• Values, Strategy, and America’s Competitive Posture

    “The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.... When you surround an army, leave an outlet free. Do not press a desperate foe too hard.” —Sun Tzu The Art of War  “One has to understand the Chinese intellectual game, which is what we call ‘Go’ [and] they call ‘weiqi’. …it’s a game of strategic encirclement…our intellectual game is chess. Chess is about victory or defeat. Somebody wins.” —Former Secretary of State…

    by The Honorable Alan R. Shaffer; Moriah Locklear, PhD; and Tim Welter, PhD
  • Want US Semiconductor Leadership? Fix the Tax Code

    Introduction Recent events starkly highlighted the importance of semiconductors to the US economy and the fragility of the US semiconductor supply chain. These shortages were estimated to have cost over a full percentage point of 2021 US GDP, prompting Congress to pass the 2022 CHIPS and Science Act to level the playing field for onshore semiconductor manufacturing after decades of decline. However, unrelated tax code changes are threatening to unravel any benefit from the CHIPS…

    by Brian Shirley
  • Reinvigorating Innovation for National Security

    Introducing the National Security Innovation Base (NSIB) The United States has a long tradition of innovative research and development (R&D). Innovation has been particularly important for national security, with the development of advanced weapons systems, superior reconnaissance and surveillance systems, and sensors and detectors intended to help the military defend the nation. Many innovations for national security purposes spill over into benefits for the commercial sector. Sometimes, commercial innovations and products spill over into benefits…

    by Robert Hummel, PhD
  • The Concept of an Economic Warfare Operations Capability (EWOC)

    Introduction The US enjoyed the benefits of a relatively unmatched monopolar position on the global stage in the immediate aftermath of the Cold War. That position has been challenged in recent years by rivals, such as China and Russia, working to shift the geopolitical and global economic environment in their favor.[i] To do so, both nations have employed asymmetric “gray zone” tactics, actions below the threshold of war, but which still vitally threaten the economic and…

    by Tim Welter, PhD
  • Prospects for US Sources of Energy

    The US national security and economy depend on reliable and long-term access to abundant energy sources. Historically, the US has benefited from easy access to energy resources, including coal, oil, gas, wind, solar, and hydro power. Access to energy resources includes oil importation. Events in the 1970s demonstrated that a lack of self-reliance could lead to vulnerabilities. As a result, the US endeavored to achieve “energy independence,” to become a net exporter of energy resources.…

    by Robert Hummel, PhD & Moriah Locklear, PhD

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, technology, and national security issues facing our society. The Institute remains fiercely objective, owning no special allegiance to any single political party or private concern. With over nearly two decades of work on science and technology policy issues, the Potomac Institute has remained a leader in providing meaningful policy options for science and technology, national security, defense initiatives, and S&T forecasting. The Institute hosts academic centers to study related policy issues through research, discussions, and forums. From these discussions and forums, we develop meaningful policy options and ensure their implementation at the intersection of business and government.

These Centers include:

  • Center for Revolutionary Scientific Thought, focusing on S&T futures forecasting;

  • Center for Adaptation and Innovation, chaired by General Al Gray, focusing on military strategy and concept development;

  • Center for Neurotechnology Studies, focusing on S&T policy related to emerging neurotechnologies;

  • Center for Regulatory Science and Engineering, a resource center for regulatory policy; and

  • International Center for Terrorism Studies, an internationally recognized center of expertise in the study of terrorism led by Professor Yonah Alexander.

The Potomac Institute’s mission as a not-for-profit is to serve the public interest by addressing new areas in science and technology and national security policy. These centers lead discussions and develop new thinking in these ar- eas. From this work the Potomac Institute develops policy and strategy for their government customers in national security. A core principle of the Institute is to be a “Think and Do Tank”. Rather than just conduct studies that will sit on the shelf, the Institute is committed to implementing solutions. 

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