Innovation drives countries’ long-term economic growth and improvements in quality of life. But the competition amongst nations for innovation leadership has intensified even as the increased complexity of technological innovation has made it more difficult to achieve. For these reasons, the federal government needs to step up its game when it comes to technology commercialization policies and programs.
If America is going to effectively compete with the world in the modern global innovation economy, it will need to do a better job of transforming knowledge into new companies and products here at home. Achieving this requires new policies that can help get technologies out of the laboratory and transfer them to market for commercialization by private-sector actors.
To help policymakers address these challenges, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation and the Brookings Institution’s Bass Initiative on Innovation and Placemaking collaborated to propose 50 actions that the incoming Trump administration and new Congress can take to support tech transfer and commercialization nationwide. The paper’s recommendations range from prioritizing innovation districts in federal R&D outlays to implementing federal innovation vouchers to connect startups with research institutions.
The report’s 50 policy actions align with five major policy imperatives:
- Strengthen innovation districts and regional technology clusters;
- Bolster institutions supporting tech transfer, commercialization, and innovation;
- Expand technology transfer and commercialization-related programs and investments;
- Promote high-growth, tech-based entrepreneurship; and
- Stimulate private-sector innovation.
Image credit: Argonne National Laboratory.