Search Results: AI

House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair McMorris Rodgers Releases Framework for NIH Reform

Earlier this month, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), in partnership with the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education (LHHS) Chair Robert Aderholt (R-AL), released a framework outlining potential reforms for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). A one-pager on the framework can be found here as well as an opinion piece written by Chairs McMorris Rodgers and Aderholt. Chair McMorris Rodgers has also announced her intent to not seek re-election this November. The framework comes after a series of recommendations, including Senator Bill Cassidy’s (R-LA) white paper on NIH reform released in May (see previous COSSA coverage) and…

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New Resources Detail Successes of DOJ Research Investments

In 2023, the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) within the Department of Justice (DOJ) launched a new website where visitors can obtain information on awards OJP has made to grantees. The main feature is a database that allows one to search for projects dating back to 2021. OJP is the organizational home for the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), both of whose grants can also be found in the database.  More recently, OJP produced a video to help visitors navigate the new award site. Additional features of the site include a compilation of success stories stemming from OJP investment and a Grantee…

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Bipartisan Senate AI Working Group Releases Blueprint on AI Policy

The Bipartisan Senate Artificial Intelligence (AI) Working Group led by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senator Mike Rounds, Senator Martin Heinrich, and Senator Todd Young, recently released a report, Driving U.S. Innovation in Artificial Intelligence: A Roadmap for Artificial Intelligence Policy in the United States Senate. As AI becomes a topical issue in virtually all aspects of life, the Senate working group held a series of forums dedicated to understanding the benefits and detriments of potential uses of AI technology prior to the release of this report (see COSSA’s previous coverage on AI). The report recommends committees continue to collaborate on…

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NIMH Releases RFI on Improving Research Frameworks on Studying Racism on Brain and Behavioral Health

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) released a request for information (RFI) seeking input on ways to improve research frameworks on studying racism on brain and behavioral health. The RFI seeks input on identifying and addressing gaps in the impact of structural racism on brain, cognitive, and behavioral function, and the role of structural and systemic racism on the conduct of brain and behavioral health research. Comments will be accepted through June 14, 2024. Submissions can be made here. 

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PCAST Releases Report on Supercharging Research: Harnessing AI to Meet Global Challenges

The President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) announced a new report on Supercharging Research: Harnessing Artificial Intelligence (AI) to Meet Global Challenges. The report was developed in response to President Biden’s Executive Order on the Safe, Secure, Trustworthy Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence (see previous COSSA coverage) and explores the positive and negative impacts of AI technologies. PCAST emphasizes the importance of AI being used as a tool, not a replacement, for workers. PCAST included the following recommendations for the Biden Administration in the report:  The full report can be viewed here in addition to PCAST’s letter to the President and the Executive Summary of…

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NIAID Accepting Comments on New Strategic Plan

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), within the National Institutes of Health, is accepting public feedback on proposed updates to its Strategic Plan. The Strategic Plan would prioritize five key research topics in biomedical research, but NIAID also invites comments and suggestions on other themes: diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA); Women’s Health; health disparities; research inclusivity; global health; infrastructure and research facilities; data science and sharing; and workforce training. Responses are due to NIAIDStrategicPlanRFI@niaid.nih.gov in Word or PDF form by May 27. A full listing of the Request for Information can be found here.

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NIJ Issues RFI on the Uses of AI in the Criminal Justice System

The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) housed within the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) in the Department of Justice (DOJ) has issued a request for information (RFI) on the future uses of artificial intelligence (AI) in the criminal justice system. In response to the Safe, Secure, and Trustworthy Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence Executive Order released by the Biden Administration in October 2023 (see previous COSSA coverage), NIJ seeks to understand the potential impacts of AI use in the criminal justice system to potentially influence a future report on the topic. Comments are requested by May 28 and should be emailed to mark.greene2@usdoj.gov. 

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Congress Begins FY 2025 Budget Process with newly elected House Appropriations Full Committee Chair, Rep. Tom Cole

With the fiscal year (FY) 2024 budget finalized (previously reported by COSSA), Congress is looking ahead to FY 2025. The process has begun for FY 2025 with the Presidential Budget Request (see COSSA’s in-depth analysis), which had a delayed release of March 11. The Appropriations subcommittees in both chambers have also begun scheduling oversight budget hearings with the heads of Federal Agencies in preparation of drafting their respective bills for the FY 2025 budget. As a reminder, the fiscal year for 2025 will begin October 1, 2024, requiring Congress to have finalized the budget by this date unless a continuing…

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Rep. Granger Stepping Down Early from Appropriations Chair

Earlier this year, Representative Kay Granger (R-TX) announced that she would not be seeking reelection in November for the House of Representatives. Representative Granger was elected to the House of Representatives in 1996 and was elected to her leadership role on the Appropriations Committee in 2018 (see previous COSSA coverage). On March 22, Representative Granger announced her intent to step down as Chair of the House Appropriations committee early and requested the GOP, the current majority in the House, elect a new Chair to finish out the 118th Congress. With the budget for fiscal year (FY) 2024 completed (see COSSA’s analysis…

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Bipartisan Task Force on AI Launched

On February 20, a bipartisan Task Force on Artificial Intelligence (AI) was launched by Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-LA) and Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), signaling a step towards addressing the legislative challenges posed by the rapid advancement of AI technologies. Chaired by Representative Jay Obernolte (R-CA) and co-chaired by Representative Ted Lieu (D-CA), the Task Force comprises 24 members from both parties, charged with producing a comprehensive report that includes guiding principles, recommendations, and policy proposals on AI. This initiative aims to bridge the legislative gap in AI regulation, ensuring the U.S. harnesses the benefits of AI while mitigating…

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NSF Launches New National AI Research Resource Pilot

On January 24, the National Science Foundation (NSF), in collaboration with various agencies, launched the National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource (NAIRR) pilot. This initiative takes a first step towards creating a research infrastructure aimed at both strengthening and democratizing access to the essential resources required for responsible AI discovery and innovation. The NAIRR pilot is designed to equip U.S.-based researchers and educators with access to advanced computing power, extensive datasets, sophisticated models, cutting-edge software, and comprehensive training and support. By fostering collaboration across academia, industry, the nonprofit sector, and government, the program intends to utilize cross-sector partnerships. According to NSF,…

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Congressional Leaders Seek Clarity and Commitment in NIST AI Safety Research Funding

A bipartisan group of Congressional leaders has reached out to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) seeking clarity and commitment on the funding processes and research quality of the newly established Artificial Intelligence Safety Institute (AISI). The group, led by House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (R-OK) and Ranking Member Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) sent a letter to the NIST Director to address concerns. Given the nascent and complex nature of AI safety research, the letter highlights the issues currently plaguing the field, including self-referential findings, lack of rigorous critique, and a general disagreement over scope, taxonomies, and…

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Tess deBlanc-Knowles Appointed as Special Assistant to the Director for AI at NSF

On December 12, the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced the appointment of Tess deBlanc-Knowles as the new Special Assistant to the Director for Artificial Intelligence. Alongside this role, she’ll continue her duties within NSF’s Directorate for Technology, Innovation, and Partnerships as Strategic Advisor for Technology Policy and Strategy. As a former OSTP Senior Policy Advisor, deBlanc-Knowles led policy efforts to strengthen the nation’s AI innovation by co-chairing the National AI Research Resource Task Force, oversaw the the National AI Research and Development Strategic Plan: 2023 Update and led the process in crafting the nation’s first strategy to advance privacy-enhancing technologies. Now, as the lead in the…

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Coalition Letter for Supplemental Funding to Advance National and Economic Security and Maintain U.S. Competitiveness

Read the letter.

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As Congress Prepares for Holiday Recess, FY24 Budget Remains Uncertain

As the year comes to an end, Congress remains no closer to finding a resolution to the fiscal year (FY) 2024 appropriations process. As previously reported by COSSA, Congress passed a continuing resolution (CR) to extend the appropriations deadline to after the new year. Early last week, Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) and Appropriations Chair Patty Murray (D-WA) unveiled a supplemental funding bill that would provide $110.5 billion of economic and humanitarian aid to Israel and Ukraine, Taiwan and Indo-Pacific allies and funding to combat fentanyl trafficking and process migrants crossing the U.S. southern border. The bill was halted…

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House Passes Deterrent Act Aimed to Tighten Foreign Financial Contribution Regulations

The House of Representatives recently passed the Defending Education Transparency and Ending Rogue Regimes Engaging in Nefarious Transactions (DETERRENT) Act. This legislation aims to tighten regulations on foreign financial contributions to American universities and academics. The act reflects growing concerns about foreign influence in American higher education and research sectors. One of the act’s central features is the reduction of the reporting threshold for foreign funding. Previously set at $250,000, the threshold would now be $50,000 for most countries, with a zero threshold for nations deemed as “countries of concern,” including China and Iran. This change aims to increase transparency…

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NSF Announces EducateAI for Nationwide AI Education

The National Science Foundation (NSF) launched EducateAI, an initiative aimed at enhancing artificial intelligence (AI) education across the United States. This program targets a broad audience, from K-12 to graduate students and adults seeking formal AI training. The initiative’s core objective is to empower educators and students with essential AI knowledge and skills, fostering an inclusive environment for learning about AI technology. The initiative’s first step involves publishing the EducateAI Dear Colleague Letter, calling for proposals that advance inclusive computing education and integrate innovative AI-focused curricula. Funded by NSF’s CISE and STEM Education directorates, the call for proposals seeks to develop comprehensive…

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OMB Seeks Public Comment on AI Governance Memorandum

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) announced an open call for public comment on draft memorandum “Advancing Governance, Innovation, and Risk Management for Agency Use of Artificial Intelligence (AI).” This initiative seeks to establish new requirements for federal agencies in AI governance, innovation, and risk management. The proposed memorandum is designed to direct agencies towards adopting specific minimum risk management practices, particularly for AI applications that could impact public safety and individual rights. OMB encourages feedback on various aspects, such as recommending roles and responsibilities for Chief AI Officers across federal agencies, effective coordination methods for AI Governance Bodies,…

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Appropriations Halted as House Searches for New Speaker, Outcome Uncertain

As previously reported by COSSA, the Congressional Appropriations deadline has been extended to November 17 with a short-term continuing resolution (CR). Following the conclusion of this deal, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) was ousted from his position in a 216-210 vote, leaving the House without leadership and unable to continue legislative business. This was an unprecedented decision made by Congress and a direct result from concessions made by McCarthy while running for the position earlier this year (see previous COSSA coverage). Following a two-week vacancy, on October 17, the House held a vote to elect a new Speaker. Representative Jim Jordan…

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AAU Launches “Fund American Science” Campaign

The Association of American Universities (AAU) has launched a new campaign titled, “Fund American Science: Congress Must Act Now to Fund the CHIPS and Science Act” in response to the insufficient funding for the science portion of the CHIPS and Science Act (see previous COSSA coverage). The AAU stresses that budget constraints and disagreements in Congress pose further threats to catching up to CHIPS and Science’s funding goals. This campaign calls on Congress to fully fund the amounts that CHIPS and Science authorized for the Department of Energy (DOE)’s Office of Science, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the National…

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