to finance zero-emissions energy technologies and climate resiliency projects. The witness panel for this hearing has yet to be announced.

House Committee on Small Business

Overview of the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs

At 11:00 AM on Thursday in 2360 Rayburn House Office Building.

Both the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) business start-up grant funding programs play an important role in supporting early stage research and development activities through commercialization of new technologies. This hearing will feature testimony on the impact of the SBIR and STTR programs, as well as current risks to early stage technologies, from a witness panel including Dr. Joyce Tung, Vice President of Research, 23andMe, Inc.; Pat Keady, Founder, CEO and President, Aerosol Devices, Inc.; Rebecca Todd, Innovation Consultant, Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center; and Jere Glover, Executive Director, Small Business Technology Council.

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Copyright and the Visual Arts: Current Issues

At 12:00 PM on Thursday, online video webinar.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on creative communities, many of which have had to drastically alter their programming in order to keep income streams flowing. This event, featuring presentations by lawyers from the U.S. Copyright Office and Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, is designed to teach visual artists the fundamentals of copyright, current copyright issues facing arts organizations, fair use doctrine and moral rights, as well as steps artists can take to protect their intellectual property.

Center for Strategic & International Studies

National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence: America and the New Innovation Race

At 3:00 PM on Thursday, online video webinar.

The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence (NSCAI) was established in 2018 to consider efforts to advance the development of artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to address the national security and defense needs of the United States. This event, hosted by CSIS’ Renewing American Innovation Project, will explore the findings of a report issued by the NSCAI this March recommending several initiatives for maintaining AI dominance in the world. This event will feature a keynote address by Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC), to be followed by a discussion panel including Dr. Eric Schmidt, NSCAI Chair, Co-Founder, Schmidt Futures, and Former Chairman and CEO, Google; Gilman Louie, Commissioner, NSCAI, and Co-Founder, Alsop Louie Partners; and moderated by Andrei Iancu, Former Director, USPTO, and Non-Resident Senior Advisor, Renewing American Innovation Project, CSIS.

Friday, May 14 

House Subcommittee on Cyber, Innovative Technologies, and Information Systems

Operations in Cyberspace and Building Cyber Capabilities Across the Department of Defense

At 11:00 AM on Friday in 2118 Rayburn.

In early March, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a new report on cybersecurity initiatives by the Department of Defense related to the military’s technological weapons systems. Although the GAO found some positive steps toward more regular cyber testing, it did find issues with a lack of language or vague language regarding cybersecurity responsibilities into military contracts. The witness panel for this hearing will include Mieke Eoyang, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Cyber Policy, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy; and General Paul M. Nakasone, U.S. Army, Commander, U.S. Cyber Command, and Director, National Security Agency.

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Meet Top Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Inventors 

At 11:00 AM on Friday, online video webinar.

The National Inventors Hall of Fame includes several inductees who are Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (AANHPI) inventors; many AANHPI inventors are also leading the way on pioneering medical innovations to take on the COVID-19 pandemic. The first panel on National Inventors Hall of Fame inductees will include Margaret Wu, Retired Senior Scientific Advisor, ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Co.; and Ming-Jun Li and Pushkar Tandon, Corporate Fellows, Corning Incorporated. The second panel on inventors fighting COVID-19 will include Alice Min Soo Chun, CEO and Founder, Solight Design and SEEUS95 Inc.; Yiran (Isabella) Yang, Caltech Ph.D. Candidate in Medical Engineering; and Kevin Tyan, Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Kinnos.

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IPWatchdog

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There are currently 1 Comment comments.

  1. Pro Say May 10, 2021 9:18 pm

    “many AANHPI inventors are also leading the way on pioneering medical innovations to take on the COVID-19 pandemic.”

    Anyone told these fine, hard-working folks that Biden just decided that they won’t be able to protect and profit from any such innovations . . . because America is going to give them away for free?