This appendix contains brief examples of key references and actions for science, technology, and innovation.1 Page numbers are referenced and text is verbatim, except where noted, with bold emphasis added. See the whole Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR) at: http://www.state.gov/s/dmr/qddr/.
Secretary Clinton’s Preface
In development, we are re-establishing USAID as the world’s premier development agency. To make sure that our investments have the biggest possible impact, we will focus our efforts in six core areas where we have expertise. We’re investing heavily in innovation to spark more advances in those areas. We’re improving the way we measure results, and we will make funding decisions based on those results.
A final critical trend reshaping the global context of U.S. foreign policy is a broad set of technological innovations that have increased the pace of international affairs and facilitated a new era of human connectivity. Science, engineering, technology, and innovation are the engines of modern society and a dominant force in globalization and international economic development. Despite fierce competition and rapidly increasing parity in science, technology, and engineering assets among nations, the United States remains predominant in most fields and is a world leader in education, research, and innovation.
Modern innovations themselves result in significant changes to the way foreign policy must be conducted and have changed aspects of diplomatic relationships. Innovations also both exacerbate other challenges and create potential new opportunities to resolve them. Today, information flows across the globe at rates and magnitudes never before imaginable. As a result, people
1 Derived from longer document prepared by STAS in 2013.
everywhere know about events around the world within minutes, if not seconds. An economic or political development on one continent can immediately cause ripples across the world—be it an economic disruption, an act of violence, or a call for peace. Our responses must be in real time, with a premium on speed and flexibility.
Accelerate development with science and technology. Secretary Clinton, (USAID) Administrator Shah and the President’s Science Advisor, Dr. John Holdren, have set in motion an effort to collaborate with many of the world’s leading scientists and development thinkers, along with leaders of key federal science agencies, so that the world’s poor can benefit from advances in science and technology.
At State, the Office of the Science and Technology Advisor will continue to promote global scientific and technological progress and cooperation as integral components of U.S. diplomacy. The Office provides scientific and technological advice to the Department of State; enhances science and technology literacy and capacity within State; and shapes a global perspective on emerging and envisioned scientific and technological developments.
The Secretary of State’s newly created Office of Innovation will continue to expand its already decisive mark on development. Within its first 18 months, the Secretary’s Innovation Office dispatched “tech delegations”—small teams of technology executives, entrepreneurs, NGO leaders, and U.S. diplomats—to several countries, including Colombia and Iraq, helping these states transition to a brighter future, as well as to Russia, in support of its efforts to modernize its economy. These delegations have engineered mobile programs to better detect and report landmines in former-FARC strongholds throughout Colombia. In Iraq, they have piloted a program placing young Iraqi engineers into American technology start-ups for up to six months, teaching them the skills necessary to establish successful technology businesses back home. And in Russia, they have established a prize for Russian software developers and engineers to create new technologies to prevent trafficking in women and children.
At USAID, Administrator Shah has put forward a plan to ensure that USAID is a global leader in employing science, technology, and research to solve traditional development challenges. He has appointed a Science and Technology Advisor and established an Office of Science and Technology. He has also actively enlisted innovators from around the world in an effort to highlight game-changing innovations such as dirt-powered fuel cells that can light remote villages, irrigation pipes that can filter and desalinate water, and cheap, practical medical devices that can save lives. Going forward, we will use science and technology to address development challenges through:
- Grand Challenges and Prizes for Development that will challenge scientists to develop game-changing solutions to specific development problems, such as simple, cost-effective ways to provide clean water or inexpensive but durable computers.
- High Risk, High Reward Research Funds that will support U.S.based research and support our overseas missions in applying new appropriate technologies and scientific solutions for the developing world.
- “Apps” for Development that will invest in promising new technological platforms, including cellular networks and devices, to create mobile applications to support development.
- Leveraging the significant assets of the full federal science community to find solutions for the next generation of shared development challenges. USAID will partner with the larger federal science community, facilitating connections between and among developing countries and this research community.
We will embrace new partnerships that link the on-the-ground experience of our diplomats and development experts with the energy and resources of civil society and the scientific and business communities.
Part of our approach is to embrace new tools and technology and foster the freedom to connect. The revolution in connection technologies—including the Internet, SMS, social media, and increasingly ubiquitous and sophisticated mobile applications—give us new tools for engagement and development and open new horizons for what diplomacy can mean. These technologies are the platform for the communications, collaboration, and commerce of the 21st century. They are connecting people to people, to knowledge, and to global networks.
The accelerating pace of change and exponential increase in connectivity that mark today’s international system will produce unintended or perhaps even unexpected consequences. In an interconnected world, cascading changes can and will amplify the significance of a small initial event.... To adapt to these trends, science and technology must be enlisted in an unprecedented fashion—as part of both our bilateral and multilateral diplomacy.
Investing more in science and technology activities. Strengthening the ability of our people to collaborate with others on science and technology is a crucial part of U.S. public diplomacy.
The National Security Strategy and Presidential Policy Directive on Global Development recognize the power of innovation and modern technology to transform lives around the world and our development policy. Innovation is a key engine of long-term economic growth. History shows how science and engineering open the door to revolutions in development... Specifically, we will:
- Promote new discoveries and scientific breakthroughs. Innovation, in all its forms, must be a centerpiece of the U.S. approach to development. We will promote new discoveries and scientific breakthroughs as well as both evolutionary and revolutionary changes in our programming and business practices.