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Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research (2014)

Chapter: Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits

« Previous: Appendix C: Participants of Overseas Visits
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
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D

Sample Questions Asked During
the Committee’s Fact-Finding Visits

Committee visits to Naval Research Laboratory, Air Force Research Laboratory and Army Research Laboratory Some questions asked of the laboratories on Technology Awareness and Global Engagement

 

  • Is global engagement in S&T an explicit objective in any research strategy or planning documents?
  • What is your strategy for determining what the ‘best’ S&T is?
  • What mechanisms does lab management employ to facilitate international awareness and engagement among its technical staff?
  • How do you interact with your overseas field offices?
  • How do you engage with the external research community in each of your fields? Specifically, with whom and how do you engage internationally?
  • How do you capture the information you receive, both from conferences and from your direct interaction with foreign researchers? How, and with whom, is this information shared (across research groups, lab-wide, with ASD(R&E) and across DOD S&T enterprise, and beyond)?
  • How do you leverage S&T knowledge and investments made by other researchers across USG?
  • What are the biggest barriers to:

1) understanding what important S&T is happening globally?

2) being engaged in international collaborations?

•   What can be done to remove the barriers mentioned above.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×

Questions/discussion topics for meetings with overseas organizations

Mission:

•   Do you have an international S&T mission? What is it?

o   Is it to maintain S&T Awareness?

o   Is it to build S&T collaborations with foreign partners? How do you choose global partners?

o   Is it to fund research in other countries? Is it to influence future research priorities/investments?

o   Is there a short–term versus and long-term mission or strategy?

Technology Awareness:

  • What mechanisms do you use to maintain global S&T awareness?
  • How do you prioritize which technologies or researchers you would like to engage with?
  • What is your strategy for determining what the ‘best’ science is?
  • Do you use data analytics?
  • Do you participate in conferences? Which conferences do you attend and why?
  • Is your S&T engagement strategy specific to individual countries?

Building and Sustaining Relationships:

  • For each of the following organizations in your country, how would you characterize their willingness to engage with you in S&T: universities, industries, and government agencies? With which have you been the most and least successful, and why? Does your engagement approach vary across each sector?
  • What about for U.S. universities, U.S. industries, and U.S. government agencies (both those in the U.S. and those with overseas offices)?
  • What is your relationship to your national defense science enterprise?
  • Do you ever work with the U.S. defense science enterprise?
  • How do you build and sustain relationships with foreign researchers or organizations?

Coordination:

  • How do you capture the information you receive, both from conferences and from your direct interaction with foreign researchers?
  • How, and with whom, is this information shared?
  • How do you create opportunities to integrate foreign research into your own organization’s larger S&T portfolio?
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×

Metrics:

  • How do you measure the value or success of your global S&T engagement efforts in the near-term (1-5 years) and longer-term (5-10 years)?
  • What are the biggest barriers to success?
  • Do you have examples of work, research, products, etc. that resulted from international research engagement or collaboration?

Career Development:

  • What is the career trajectory for staff who are involved in international S&T programs
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×

Questions for the Services’ Overseas Offices

Mission:

•   What is your mission?

o   Is it S&T Awareness (eyes and ears on the ground?

o   Is it building S&T collaborations with U.S. partners in DoD Labs? in universities?

o   Is it to fund actual research?

o   Is it to influence research priorities/investments, and if so, for whom?

o   Is there a short–term (e.g. taking advantage of a new S&T capability) and long-term (e.g. building an enduring relationship in S&T collaboration) mission?

•   How would you differentiate your mission from that of the other Service offices in Tokyo?

•   How is your mission complementary or different with respect to supporting DOD leveraging of S&T overseas?

Technology Awareness:

  • What mechanisms do you use to maintain global S&T awareness?
  • How do you prioritize which technologies or researchers you would like to engage with?
  • What is your strategy for determining what the ‘best’ science is?
  • Do you use data analytics?
  • Which conferences do you attend and why?
  • Do you have a different S&T engagement strategy for each country in your area of responsibility?

Building and Sustaining Relationships:

  • For each of the following, how would you characterize their willingness to engage with you in S&T: universities, industry, and government? With which have you been the most and least successful, and why? Does your approach for S&T engagement vary across each of these sectors?
  • What funds does your Tokyo office have to support foreign researchers? How do you prioritize which projects you will fund? Which countries receive the majority of funding? How many of these projects go on to receive subsequent funding from your home office?
  • How do you sustain relationships with foreign researchers (particularly ones with whom you do not have established bilateral science programs, such as the Taiwan NanoBio program)?
  • Do you work primarily with university researchers or government officials (and if so, are they foreign defense science)?
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×
  • How do you sell “collaboration or partnership with the U.S.” to foreign researchers (what is your elevator pitch)? What does the U.S. gain from these collaborations?

Coordination:

  • How do you capture the information you receive, both from conferences and from your direct interaction with foreign researchers?
  • How, and with whom, is this information shared?
  • How do you coordinate your efforts with the other Service offices in Tokyo?
  • How do you leverage S&T knowledge and investments, as well as personal/institutional/governmental relationships, made by the other Service offices in Tokyo?
  • Do you interact with other U.S. agencies that have international S&T offices?
  • What is your relationship with NATO STO and TTCP?

Connectivity to your U.S. S&T Office:

  • How do you stay abreast of the S&T areas of interest to your U.S. counterparts?
  • How do you create opportunities to integrate foreign research into your Service’s larger S&T portfolio?
  • Do you have examples of work that you funded or introduced that was subsequently funded by your U.S. office?

Metrics:

  • How do you measure success in the near-term (1-5 years) and longer-term (5-10 years)? E.g., is it how much funding they give out? how well they connect people and technology to the U.S? Are there citable example of people or technology that has benefitted the U.S. DoD?
  • What are the biggest barriers to success?
  • What steps have you taken to compensate for shrinking travel budgets while maintaining awareness of global S&T?
  • Do you believe you have adequate staffing (in terms of number and scientific expertise) and resources (e.g., for infrastructure, programs, conferences, site visits, funding for foreign research, etc.) to accomplish your mission?
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×

Career Development:

  • What was your most immediate position?
  • What kind of training, if any, did you receive for this position?
  • What is the typical career trajectory for staff rotating through the overseas offices?
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×
Page 113
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×
Page 114
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×
Page 115
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×
Page 116
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×
Page 117
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Sample Questions Asked During the Committee's Fact-Finding Visits." National Research Council. 2014. Strategic Engagement in Global S&T: Opportunities for Defense Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18816.
×
Page 118
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According to recent reports, the United States currently accounts for less than one-third of global research and development spending, and it is projected that this fraction will decline to 18% by 2050. These statistics, compounded by the recognition that the United States no longer maintains technological superiority across all research fields, highlight the need for the U.S. research community to stay abreast of emerging science and technology (S&T) around the world, to leverage others' investments, and to seek out collaborations in areas where researchers need to remain at the leading edge.

The United States' Department of Defense (DoD) has long relied on its historical technological superiority to maintain military advantage. However, as the U.S. share of S&T output shrinks and as the U.S. defense research enterprise struggles to keep pace with the expanding challenges of the evolving security environment and the increased speed and cost of global technology development, the DoD must reexamine its strategy for maintaining awareness of emerging S&T developments occurring around the world. To fully leverage these advances and to make strategic research investments, the DoD must assess with whom and in which areas it should collaborate. To delve more deeply into the implications of the globalization of S&T and of international S&T engagement for the DoD, the Office of Naval Research, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research , and the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Research and Technology asked the National Research Council to assess current DoD strategies in the three Services - Army, Air Force, and Navy - for leveraging global S&T and for implementing and coordinating these strategies across the department.

Strategic Engagement in Global S&T assesses the opportunities and challenges stemming from the globalization of S&T and the implications for the DoD and its Services. This report considers DoD strategies in the three Services for leveraging global S&T and implementation and coordination of these strategies across DoD. The report explores models for global S&T engagement utilized by other domestic and foreign organizations.Strategic Engagement in Global S&T assesses how the ongoing globalization of S&T may impact research funding and priorities and workforce needs, as well as issues of building and maintaining trusted relationships and avoiding technology surprises. This report will be of interest to researchers and industry professionals with expertise in the globalization of science and technology, international engagement, the defense research enterprise, program evaluation, and national security.

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