How Nine Flawed Policy Concepts Hinder the United States From Adopting the Advanced-Industry Strategy It Needs

Few policymakers and even fewer pundits or economic analysts understand U.S. competitiveness problems in a way that would lead them to the logical conclusion that a national innovation and competitiveness strategy would count as a viable solution.

Monopoly Myths: Is Concentration Leading to Fewer Start-Ups?

Many say the decline in new business formation over the past 30 years has been caused by increased monopoly. But there is no statistical relationship between start-up creation and change in concentration by industry; high-growth start-up activity is healthy.

Monopoly Myths: Do Internet Platforms Threaten Competition?

The rapid growth of large Internet platforms has caused some activists, scholars, and political officials to worry about their impact on competition. These concerns are largely misplaced.

Ensuring U.S. Biopharmaceutical Competitiveness

If the United States is serious about maintaining its leadership in biopharmaceuticals, then it’s time for policymakers to articulate and embrace a robust sectoral competitiveness strategy.

Lessons From the Pandemic: Broadband Policy After COVID-19

U.S. broadband networks weathered the COVID-19 surge in traffic better than most peer nations. The pandemic should galvanize policymakers to ensure broadband can serve as an essential lifeline for everyone, including low-income and rural residents.

Why New Calls to Subvert Commercial Encryption Are Unjustified

Law enforcement argues that “warrant-proof” encryption presents a unique and urgent threat by preventing them from accessing user data. But history shows that government efforts to subvert encryption would negatively impact individuals and businesses. As such, banning the technology is not the answer.

Monopoly Myths: Are Markets Becoming More Concentrated?

Not really. Despite the measured rise in concentration in some industries, in the vast majority of markets it remains well below the levels that would normally trigger antitrust concerns.

Beyond the Energy Techlash: The Real Climate Impacts of Information Technology

Alarmists claim the tech sector’s carbon footprint is mushrooming out of control. But they wildly misrepresent the facts. Not only is the ICT sector making significant progress in decarbonizing, but ICT is also a powerful technology that enables other sectors to become more energy efficient.

How China’s Mercantilist Policies Have Undermined Global Innovation in the Telecom Equipment Industry

China’s state-backing of Huawei and ZTE allowed these companies to seize global market share from more innovative international competitors, reducing their growth in sales and investments in R&D. This, in turn, hurt global innovation in the industry.

Reforming FedRAMP: A Guide to Improving the Federal Procurement and Risk Management of Cloud Services

FedRAMP—the government program that sets standards for assessing, authorizing, and monitoring the security of cloud systems—can significantly improve. Absent reform, it will hamper agencies’ adoption of cloud services.

Faulty Prescription: Why a “Buy American” Approach for Drugs and Medical Products Is the Wrong Solution

COVID-19 has prompted calls for reshoring of medical goods, including strict “Buy American” prescriptions. While reshoring is important, “Buy American” fails to recognize the value of the global supply chain and avoids addressing the real problem, China.

Freedom Is Not Free License: Freedom House’s Flawed Measurement of “Internet Freedom”

The advocacy group’s annual report on Internet and digital media freedom is more polemic than dispassionate analysis. The State Department should stop funding it unless it focuses on true violations of Internet freedom, such as political persecution.

Monopoly Myths: Is Concentration Leading to Higher Markups?

No, markups have increased only slightly in some industries—and have stayed the same overall—which refutes claims that market concentration is giving firms more pricing power.

Building a Global Framework for Digital Health Services in the Era of COVID-19

Health data and digital technologies will be essential for improving global health outcomes beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. Low- and middle-income nations, with fledgling digital health strategies and many barriers to overcome, stand to benefit the most.

Monopoly Myths: Is Concentration Leading to Higher Profits?

In short: no. Profits are difficult to measure accurately, but the best method is to focus on domestic earnings outside the financial sector as a share of net value added. By that measure, the long-term trend has been in decline.

Mind the Gap: A Design for a New Energy Technology Commercialization Foundation

The United States is struggling to move innovative energy technologies from discovery to scale. This gap could put the climate and U.S. investments at risk. A nonprofit foundation working with the Department of Energy could help fill the gap.

More and Better: Building and Managing a Federal Energy Demonstration Project Portfolio

Demonstrating the commercial viability of new technologies for deep decarbonization requires federal funding. But the government’s past record is decidedly mixed. So Congress should increase funding for demonstration projects while reforming how they are administered.

A U.S. National Strategy for 5G and Future Wireless Innovation

5G wireless will drive economic growth for decades to come, but we need a comprehensive strategy to ensure a robust deployment and adoption of secure networks. A U.S. strategy for 5G should play to our strengths to overcome unfair practices that have made Huawei a leader.

The Case for a National Industrial Strategy to Counter China’s Technological Rise

Further stimulus in response to the COVID-19 crisis should focus not just on short-term recovery, but also the long-term competitiveness of key technologically sophisticated, traded-sector industries. Now is the time to recognize America needs a robust industrial strategy.

Most State Unemployment Websites Fail Mobile and Accessibility Tests

ITIF tested the page load speed, mobile-friendliness, and accessibility of all 50 state unemployment websites using publicly available tools. The results show that many of these sites are not just ill-suited to handle significant rises in traffic, but also poorly designed.

Digital Policy for Physical Distancing: 28 Stimulus Proposals That Will Pay Long-Term Dividends

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed gaps in society’s digital readiness for social distancing. If policymakers seize the opportunity to address these gaps, they can make it easier to manage the next pandemic while providing significant long-term social and economic benefits.

How SBA’s Affiliation Rules for Venture-Backed Firms Will Limit the Effectiveness of the Paycheck Protection Program

The failure of small venture-backed businesses to qualify for Paycheck Protection Loans could cost more than 275,000 jobs this year directly and more 1 million jobs in total, including indirect losses. The Trump administration should waive the Small Business Administration’s “affiliation rule” in this crisis to prevent these mass layoffs and furloughs.

Harnessing Heat: How the Federal Government Can Advance Geothermal Energy

Geothermal energy has yet to follow the trajectory of rapidly expanding, cheap renewables like wind and solar. To unlock the enormous potential of this clean, reliable source of energy, the federal government can drive innovation and address barriers to adoption.

Energy Innovation in the FY 2021 Budget: Congress Should Lead

Lawmakers should make energy innovation a national imperative, and at least double U.S. investment in clean energy RD&D by 2025.

Surveying the Damage: Why We Must Accurately Measure Cross-Border Data Flows and Digital Trade Barriers

Countries that value an open, competitive digital economy should use surveys to improve quantitative analysis of cross-border data flows, because policymakers can’t effectively manage and address barriers to digital trade unless they can measure it.

Accelerating Energy Innovation in the 116th Congress: 10 Priorities for 2020

As the House and Senate consider comprehensive energy legislation, these 10 priorities have already won the support of large bipartisan majorities at the committee level in at least one chamber. They should form the nucleus of a bipartisan energy package that gets signed into law this year.

Why and How to Mount a Strong, Trilateral Response to China’s Innovation Mercantilism

The United States, the EU, and Japan must band together in stronger trilateral partnership to pressure China into rolling back the mercantilist trade practices it uses to grow advanced, innovation-driven industries.

Innovation Drag: China’s Economic Impact on Developed Nations

An examination of the scholarly literature shows that China’s mercantilist-powered economic rise and trade expansion have slowed the progress of innovation in the global economy—particularly in North America and Europe.