Innovation Files

January 25, 2019
World affairs are far more complicated than basketball. But there are profound lessons in that simple game. One of them is that going unassisted is a losing strategy.
January 23, 2019
Critics are wrong about the value of an individual’s data, as they confuse the value data in aggregate can generate with the market price buyers will pay for individual data. Unfortunately, too many lawmakers have begun crafting policies stemming from these misguided notions leading to proposals that are bad for consumers and the digital economy.
January 22, 2019
That tariffs put a damper on R&D investments is straightforward: Firms absorb some of the increased input costs, reducing profits and thus the funds available to invest. But tariffs also undercut R&D at a much deeper level. By reducing the exposure firms face to foreign markets, tariffs limit the potential gains from innovation, thereby lowering the returns from investing in R&D.
January 17, 2019
While expansive versions of a “Green New Deal” have grabbed attention on the left and denial that climate change is human-caused remains a major obstacle on the right, a centrist, bipartisan legislative coalition is emerging on climate and energy policy. It’s time to get things done.
January 16, 2019
If countries do not show proper restraint, they can easily sabotage the global Internet by imposing unreasonable obligations on companies and setting up scenarios where companies are forced into a no-win situation of having to comply with conflicting laws.
January 14, 2019
One of the simplest measures of innovation is the rate at which firms change the goods or services they offer in response to market demands or to take advantage of new technologies, but this phenomenon differs drastically by industry. From 2013 to 2015, 10.4 percent of all U.S. firms introduced new or significantly improved projects—but the figure was 24.3 percent for manufacturing firms versus 9.2 percent of nonmanufacturing firms.
January 7, 2019
In 1983, the Japanese government began a series of robot technology R&D projects, which partnered with Japanese firms. New analysis of 25 years of these projects, from 1993 to 2008, found that not only did these projects create valuable results, they also caused participating firms to be more efficient in their future research.
January 7, 2019
A brief recap of some of the biggest developments and surprises in agricultural biotechnology innovation in 2018.
December 20, 2018
While many medical interventions—from vaccines, anesthesia, antibiotics, and even eyeglasses—have initially seemed like playing god, interventions to manipulate directly the heritable genetic endowment fundamental not only to what makes us human, but to what makes each of us unique, had never been seen before.
December 19, 2018
The United States and likeminded countries should not repeat Australia’s mistakes and should instead embrace strong encryption—not try to cripple it.

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