The FAS Congressional Science Policy Initiative (CSPI) aims to fill a critical gap in the nation’s policymaking process: the relative absence of the scientific community in informing federal policy. The scientific community’s input is vital, particularly to the work of lawmakers who, unlike executive branch agencies, tend to lack in-house scientific expertise.
CSPI will therefore help to create a network of scientists, engineers, and technologists who will bring their expertise to bear in order to inform the work of lawmakers and their staff on a range of issues, including but not limited to:
- Engaging policy makers on the value of scientific research and its role in economic competitiveness.
- Considering the benefits of emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and synthetic biology, while addressing their risks.
- Addressing the risks from nuclear weapons and nuclear weapon-usable materials through arms control, nonproliferation and disarmament.
CSPI was established on three guiding principles to help inject science into the national discourse:
Crowdsourcing questions for Congressional members ensures the public discourse on science and technology is informed.
Providing oversight of the Executive Branch and serving as a liaison of scientific and evidence-based research for upcoming and pending legislation.
Creating sustaining relationships between scientists and Congressional offices through direct engagement: face-to-face meetings, phone calls, etc.
The Congressional Science Policy Initiative is made possible by the generosity of Schmidt Futures and the FAS donor network.