RSEC routinely works to facilitate a bigger conversation on regulatory issues that matter.  We bring together the regulator, regulated, and stakeholder communities for meaningful discussions about topical and important regulatory issues.  Followings these discussions, the RSEC team does their best to summarize the important information derived from these events and publish this work, which consists of the study teams Findings, Conclusions, and Recommendations.  Below you will find information about the latest RSEC events.

Upcoming Seminars

Stumbling Over ITAR: How Does Industry Cope with the Regulations?

Tuesday - December 1, 2015

12:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Potomac Institute for Policy Studies 

901 N. Stuart Street, Suite 1200

Arilnigton, VA, 22207

What is ITAR?

Born out of the Arms Export Control Act (AECA) of 1976, the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) authorizes the executive branch to control exports of “defense articles and services.” While a list of items and information regulated under ITAR are enumerated in the U.S. Munitions List (USML), interpretation is difficult and often includes ambiguous categories that reach deep into supply chains and research areas. ITAR places the burden on the developer possessing information. Essentially, every U.S. person is expected to understand the USML and export restrictions to prevent transfer of ITAR technical information to a non-U.S. person.

ITAR’s Effect on Industry

ITAR-compliant commercial enterprises cannot compete in a global marketplace in which other businesses have a self-advertised, ITAR-free competitive advantage, and are thus not frozen by the incessant threat of ITAR litigation. Small business is especially disadvantaged when competing with large multinational counterparts. Non-military systems that contain USML components become ITAR restricted, which induces foreign manufacturers to use non-U.S. components in order to market their systems as “ITAR-free”. This encourages U.S. companies to avoid participating in defense work for fear of tainting products with the ITAR label. Both domestic and foreign industries avoid purchasing American components in order to develop products that are exclusive of ITAR’s inherent complications. U.S. multinationals establish research centers abroad specifically to conduct research that might be subject to ITAR if performed by Americans, sacrificing American employment opportunities. Under ITAR, every commercial enterprise engaging in defense research work, together with all employees, must track the “U.S.-person” status of every staff member and every visitor. ITAR might not be such a burden if the USML were clear and concise; if the distinction between defense work and commercial research were delineated; and nationality were easily identified. However, globalization and increasing convergence of technology research with multi-use objectives makes discernment using the USML impossible. The regulations are dependent upon self- declaration by foreign persons, resulting in guesswork as opposed to compliance. In those areas in which U.S. technological dominance is not as commanding as it once was, protecting USML-related information from disclosure makes no sense. ITAR not only suppresses commerce by restricting foreign sales, but also erodes America’s technological superiority by inhibiting our best scientists and researchers from vital collaboration.

Seminar

This seminar will assemble leaders in ITAR-regulated industries and government officials who implement these policies. We will discuss the benefits and barriers created by ITAR and determine if, and how, its goals can be achieved while maintaining an environment conducive to industry innovation. A distinguished panel will examine ITAR’s implementation, its pitfalls and advantages, and potential alternatives. By creating an environment where industry and government can discuss these issues candidly, we seek to instigate positive change to better serve the goals on which ITAR was originally founded. 

Seminars

A Seminar on

Regulatory Efficiency:

Is Our Regulatory Process Working

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

12:00PM – 2:00PM, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies

For every law that the United States Government has passed since 1976 an average of 19 final rule documents have been published per year.  Those interested in policy often focus on the effects of legislation, but a piece of legislation is only as impactful as the regulations that interpret and implement it.  Laws generally do not dictate the language of regulations; they instead grant authority to federal regulatory agencies to create the particular rules that govern society.  The rules created by agencies through the rulemaking process have a more direct and tangible effect on the American people than laws passed in Congress. In order to ensure policies enacted by Congress are creating the desired benefits for society, in the least burdensome way, a method to measure the efficiency of our regulations and regulatory processes is needed.

This seminar is part of the 2015 Regulatory Science & Engineering Symposia Series, an initiative of the Potomac Institute’s Regulatory Science & Engineering Center. The series is intended to provide a forum to discuss the United States Federal rulemaking process in order to develop a clearer understanding for how it works, the assessment criteria used during it, the impact it has on society, and importantly its effectiveness at changing society’s behavior for the better. This seminar will focus on discussing the effectiveness of our current Federal rulemaking process and the necessary steps needed to be taken in order to develop a quantitative, reliable metric for measuring regulatory efficiency.  The distinguished panelists will discuss their experiences with the Federal regulatory process and offer insight into what a metric for evaluating regulatory efficiency might look like.

Date:

Monday, September 15th, 2015 from 12:00PM-2:00PM

Place:

Potomac Institute for Policy Studies

901 N. Stuart Street, Suit 1200

Arlington, VA 22203

Agenda:

12:00 PM: Welcome & Opening Remarks

12:05 PM: Participant Introductions

12:10 PM: Panel discussion

1:30 PM: Questions & Answer Session

1:55 PM: Concluding Remarks

The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies is an independent, 501(c)(3), not-for-profit public policy research institute. The Institute identifies and aggressively shepherds discussion on key science and technology issues facing our society. From these discussions and forums, we develop meaningful science and technology policy options and ensure their implementation at the intersection of business and government.

 

Workshops

A Workshop on

International Traffic in Arms Regulations:

Impact on Science, Technology, and National Security

Monday, July 27th, 2015

12:00PM – 3:00PM, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies

The Department of State’s International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) controls the export of defense articles. The goal of ITAR is to maintain the United States’ edge in defense technology and safeguard national security by denying advanced military technologies to potential foreign adversaries. In order to achieve this goal, ITAR restricts the ability of companies to develop and export technologies with potential military use and limits the ability of researchers to collaborate with international partners and share technical information. The State Department’s most recent ITAR amendments attempt to address concerns about the impact of ITAR on domestic innovation, but there is an ongoing debate among commercial, government, and academic stakeholders about the impact of ITAR on national security and science and technology research.

This workshop aims to discuss the ITAR’s impact on domestic science and technology research, foreign defense capabilities, and national security. The distinguished participants in this discussion will provide insight on their experiences with ITAR and its current ability to deter foreign adversaries from obtaining advanced military technologies. We hope that this workshop will lead to a beneficial discussion on the current effects of ITAR and implications for reform.

Date:

Monday, July 27th, 2015 from 12:00PM-3:00PM

Place:

Potomac Institute for Policy Studies

901 N. Stuart Street, Suit 1200

Arlington, VA 22203

Agenda:

12:00 PM: Welcome & Opening Remarks

Michael Swetnam, CEO, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies

Charles Mueller, Ph.D., Director, Regulatory Science & Engineering Center, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies

12:10 PM: Participant Introductions

12:30 PM: Roundtable Discussion

Moderator: Robert Hummel, Ph.D., Chief Scientist, Potomac Institute for Policy Studies

2:00 PM: Break

2:15 PM: Informal Discussion on Findings & Recommendations

2:55 PM: Concluding Remarks

Discussion Questions:

  1. Does the United States Munitions List include defense articles in which the U.S. does not have a substantial technological lead?
  2. What is the impact of current regulations and proposed amendments on commercial, government, and academic stakeholders involved in science and technology research? What are the national security implications of these effects?
  3. Domestic firms in the science and technology sectors that focus their resources on non-defense technologies are not concerned with ITAR compliance. Do you know of cases where companies have stopped doing defense work or avoided defense work because of ITAR?
  4. How does ITAR impact foreign development of military technologies? Do current regulations and proposed amendments debilitate foreign defense capabilities or increase the profits and resources of foreign weapons manufacturers?
  5. Do you know of cases where ITAR violations with respect to technical information have threatened U.S. national security? 
  6. To what extent could the protections of ITAR be jeopardized by cyber threats?

The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies is an independent, 501(c)(3), not-for-profit public policy research institute. The Institute identifies and aggressively shepherds discussion on key science and technology issues facing our society. From these discussions and forums, we develop meaningful science and technology policy options and ensure their implementation at the intersection of business and government.



 



Address

The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies
Ballston Metro Center Office Towers
901 North Stuart Street, Suite 1200
Arlington, VA 22203
Tel 703.525.0770

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Our Mission

The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies is an independent, 501(c)(3), not-for-profit public policy research institute. The Institute identifies and aggressively shepherds discussion on key science and technology issues facing our society. From these discussions and forums, we develop meaningful science and technology policy options and ensure their implementation at the intersection of business and government.

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