The NRC delivered the first triennial review of the federal National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) in 2006 (NRC, 2006), pursuant to the 2lst Century Nanotechnology Research and Development Act, Section 5 of Public Law 108-153. The NRC will appoint a committee to conduct the next triennial NNI review as specified in the law. The overall objective for this NNI review is to make recommendations to the Nanoscale Science, Engineering, and Technology (NSET) Subcommittee and the National Nanotechnology Coordination Office that will improve the value of the National Nanotechnology Initiative’s (NNI) strategy and portfolio for basic research, applied research, and applications of nanotechnology to advance the commercialization, manufacturing capability, national economy, and national security interest of the United States. Toward this objective the NNI review will include the tasks listed below.
1. Examine the role of the NNI in maximizing opportunities to transfer selected technologies to the private sector, provide an assessment of how well the NNI is carrying out this role, and suggest new mechanisms to foster transfer of technologies and improvements to NNI operations in this area where warranted;
2. Assess the suitability of current procedures and criteria for determining progress towards NNI goals, suggest definitions of success and associated metrics, and provide advice on those organizations (government or nongovernment) that could perform evaluations of progress;
3. Review NNI’s management and coordination of nanotechnology research across both civilian and military federal agencies.
In addition to the proposed statement of task, the National Academies’ National Materials and Manufacturing Board will support this work through strategic planning and program initiation activities that will include a board meeting, developing the proposed program of work for the committee, identifying nominees for consideration for committee membership, monitoring the progress in the study, and developing ideas for the report’s dissemination and follow up activities.