Congressional Research Service Reports - 608 Matching Results

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The Advanced Spectroscopic Portal Program: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report provides an overview of the Advanced Spectroscopic Portal (ASP) program's history and outlines issues for Congress as the program moves forward. The ASP is an improved type of radiation detection device, meant to serve as part of new and existing programs to protect against terrorist nuclear or radiological attack.
Date: March 25, 2009
Creator: Shea, Dana A.; Moteff, John D. & Morgan, Daniel
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal R&D, Drug Discovery, and Pricing: Insights from the NIH-University-Industry Relationship

Description: This report explores the reasons behind government funding of research and development and subsequent efforts to facilitate private sector commercialization of the results of such work, without addressing issues associated with drug costs or pricing. It particularly looks at the manner in which the National Institutes of Health (NIH) supports research to encourage the development of new pharmaceuticals and therapeutics, particularly through cooperative activities among academia, industry, and government.
Date: February 3, 2009
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Legislative Research in Congressional Offices: A Primer

Description: This report discusses the process of conducting legislative research: deciding the scope, collecting the information and evaluating sources. Members of Congress need many kinds of information and analysis to support their legislative, oversight, and representational work, including both quick facts, or information to improve their understanding of a complex set of issues.
Date: January 9, 2001
Creator: Wellborn, Clay H. & Kolakowski, Michael
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the sustainment and modernization of the Coast Guard's polar icebreaker fleet. The Coast Guard's proposed FY2017 budget requests $150 million in acquisition funding for a new polar icebreaker that the Coast Guard wants to begin building in FY2020. The issue for Congress is whether to approve, reject, or modify the Administration's FY2017 acquisition funding request for a new polar icebreaker, and, more generally, whether to approve, reject, or modify the Coast Guard's overall plan for sustaining and modernizing the polar icebreaking fleet.
Date: May 27, 2016
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the sustainment and modernization of the Coast Guard's polar icebreaker fleet. Coast Guard polar icebreakers perform a variety of missions supporting U.S. interests in polar regions. The issue for Congress is whether to approve, reject, or modify the Administration's plans for sustaining and modernizing the polar icebreaking fleet.
Date: January 15, 2016
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the sustainment and modernization of the Coast Guard’s polar icebreaker fleet, which performs a variety of missions supporting U.S. interests in polar regions. The Coast Guard’s proposed FY2015 budget requests $6 million to continue initial acquisition activities for a new polar icebreaker. The issue for Congress is whether to approve, reject, or modify Coast Guard plans for sustaining and modernizing its polar icebreaking fleet. Congressional decisions on this issue could affect Coast Guard funding requirements, the Coast Guard’s ability to perform its polar missions, and the U.S. shipbuilding industrial base.
Date: July 1, 2014
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. National Science Foundation: An Overview

Description: This report discusses the National Science Foundation (NSF), which was created by the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended (P.L. 81-507). The NSF has the broad mission of supporting science and engineering in general and funding basic research across many disciplines. The agency provides support for investigator-initiated, merit-reviewed, competitively selected awards, state-of-the-art tools, and instrumentation and facilities.
Date: November 6, 2006
Creator: Matthews, Christine M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Manhattan Project, the Apollo Program, and Federal Energy Technology R&D Programs: A Comparative Analysis

Description: Some policymakers have concluded that the energy challenges facing the United States are so critical that a concentrated investment in energy research and development (R&D) should be undertaken. The Manhattan project, which produced the atomic bomb, and the Apollo program, which landed American men on the moon, have been cited as examples of the success such R&D investments can yield. Investment in federal energy technology R&D programs of the 1970s, in response to two energy crises, have generally been viewed as less successful than the earlier two efforts. This report compares and contrasts the goals of, and the investments in, the three initiatives, which may provide useful insights for Congress as it assesses and debates the nation's energy policy.
Date: June 30, 2009
Creator: Stine, Deborah D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Other Transaction (OT) Authority

Description: An "other transaction" (OT) is a special vehicle used by federal agencies for obtaining or advancing research and development (R&D) or prototypes. Generally, the reason for creating OT authority is that the government needs to obtain leading-edge R&D (and prototypes) from commercial sources, but some companies (and other entities) are unwilling or unable to comply with the government's procurement regulations. Evaluating OTs and the use of OT authority is a challenging undertaking. This report describes the issue of OT authority as it relates to Congressional policymaking and regulatory actions.
Date: November 25, 2008
Creator: Halchin, L. Elaine
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Financing Catastrophic Risk: Summary of the Homeowners' Defense Act of 2009 (S. 505 and H.R. 2555)

Description: This report discusses the drastic increase in demand for homeowners' insurance in Atlantic and Gulf Coast states following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. This report also discusses various measures and efforts underway to enhance insurer capacity, pursue alternative forms of risk transfer, and create a national catastrophe financing facility, the last of which is an issue under considerable debate.
Date: July 1, 2009
Creator: King, Rawle O.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The DHS Directorate of Science and Technology: Key Issues for Congress

Description: The Directorate of Science and Technology is the primary organization for research and development (R&D) in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The directorate is headed by the Under Secretary for Science and Technology. In the past, some Members of Congress and other observers have been highly critical of the directorate's performance. Although management changes have somewhat muted this criticism in recent years, fundamental issues remain, which this report discusses in detail. Congressional policymakers are widely expected to consider reauthorization legislation for DHS during the 111th Congress. Such legislation would likely include provisions that would affect the Science and Technology Directorate.
Date: June 22, 2009
Creator: Shea, Dana A. & Morgan, Daniel
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Science and Technology Policymaking: A Primer

Description: Science and technology policy is concerned with the allocation of resources for and encouragement of scientific and engineering research and development, the use of scientific and technical knowledge to enhance the nations' response to societal challenges, and the education of Americans in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. This report describes the science and engineering community, policymakers' interest in that community and its various endeavors, and the organizations that provide science and technology policy advice to agencies of the federal government and/or Members of Congress.
Date: May 27, 2009
Creator: Stine, Deborah D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Technology Innovation Program

Description: The Technology Innovation Program (TIP) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) was established in 2007 to replace the Advanced Technology Program (ATP). This effort is designed " ... to support, promote, and accelerate innovation in the United States through highrisk, high-reward research in areas of critical national need," according to the authorizing legislation. Grants are provided to small and medium-sized firms for individual projects or joint ventures with other research organizations. The elimination of ATP and the creation of TIP have renewed the debate over the role of the federal government in promoting commercial technology development. This report discusses the opposing sides of this ongoing debate.
Date: June 29, 2009
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force

Description: The increased presence of foreign students in graduate science and engineering programs and in the scientific workforce has been and continues to be of concern to some in the scientific community. Enrollment of U.S. citizens in graduate science and engineering programs has not kept pace with that of foreign students in those programs. Many in the scientific community maintain that in order to compete with countries that are rapidly expanding their scientific and technological capabilities, the country needs to bring to the United States those whose skills will benefit society and will enable us to compete in the new-technology based global economy. This report analyzes this issue in detail and includes discussion of related legislation.
Date: July 23, 2008
Creator: Matthews, Christine M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The National Institutes of Health: An Overview

Description: The National Institutes of Health is the focal point of federal health research. It uses its $17.8 billion budget to support more than 50,000 scientists working at 2,000 institutions across the United States, as well as to conduct biomedical and behavioral research and research training at its own facilities.
Date: September 15, 2000
Creator: Smith, Pamela W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cooperative Research and Development Agreements

Description: A Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) is a mechanism established by P.L. 99-602, the Federal Technology Transfer Act, to allow the transfer of technology, knowledge, and expertise from government laboratories to the private sector for further development and commercialization. The government provides support in the way of overhead for research and development performed in the federal laboratory and is prohibited from providing funding directly to the partner in the collaborative effort. Currently, more than 5,000 CRADAs have been signed. As the 105th Congress determines its approach to science and technology policies, the role of CRADAs continues to be debated within the context of federal support for R&D
Date: November 17, 1998
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Foreign Science and Engineering Presence in U.S. Institutions and the Labor Force

Description: The scientific community has been divided over proposals to impose stricter immigration limits on people with scientific and technical skills. Attempts to settle upon the balance between the needs for a highly skilled scientific and technical workforce, and the need to protect and ensure job opportunities, salaries, and working conditions of U.S. scientific personnel, will continue to be debated. This report addresses these issues and their implications.
Date: January 12, 2007
Creator: Matthews, Christine M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Environmental, Health, and Safety Tradeoffs: A Discussion of Policymaking Opportunities and Constraints

Description: This report discusses the implications of cost-benefit analysis and risk assessment in the context of congressional and administrative decision-making structures. It identifies constraints on flexible decision-making and some implications of trying to overcome them.
Date: February 1, 1999
Creator: Blodgett, John E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Technology Transfer: Use of Federally Funded Research and Development

Description: The federal government spends approximately one-third of its annual research and development budget for intramural R&D to meet mission requirements in over 700 government laboratories (including Federally Funded Research and Development Centers). The technology and expertise generated by this endeavor may have application beyond the immediate goals or intent of federally funded R&D. Congress has established a system to facilitate the transfer of technology to the private sector and to state and local governments. Critics of this policy argue that working with the agencies and laboratories continues to be difficult and time-consuming. Proponents of the current effort assert that while the laboratories are open to interested parties, the industrial community is making little effort to use them.
Date: July 7, 2006
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Technology Transfer: Use of Federally Funded Research and Development

Description: The federal government spends approximately one-third of its annual research and development budget for intramural R&D to meet mission requirements in over 700 government laboratories (including Federally Funded Research and Development Centers). The technology and expertise generated by this endeavor may have application beyond the immediate goals or intent of federally funded R&D. Congress has established a system to facilitate the transfer of technology to the private sector and to state and local governments. Critics of this policy argue that working with the agencies and laboratories continues to be difficult and time-consuming. Proponents of the current effort assert that while the laboratories are open to interested parties, the industrial community is making little effort to use them.
Date: August 3, 2006
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cooperative R&D: Federal Efforts to Promote Industrial Competitiveness

Description: In response to the foreign challenge in the global marketplace, the United States Congress has explored ways to stimulate technological advancement in the private sector. The government has supported various efforts to promote cooperative research and development activities among industry, universities, and the federal R&D establishment. Among the issues before Congress are whether joint ventures contribute to industrial competitiveness and what role, if any, the government has in facilitating such agreements. Collaborative ventures are intended to accommodate the strengths and responsibilities of all sectors involved innovation and technology development. Given the increased popularity of cooperative programs, questions might be raised as to whether they are meeting expectations. These include questions about the emphasis on collaborative ventures in research rather than in technology development; cooperative manufacturing; defense vs. civilian support; and access by foreign companies.
Date: May 30, 2006
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department