Skip to main content
×
Home
  • Print publication year: 2014
  • Online publication date: August 2014

6 - Transforming U.S. Energy Innovation: How Do We Get There?

Summary

As we argued in Chapter 1, the United States and the world need a radical acceleration in the rate of energy technology innovation to meet the profound economic, environmental, and national security challenges that energy poses in the 21st century. If the U.S. government does not act now to improve the conditions for innovation in energy, even in times of budget stringency, it risks losing leadership in one of the key global industries of the future, and the world risks being unable to safely mitigate climate change and to reduce vulnerability to disruptions and conflicts – both domestic and international. Waiting is not an option.

The previous chapters of this book have laid out a broad agenda of policy changes that could help cause such a transformation in U.S. energy innovation. We believe that implementing these recommendations would bring the United States much closer to meeting the CASCADES criteria for an effective energy technology innovation strategy that we laid out in Chapter 1 – an approach that is comprehensive, adaptable, sustainable, agile, diversified, equitable, and strategic. In this chapter, we summarize the recommendations of the previous chapters, build on crosscutting themes that run through them all, and offer a preliminary discussion of the steps that would be needed to put the United States on the trajectory we suggest.

A Major Expansion in Energy Technology Innovation Investments, with More Stability and Better Targeting

As discussed in Chapter 2, the U.S. government should improve its approach to making decisions about energy RD&D investments in different technology areas. We have developed an approach to support these decisions and concluded that dramatically expanding the Department of Energy (DOE)'s investment in energy research, development, and demonstration (RD&D), focused on a broad portfolio of different energy technologies and stages of innovation, is justified by the expected social benefits.

Recommend this book

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this book to your organisation's collection.

Transforming US Energy Innovation
  • Online ISBN: 9781107338890
  • Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781107338890
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×
References
Anadon L.D. (2012). “Missions-oriented RD&D institutions in energy between 2000 and 2010: A comparative analysis of China, the United Kingdom, and the United States.” Research Policy, 41(10):1742–56.
ARISE2. (2013). ARISE2: Advancing Research In Science and Engineering2. American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Cambridge, Mass. Retrieved from (Accessed February 12, 2014).
Barradale M.J. (2010). “Impact of public policy uncertainty on renewable energy investment: Wind power and the production tax credit.” Energy Policy, 38:7698–709.
BESAC. (2007). “Directing matter and energy: Five challenges for science and the imagination.” Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Energy. Retrieved from (Accessed June 5, 2012).
Bonvillian W.B., & Van Atta R. (2011). “ARPA-E and DARPA: Applying the DARPA model to energy innovation.” Journal of Technology Transfer, 36:469–513.
CCNEWS. (2011). “15 state-owned enterprises laid the foundation stone of the future science and technology base at Changping District, Beijing.” CCNEWS. Retrieved from 14296353.html (Accessed April 20, 2011).
Chan G., & Anadon L.D. (2014). “A new method to support public decision-making on R&D: An energy example.” Submitted.
Choi H., & Anadon L.D. (2014). “The role of the complementary sector and its relationship with network formation and government policies in emerging sectors: The case of solar photovoltaics between 2001 and 2009.” Technology Forecasting and Social Change, 82:80–94.
Chu S. (2010). “China's clean energy successes represent a new “Sputnik moment” for America.” Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Energy (Speech at the National Press Club on November 29, 2010).
DOE. (2011). Quadrennial Technology Review. U.S. Department of Energy, Washington, D.C. Retrieved from (Accessed February 12, 2014).
DOE. (2013). “The history of solar PV.” Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. Retrieved from (Accessed February 12, 2014).
Duderstadt J., Muro M., Was G., Sarzynski A., McGrath R., Corradini M., Katehi L., & Shangraw R. (2009). Energy Discovery-Innovation Institutes: A Step Toward America's Energy Sustainability. Washington, D.C.: Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings Institution.
EIA. (2013). Annual Energy Outlook, AEO2013 Early Release Overview. Energy Information Administration. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Energy.
Gruebler A. (2012). “Grand designs: Historical patterns and future scenarios of energy technological change. Historical case studies of energy technology innovation. Case study in chapter on Policies for the Energy Technology Innovation System (ETIS). In Global Energy Assessment: Toward a Sustainable Future, pp. 39–53, edited by Gruebler A., Aguayo F., Gallagher K.S., Hekkert M., Jiang K., Mytelka L., Neij L., Nemet G., & Wilson C.. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Hoppmann J., Peters M., Schneider M., & Hoffmann V.H. (2013). “The two faces of market support – how deployment policies affect technological exploration and exploitation in the solar photovoltaic industry.” Research Policy, 42(4):989–1003.
Jiabao W. (2011). Report on the Work of the Government. Beijing, China: Xinhua News Agency.
Kempener R., Anadon L.D., & Condor J. (2010). “Governmental energy innovation investments, policies, and institutions in the major emerging economies: Brazil, Russia, India, Mexico, China, and South Africa.” Cambridge, Mass.: Energy Technology Innovation Policy Group, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.
Li Zheng J. (2011). “Coal in China.” Presentation at the 10th Annual Meeting of the Carbon Mitigation Initiative on Energy and Carbon Intensity in China, April 7, 2011. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University.
MIT. (2011). “Appendix 8A: Natural gas RD&D background.” In The Future of Natural Gas. Cambridge, Mass.: Report from the Energy Initiative, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Retrieved from (Accessed February 12, 2014).
Narayanamurti V., Anadon L.D., & Sagar A.D. (2009). “Institutions for energy innovation.” Issues in Science and Technology, Fall:57–64.
Narayanamurti V., Anadon L.D., Breetz H., Bunn M., Lee H., & Mielke E. (2011). Transforming the Energy Economy: Options for Accelerating the Commercialization of Advanced Energy Technologies. Report. Cambridge, Mass.: Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School. February. Retrieved from (Accessed February 12, 2014).
Narayanamurti V., Odumosu T., & Vinsel L. (2013). “RIP: The basic applied divide.” Issues in Science and Technology, XXIX (2, Winter).
NAS. (2005). Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, D.C.: National Academies of Sciences, National Academies Press.
Nemet G.F. (2009). “Interim monitoring of cost dynamics for publicly supported energy technologies.” Energy Policy, 37(3):825–35.
NRC. (2007). Prospective Evaluation of Applied Energy Research and Development at DOE (Phase Two). National Research Council. Washington, D.C. National Academies of Sciences, National Academies Press.
NRC. (2010). Limiting the Magnitude of Future Climate Change, p. 2. Washington D.C.: National Academies Press.
NRC. (2011). Renewable Fuel Standard: Potential Economic and Environmental Effects of U.S. Biofuel Policy, p. 271. National Research Council. Washington D.C.: National Academies Press.
PCAST. (2010). Report to the President on Accelerating the Pace of Change in Energy Technologies Through an Integrated Federal Energy Policy. Washington, D.C.: President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Executive Office of the President.
SEAB. (1995, February). Alternative Futures for the Department of Energy National Laboratories. Also known as “The Galvin Report.” Secretary of Energy Advisory Board. February. Retrieved from (Accessed February 12, 2014).
Zhi Q., Jun S., Peng R., & Anadon L.D. (2013, October). “The evolution of China's National Energy RD&D programs: The role of scientists in science and technology decision making.” Energy Policy, 61:1568–85.