House to Vote on America COMPETES Act After Senate Passes Version on Friday

Late last Friday December 17, the Senate passed an amended version of the America COMPETES Act to reauthorize spending for a number of science, education, and technology programs and agencies. The Senate “hotlined” the bill, enabling it to pass unanimously without a recorded vote. The final Senate-passed version of the America COMPETES bill is available here.

The House is set to take up the Senate’s version of America COMPETES in session Tuesday, December 21 in one of the final acts of the 111th Congress. The legislation includes a number of highly innovative provisions, including those supported by ITIF and others, including ones that would create a National Innovation and Competitiveness Strategy for the United States, facilitate academic technology transfer and commercialization of university research, fund advanced manufacturing research and development, provide federal loan guarantees for innovative technologies in manufacturing, and provide NSF grants in support of post-doctoral fellowship programs in STEM fields. Moreover, the legislation keeps funding for key research agencies on a doubling path.

We urge the U.S. House of Representatives tomorrow morning to pass this vital, bipartisan legislation to invest in American innovation through science and technology R&D in order to enhance the competitive position of the United States. Putting U.S. innovative competitiveness on a more solid footing for the future would be a legacy of which the 111th Congress could be particularly proud.

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About the author

Stephen Ezell is vice president, global innovation policy, at ITIF. He focuses on innovation policy as well as international competitiveness and trade policy issues. He is coauthor of Innovating in a Service-Driven Economy: Insights, Application, and Practice (Palgrave MacMillan, 2015) and Innovation Economics: The Race for Global Advantage (Yale, 2012). Ezell holds a B.S. from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.