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Globalization of Materials R&D: Time for a National Strategy
Addressing the needs that became clear during the course of this study, mitigating the risks identified, and answering outstanding questions—most of which boil down to matters of risk tolerance and management—require the nation’s public policy makers to formulate a national response strategy to the globalization of MSE R&D. The recommendations in this chapter provide a framework for a robust strategy that will assure a positive impact and outcome for the United States and the nation’s continued access to current MSE R&D. The framework is based on a series of initiatives that will benchmark MSE R&D in the United States, define the MSE R&D challenges and opportunities in meeting 21st century national security needs, manage an IP regulatory framework that supports U.S. MSE innovation in a globalized environment, and build a national infrastructure to support a global role for the United States. The challenge here is multidimensional and intrinsically interconnected across many agencies within the federal government.
In closing it is worth noting that the President’s mandate for defense transformation is to “challenge the status quo and envision a new architecture of American defense for decades to come.” In addition, the White House’s Office of Management and Budget has identified R&D for homeland and national security as a presidential priority. Number five of the top five priorities of the DOD Office of Force Transformation is to “discover, create, or cause to be created new military capabilities to broaden the capabilities base and to mitigate risk.” Achieving these goals will require each sector—that is, government, industry, and academia—to actively manage by means of a well-defined strategy its participation in the increasingly global research and development theater.