The Center for Revolutionary Scientific Thought brings together individuals from a variety of backgrounds to foster discussion on science and technology futures from both an academic and policy perspective. CReST intends to develop new ideas about the future directions of science and technology, formulate strategies on how to achieve revolutionary gains in S&T, provide a forum to discuss the associated political, ethical, legal and social issues, and inform the public and policymakers to solve vital societal problems.

The Potomac Institute publishes many publications and reports, hosts events on timely topics, and produces a periodic newsletter - Focus.

Please subscribe here if you are interested in receiving information and updates on our activities.


The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies hosts the Navigator Awards, a dinner gala that recognizes extraordinary individuals from the Legislative Branch, The Executive Branch, and the Private Sector for recent or lifetime contributions to national science and technology policy.

The Institute believes that honoring these leaders for their accomplishments promotes a continued understanding of science and technology and its growing impact on government and society. Navigation, one of man’s enduring technical challenges, is equally challenging in policy. The Navigator Award is named to reflect our understanding that national leadership in science and technology policy is a never-ending process of finding the way ahead.


Strategy & Planning Division

The Strategy & Planning Division of The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies contributes to the formation of national science and technology policy by providing technical and strategic planning support and advice to the U.S. Government.

 

Policy Research Division

The Policy Research Division conducts research and presents studies and policy papers to the Legislative and Executive branches and agencies. Staff areas of expertise include science and technology policy, military technology and force structure, bioterrorism, avian flu and preparedness, cyberterrorism, weapons of mass destruction, technology and civil liberties, legal issues, neurotechnology, intelligence affairs, international security and stability, and the South Caucases region.

Concepts and Analyses Division

The Concepts and Analyses Division  researches the latest technologies, ideas and concepts for military use.  Projects range from the purely conceptual to practical applications, including field testing equipment and systems in the design and development phases.

 

Intergovernmental Personnel Assignments (IPAs)

Several Potomac Institute personnel serve at federal agencies in accordance with provisions of the Intergovernmental Personnel Act.

Strategy & Planning Division

The Strategy & Planning Division of The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies contributes to the formation of national science and technology policy by providing technical and strategic planning support and advice to the U.S. Government.

Our Mission

The Institute is engaged in a wide range of support activities that aid critical national programs including: evaluating and developing Federal information technology policy and R&D investment options; analyzing military capabilities; exploring emerging threats and opportunities; evaluating and implementing effective technology transition; managing Federal technical programs; developing operational concepts; and assisting in long-range planning.

The Strategy & Planning staff has a reputation for technical and managerial excellence, offering customers solutions to the complex problems of managing the science and technology process, as well as improving organizational policy development and decision making.

The Strategy & Planning Division provides support in three ways:

  • Provides professional staff directly to the Government as part of the Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA);
  • Provides professional staff, as contractors, to contribute to and manage specific technical projects; and
  • Provides collaborative expertise and resources in support of Federal science and technology projects.

Since its inception, the Institute has supported a variety of government offices, including:

Intergovernmental Personnel Assignments (IPAs)

 

Several Potomac Institute personnel serve at federal agencies in accordance with provisions of the Intergovernmental Personnel Act.

The International Center for Terrorism Studies (ICTS) is directed by Professor Yonah Alexander. The 21st Century brings with it the beginning of a new age of terrorism. The Institute and the Center have an intellectual obligation and a moral responsibility to focus its efforts on the scholarly understanding of terrorism.

Establishing the RSEC

The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies (PIPS) is a non-profit independent organization devoted to the development of meaningful policy options and ensuring their implementation at the intersection of business and government.  The Institute bases their approach on information gained from discussions, analysis, and data concerning science, technology, and national security issues facing our society.  Science and technology (S&T) are needed to support the development of good policy, and the Institute understands this.  It promotes and assists in the use of sound S&T to guide policies that are developed and implemented by both the Executive and Legislative branches of government. For the Institute to continue to be successful in its mission it must remain committed to helping foster the development of leading S&T policy for the betterment of society.

PIPS roots in S&T policy have been founded in the legislative branch since its inception, as it grew out of the Congressional Office of Technology and Assessment.  Over time, more of the Institute’s S&T policy work began to involve various levels of the executive branch.  The Institute recently recognized a need for the study of regulatory policy processes.  Since 1976, when the Office of the Federal Register made the number of documents published in the final rules section of the Federal Register first available, there have been 184,342 final rule documents published.  In that same amount of time, there have been 9,539 bills turned into law by Congress.  Over that same amount of time, the number of pages published in the Federal Register regarding Final Rules has increased by approximately 300 pages per year.  The number of pages continues to increase despite the fact the number of actual Final Rules in the Federal Register has slightly decreased over the last 20 years.  Furthermore, since 1980 there have been 4 major Acts passed by Congress and at least 5 Executive Orders that provide additional rules and exceptions to the regulatory process.  It seems obvious the mechanisms that drive the regulatory process are inefficient and could benefit from a more science-based approach.

Applying a science-based approach to the process of creating and implementing regulation is known as regulatory science and engineering, most often just referred to as regulatory science.  The field of regulatory science is focused on identifying appropriate frameworks to instill the best available science and engineering practices into the process of developing and implementing beneficial regulation policy. Regulatory science and engineering can be defined thusly: a distinct scientific discipline that constitutes the foundation of regulatory, legislative, and judicial decisions. Regulatory science and engineering is both interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary in that it relies upon many basic and applied scientific disciplines, from ABC to XYZ.  Currently, the application of regulatory science during the regulatory process only occurs within the FDA.  Given the inefficiencies in the current Federal regulatory system it seems clear incorporating the application of regulatory science to the regulatory process is worth considering.

In response to this observation, the Institute identified the need for a center whose vision was to become the center of excellence in the U.S. on regulatory policy.  The Regulatory Science & Engineering Center (RSEC) is the Institute’s response to this demand.  RSEC serves to study and influence the regulatory process by incorporating the best available science and engineering practices into its policy recommendations.  Like PIPS, RSEC will only be successful in its mission if it continues to help foster the development of leading S&T regulatory policy for the betterment of society.

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.

RSEC works tirelessly to ensure that their time spent impacts the regulatory process in a way that creates meaningful change, change that ultimately leads to the betterment of society.  Below you will find RSEC's current progress in continually striving to achieve their mission.

Official Comments on Regulations (2015)

Welcome to the RSEC Blog!

Here you will find opinion pieces on some of the latest and most important regulatory issues facing the country.  The point of these blogs is to raise awareness and help facilitate a bigger conversation that hopefully leads to actions that ensure the regulatory issues are resolved in a way that leads to the betterment of society.  Please comment and provide feedback!

Welcome to RSEC News!

Almost everyday there is some regulatory issue that arises in the news or in the form of scholarly publications.  With so much information constantly being generated the RSEC team realized the need for somebody to sift through it and pull out the really important things.  That is the purpose of this page.  The RSEC team does their best to keep up with the ‘Regulatory beat’ and here you will a find a collection of the daily material that provide context for regulatory issues we should all be aware of. 

Resources and Tools Description text

Welcome to the RSEC Database! 

This page is intended to serve as a hub for important and relevant regulatory policy knowledge.  On this page, we have attempted to compile various publications that we think are useful in helping understand how the regulatory process currently operates.  All of this information can be found on the Internet through traditional web searches, but we have compiled this information in one convenient location.  Additionally, you will find here some of our own content where we have taken the time to attempt to clarify and summarize various aspects of the regulatory process we felt lack a coherent explanation.  

Please feel free to browse, learn, and importantly, provide us feedback about how we can continue to improve this database.

About The Center for Neurotechnology Studies
The Center for Neurotechnology Studies (CNS) is directed by Dr. Jennifer Buss. CNS provides neutral, in-depth analysis of matters at the intersection of neuroscience and technology—neurotechnology—and public policy. The Center anticipates legal, and social issues associated with emerging neurotechnology, and shepherds constructive discourse on these issues. It provides a forum for reasoned consideration of issues both by subject area experts and by the public. The Center partners with the research community for discourse and consultation on sound neurotechnology research and applications. The Center cultivates and stewards knowledge and discussion on the implications of neurotechnology in academic, administrative, entrepreneurial, regulatory, legislative and judicial enterprises. CNS serves as authoritative counsel to government agencies pursuing neurotechnology by providing expertise in the sciences, law, and social policy.
 

Activities of the Center for Neurotechnology Studies

The Center actively shepherds research and public debate on neurotechnology, and advises public and private sectors working to study and develop neuroscience and technology. These objectives are achieved through:

Research: CNS is dedicated to advancing knowledge and understanding of the foci, use, and impact(s) of neurotechnology, particularly as relates to legal and social issues arising in and from this field.

Workshops/Seminars: CNS hosts lectures, seminars, and other activities to address development and issues of neurotechnology.

Briefings: The Center informs policy-makers and agency personnel on emerging scientific, legal, and social issues related to the development and implementation of neurotechnologies.

Publications: The Center publishes papers on all aspects of neurotechnology in monographs, specialized journals, and the popular press. This contribution to the public debate fosters a broader and deeper understanding, and helps to shape a more reasoned and productive dialogue on these issues.
 
 

 

The mission of the Potomac Institute Cyber Center is to offer multi-disciplinary technology policy expertise, experience, analysis and exposure to the discussion and development of cyber security in the democratic countries.

A PLAN FOR CYBER READINESS: A BASELINE AND AN INDEX

National economic growth is deeply dependent upon the secure utilization of information communication technology (ICT) and the health of the overall Internet economy.  Countries are pursuing development and modernization initiatives to nurture their respective national information societies in the digital age by increasing their productivity, enhancing work force skills, driving innovation, and delivering gross domestic product (GDP) growth.  At present, there is no single methodology to evaluate any particular country’s maturity and commitment to securing their respective cyber infrastructure.  The Cyber Readiness Index seeks to fill that void.

The Cyber Readiness Index documents the core components of cyber readiness:

  • National strategy
  • Incident response
  • E-crime and law enforcement
  • Information sharing
  • Investment in Research and Development
  • Diplomatic engagement/ influence
  • Ability to respond militarily in a crisis situation

SeaPort-e

In May 2008, the Naval Surface Warfare Center awarded an Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quality (IDIQ) Prime Contract to the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies to provide a wide range of engineering, technical and programmatic services.

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GSA Schedule

For federal procurement, the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies can execute contracts through the GSA Schedule.

Read more...

 

A PLAN FOR CYBER READINESS: A BASELINE AND AN INDEX

National economic growth is deeply dependent upon the secure utilization of information communication technology (ICT) and the health of the overall Internet economy.  Countries are pursuing development and modernization initiatives to nurture their respective national information societies in the digital age by increasing their productivity, enhancing work force skills, driving innovation, and delivering gross domestic product (GDP) growth.  At present, there is no single methodology to evaluate any particular country’s maturity and commitment to securing their respective cyber infrastructure.  The Cyber Readiness Index seeks to fill that void.

The Cyber Readiness Index documents the core components of cyber readiness:

  • National strategy
  • Incident response
  • E-crime and law enforcement
  • Information sharing
  • Investment in Research and Development
  • Diplomatic engagement/ influence
  • Ability to respond militarily in a crisis situation