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Accessibility and Integrity of Networked Information Collections
The paper begins with a survey of recent developments in networked information resources and tools to identify, navigate, and use such resources. The paper then discusses the changing legal framework that governs use of electronic information as contract law rather than simple sale within the context of copyright law becomes the dominant model for acquiring access to electronic information.
The Chemical Weapons Convention: Effects on the U.S. Chemical Industry
This paper explores the multifaceted challenge of integrating a private, primarily civil industry into the global arms-control regime established by the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC).
Development Assistance, Export Promotion, and Environmental Technology
This background paper provides an overview of developing country environmental problems and markets for environmental technologies and services. It discusses preliminary estimates on the amount and purposes of environmental aid provided by donor countries in 1991. The paper discusses the commercial implications of other countries’ aid for U.S. environmental firms, and the Helsinki package adopted by the OECD in late 1991 to limit commercial advantage from use of tied aid credits.
Industrial Energy Efficiency
This report focuses on energy use in industry, and how government policy can affect it. Trends and patterns in industrial energy use are reviewed, energy-efficient industrial equipment and practices are described, and the factors that influence corporate investment in efficient technologies are explored. Lastly, past Federal efforts to improve industrial energy efficiency are reviewed, and policy options for encouraging the further development and adoption of efficient industrial technologies are discussed.
Preparing for an uncertain climate: summary
This is the final report on climate change. OTA examines how the Nation can best prepare for an uncertain future climate.
Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction: Assessing the Risks
This report describes what nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons can do, analyzes the consequences of their spread for the United States and the world, and summarizes technical aspects of monitoring and controlling their production. This report also explains the array of policy tools that can be used to combat proliferation, identifying tradeoffs and choices that confront policymakers.
U.S. Telecommunications Services in European Markets
This report discusses on telecommunications entering European markets as not just a set of tradable services, but also a basic function of society, essential for effective governance social cohesion, and economic viability’ and equity.
Adult Literacy and New Technologies: Tools for a Lifetime
Adult education needs are difficult to define and difficult to meet; what constitutes adequate literacy changes continually as the demands facing individuals grow more complex. This report is an attempt to identify those capabilities, along with limitations, and outline how new information technologies can be marshaled to meet the goal of a fully literate citizenry.
Alternative Coca Reduction Strategies in the Andean Region
This report identifies opportunities for and constraints to reducing Andean coca production through: 1) improving U.S. alternative development efforts and 2) applying biological control technology (bio-control) to eradicate illegally produced coca.
The Future of Remote Sensing From Space: Civilian Satellite Systems and Applications
This report examines issues related to the development and operation of publicly funded U.S. and foreign civilian remote sensing systems. It also explores the military and intelligence use of data gathered by civilian satellites. In addition, the report examines the outlook for privately funded and operated remote sensing systems.
Advanced Network Technology
This background paper analyzes technologies for tomorrow’s information superhighways. Advanced networks will first be used to support scientists in their work, linking researchers to supercomputers, databases, and scientific instruments. The paper also describes six test networks that are being funded as part of the High Performance Computing and Communications Program.
Biomedical Ethics in U.S. Public Policy
This report reviews the history of four Federal bioethics initiatives: the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research, the Ethics Advisory Board, the President’s Commission for the Study of Ethical Problems in Medicine and Biomedical and Behavioral Research, and the Biomedical Ethics Advisory Committee.
Health Insurance: The Hawaii Experience
This paper provides a detailed look at the State that is often considered a model for what States can do to help provide universal or near universal health insurance coverage for their residents. The paper discusses the history of health insurance provision in Hawaii, emphasizing two relatively recent State insurance laws: 1) the 1974 law that required employers to offer coverage to most of their employees, and 2) the 1989 law that provided a State subsidy for coverage of those individuals who fell in the gap between employment-based coverage and Medicaid coverage. The paper addresses the difficulties faced in evaluating the impact of Hawaii’s various attempts to provide coverage and access, and speaks to whether all or parts of Hawaii’s experience can be transferred to other States or to the Nation as a whole.
An Inconsistent Picture: A Compilation of Analyses of Economic Impacts of Competing Approaches to Health Care Reform by Experts and Stakeholders
This report reviews numerous analyses of the economic impacts of the major approaches to health care reform addressed in this Report-Single Payer, Play-or-Pay, Individual Vouchers or Tax Credits, and Managed Competition and identifies some of the key issues and significant assumptions behind the estimates provided in these analyses.
Who Goes There: Friend or Foe?
This report discusses the problem of fratricide, or “friendly fire” casualties among combat units. The House Armed Services Committee requested that OTA assess the technology and techniques available to reduce this tragic loss of life.
The 1992 World Administrative Radio Conference: Technology and Policy Implications
This paper examined the technologies and issues to be considered at World Administrative Radio Conference (WARC)-92, discusses the international and domestic context for WARC-93 preparations, and analyzed the U.S. process of conference preparation.
Access to Over-the-Road Buses for Persons With Disabilities
This report is part of a process leading to regulations to be issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation. This process has included a review of a draft of this study by the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (ATBCB).
Data Format Standards for Civilian Remote Sensing Satellites
This report discusses the earth data—positional, topographic, climatological, meteorological, man–made features, and changes over time in all of these, which are increasingly important to the military. Data from these systems are bought and extensively used by the military and intelligence communities. The need to integrate data from military-unique systems as well only complicates the situation.
Defense Conversion: Redirecting R&D
Part one of this report analyzes how R&D institutions currently pursuing defense missions could be more responsive and useful to civilian technology development. The Report focuses particularly on the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) three nuclear weapons laboratories, Livermore National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratories. The report examines two sectors in Part Two: new kinds of automobiles that pollute less and could reduce dependence on foreign oil, and high speed surface transportation.
Energy Efficiency Technologies for Central and Eastern Europe
This report focuses on the improvement of energy efficiency. It reviews how energy is used in the former centrally planned economies. Then it analyzes the potential effectiveness of modern technology in reducing energy waste and the factors that constrain improvements. The report also examines government programs assisting energy efficiency technology transfer and opportunities for U.S. businesses. Finally, it discusses congressional policy options to support technology transfer.
Policy Analysis at OTA: A Staff Assessment, May 1993
This document presents the findings of the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) staff assessment of policy analysis that took place in 1992. It consisted of reviewing 18 sample OTA reports and soliciting opinions about OTA's policy analysis from outside observers. This report presents the findings of this assessment, along with options for OTA management and suggestions for OTA project directors.
OTA Proceedings: Technology and Governance in the 1990s, April 1993
This report contains discussion about project domestic and international issues in the 1990s, including arms reduction, the environment, the U.S. economy, health care, and education, with respect to technological issues that the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) works with Congress to develop and understand.
Technology and Governance in the 1990s
This report presents the papers presented at the OTA 20th Anniversary Forum on Technology and Governance in the 1990s. The report discusses five papers presented that day.
Drug Labeling in Developing Countries
This report discusses the pharmaceutical labeling requirements imposed on U.S.-based companies by the laws of the United States and the barriers to U.S. regulation of their labeling in other countries.
Hazards Ahead: Managing Cleanup Worker Health and Safety at the Nuclear Weapons Complex
This paper concludes that, thus far, Department of Energy has (DOE) and its contractors have devoted little attention to cleanup worker health and safety. They have not convinced workers and managers that a “new culture” of accountability in environment, safety, and health is truly ascendent.
Pharmaceutical R&D: Costs, Risks, and Rewards
This report focuses mainly on the economic side of the R&D process. Pharmaceutical R&D is an investment, and the principal characteristic of an investment is that money is spent today in the hopes of generating even more money in the future.
OTA Forum on Technology and Governance in the 19901, January 27, 1993
This document is a program from the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) Forum on Technology and Governance in the 1990s, held on January 27, 1993. The program includes a schedule of events and biographical information on each of the forum speakers.
The 1992 World Administrative Radio Conference: technology and policy implications
This report discusses the role of radio technologies and services in our daily lives. The report elaborates on the outcomes and implications for U.S. radio technology, and the next steps and lessons for the future.
Annual Report to the Congress, Fiscal Year 1992
Annual report of the progress and budget of the Office of Technology Assessment. 20th Anniversary Edition.
Office of Technology Assessment List of Publications, January 1993
A catalog of Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) documents published through 1993.
Researching Health Risks
This report describes the Federal Government’s research activities that are intended to improve health risk assessments. One of the findings of this Report is that the attention and resources allotted to health risk assessment research are not commensurate with its national impact.
Technologies underlying weapons of mass destruction
This report discusses the level of technology required to produce weapons of mass destruction, the material required, and the export controls.
Office of Technology Assessment Fiscal Year 1994 Justification of Estimates, December 1992
This report contains justification for the Office of Technology Assessment's (OTA) estimated FY1994 budget request.
OTA Senior Management Retreat
This document describes the activities at the OTA Senior Management Retreat in Rockwood Manor, Maryland, which was held from November 16-17, 1992.
Difficult-To-Reuse Needles for the Prevention of HIV Infection Among Injecting Drug Abusers
This paper reviews various possibilities of using non-reusable injection technologies for reducing HIV transmission among injecting drug users in the United States. It does not put forth the redesign of injection equipment as a policy option for congressional consideration; it merely examines some of the implications of a proposal put forth by some health experts.
Federal and Private Roles in the Development and Provision of Alglucerase Therapy for Gaucher Disease
This background paper describes the development of alglucerase, illustrates the role that both the Federal Government and private sector can have in making new therapies available for orphan diseases, and lays out some of the tradeoffs that can exist between developing new medical technologies and controlling health care costs.
Genetic Counseling and Cystic Fibrosis Carrier Screening: Results of a Survey
This paper presents results from a 1991 OTA survey of 431 genetic counselors and nurse geneticists. It was conducted to better understand the environment in which the average genetic counselor or nurse in genetics works, to describe the infrastructure and tools available to these professionals, to assess the state of practice in the provision of cystic fibrosis (CF) carrier screening, and to evaluate their attitudes regarding CF carrier screening.
Genetic Tests and Health Insurance: Results of a Survey
This background paper describes results from a 1991 OTA survey of U.S. health insurers’ attitudes toward genetic tests and genetic information— both how they currently view information from various sources (e.g., genetic tests, other medical tests, or family histories) in underwriting decisions and how they might reimburse consumers for genetic tests. It also reports data on the role health insurers expect genetic tests and genetic information will play in their business practices over the coming decade.
Science and Technology Issues in Coastal Ecotourism
This paper presents information on the ecotourism trends; identifies issues related to resource conservation, ecotourism development and management, and planning; and presents questions for possible further consideration.
U.S. Banks and International Telecommunications
This background paper on U.S. banks is one of several case studies prepared as part of a huger assessment of International Telecommunications Networks and U.S.-European Trade in Services.
The Biology of Mental Disorders
This report presents a summary of research into the biological factors associated with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and panic disorder. The report also discusses support for this research and the social context in which it moves forward.
Do Medicaid and Medicare Patients Sue More Often Than Other Patients?
This background paper also responds to the request of the Congressional Sunbelt Caucus that OTA examine and judge the available evidence on whether Medicaid and Medicare patients, particularly obstetrics patients, are more litigious than other patients.
Does Health Insurance Make a Difference?
This background paper reviews and evaluates the available literature linking health insurance coverage with the utilization and process of health care services and with individual health outcomes.
Green Products by Design: Choices for a Cleaner Environment
In this report, OTA provides a conceptual overview of how designers might integrate environmental concerns with traditional design objectives, and how policymakers can best take advantage of such opportunities. Although the concept of “green” design is gathering momentum, a number of technical, behavioral, economic, and informational barriers need to be addressed.
Monitoring Limits on Sea-Launched Cruise Missiles
This report examines in detail ways in which compliance with such a regime might be monitored. Surveying the life-cycle of SLCMs from development testing through deployment and storage, the assessment identifies the ‘indicators’ by which the missiles might be tracked and accounted for. It also assesses the paths of evasion that a determined cheater might take to avoid the proposed monitoring measures.
U.S.-Mexico Trade: Pulling Together or Pulling Apart?
This report finds little likelihood that a NAFTA, by itself, will lead to the most dismal scenarios. But OTA’s analysis also indicates that market forces alone are not likely to produce the social and economic rewards the heads of both states have promised from a free trade agreement.
Cystic Fibrosis and DNA Tests: Implications of Carrier Screening
This report concludes that the value of the cystic fibrosis (CF) carrier test is the information it provides. No one can estimate in common terms what it means to an individual to possess information about his or her genetic status, especially when the value concerns reproductive decision-making. As our knowledge of the human genome increases, what we do with information such as CF carrier status will depend on the perceptions and beliefs of all Americans.
A New Technological Era for American Agriculture
The report concludes that these technologies have the potential to provide new solutions to many agricultural problems. The challenge, however, will be whether government, industry, and the public can strike the proper balance of direction, oversight, and use to allow these technologies to flourish. Congress will be faced with many issues and choices as American agriculture moves into this new era.
Police Body Armor Standards and Testing, Vol. I
This report discusses the standards for body-armor. The report describes the origin of the standard, the rationale for particular provisions, and the main points of controversy, which concern acceptable risks, the validity and discrimination of the test, and the reproducibility of results.
Police Body Armor Standards and Testing, Vol. II—Appendixes
This report is an extension of volume one, that discusses the standards for body-armor. The report describes the origin of the standard, the rationale for particular provisions, and the main points of controversy, which concern acceptable risks, the validity and discrimination of the test, and the reproducibility of results.