Invitation: Public-Private Partnerships Powering Entrepreneurs and Innovators

WWC_page_C_v1The Program on America and the Global Economy and the Kauffman Foundation Present:

Public-Private Partnerships Powering Entrepreneurs and Innovators

Friday, November 1, 2013

2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Joseph and Claire Flom Auditorium, 6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

________________________________________________________________________         

Keynote:

Jacques Gansler, Roger C. Lipitz Chair in Public Policy and Private Enterprise, University of Maryland 

Panelists: 

Stephen Campbell, Economist, Economics Analysis Office, National Institute of Standards and Technology

Sujai Shivakumar, Deputy Director, Board on Science, Technology and Economic Policy, National Academies 

Sue Gander, Director, Environment, Energy & Transportation Division, National Governors Association Center for Best Practices

Moderator: 

Kent Hughes, Director, Program on America and the Global Economy

Public-private partnerships are a key source of funding and support for small business, public infrastructure, and aspiring entrepreneurs.  The Honorable Jacques Gansler, head of the Center for Public Policy and Private Enterprise at the University of Maryland will deliver the keynote address.  Dr. Gansler will be followed by an expert panel that will discuss how small businesses and public entities can partner together and assess the potential beneficial results of public private partnerships. 

Visit The Program on America and the Global Economy website for more information and to RSVP or send an email (acceptances only) to page@wilsoncenter.org

Please allow for routine security procedures when you arrive at the Center. A photo ID is required for entry.

The Center is located in the southeast wing of the Ronald Reagan Building, 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. The closest Metro station is Federal Triangle on the blue and orange lines. For detailed directions, please visit the Center’s website, www.wilsoncenter.org/directions

Invitation: Small Business is Big Business in America

WWC_page_C_v1

The Program on America and the Global Economy and the Kauffman Foundation Present:

Small Business is Big Business in America

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Joseph and Claire Flom Auditorium, 6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

________________________________________________________________________        

Keynote:

Jeanne Hulit, Acting Administrator, U.S. Small Business Administration

Panelists: 

Giovanni Coratolo, Vice President of Small Business Policy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce 

Robert Dilger, Senior Specialist in American National Government, Congressional Research Service

Sean Mallon, Senior Investment Director, Center for Innovative Technology

Shelly Mui-Lipnik, Senior Director of Tax and Financial Services, Biotechnology Industry Organization

Moderator: 

Kent Hughes, Public Policy Scholar and former Director, Program on America and the Global Economy

Continuing with our focus on the critical importance of entrepreneurship to the American economy; PAGE will host Jeanne Hulit, Acting Administrator of the SBA, to discuss public policies or private practices could increase the availability of small business financing in the future and innovative businesses that can drive future growth and prosperity. 

A light lunch will be provided from 12:30 – 1:00 p.m. 

Visit The Program on America and the Global Economy website for more information and to RSVP or send an email (acceptances only) to page@wilsoncenter.org

Please allow for routine security procedures when you arrive at the Center. A photo ID is required for entry.

The Center is located in the southeast wing of the Ronald Reagan Building, 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. The closest Metro station is Federal Triangle on the blue and orange lines. For detailed directions, please visit the Center’s website, www.wilsoncenter.org/directions

Reviving Entrepreneurship in America

hand drawn light landscape

There has been considerable concern regarding the current status of entrepreneurship in America. Overall, American entrepreneurs are producing less wealth than they have in the past. According to a recent study by Barclays, entrepreneurs in developing countries currently produce more wealth than their American counterparts. Demonstrating American entrepreneurs’ relative lack of entrepreneurial success, the same Barclays study determined that 21% of American millionaires cited business profits and sales as their primary source of wealth, as opposed to 58% of South American millionaires, 41% of European millionaires, 68% of South Africans millionaires, 48% of Middle Eastern millionaires, and 57% of East Asian millionaires.

The United States seems to engender a business environment that is favorable to entrepreneurial endeavors. For example, the world’s first venture capital industry was founded in America. In addition, American universities have ties to industries, creating additional opportunities for entrepreneurship. Open immigration policies have also historically contributed to entrepreneurial success in America. Even the American consumer culture is advantageous to developing entrepreneurial enterprises, as American consumers are generally willing and eager to test new products. However, today, entrepreneurs in America face certain challenges that largely result from burdensome taxing regulations and narrow immigration policies. Sam Graves, Chairman of the House Committee on Small Business, agrees. At a Committee hearing in May 2012 examining the state of entrepreneurship in America, Graves stated, “Entrepreneurship is a cornerstone of the American dream— having the freedom to take risks in order to chase your dreams and hopefully become successful and prosperous. The federal government should be encouraging this ingenuity which leads to job creation and economic growth, instead of impeding with more bureaucratic red tape.”

Regulatory red tape is especially detrimental to entrepreneurial opportunities, as federal taxes and regulations are disproportionally burdensome to small businesses. In the past four years, regulatory costs for small businesses have increased by almost $70 billion. The recession has also made it increasingly challenging for entrepreneurs and startups to find financial backing. In response, following the recession, crowdfunding has emerged as a prominent source of investment. As stated in the Crowdfunding Industry Report, “Crowdfunding shows to be a viable alternative for raising capital to fund small businesses and startups.” However, it is evident that regulations must be updated as crowdfunding and other novel forms of business financing continue to be embraced.

Realizing the significant role of immigrant entrepreneurs in America is imperative to revitalizing the U.S. economy. Over 40% of current Fortune 500 firms were founded by immigrants or their children. Furthermore, the National Venture Capital Association recently released a study demonstrating that companies backed by venture capitalists with at least one immigrant founder produce more IPOs and employment opportunities than they did before the recession. Congress is beginning to take notice of the value of immigrant entrepreneurs, proposing the possibility for “start-up visas.” This new class of visas would be available to foreign entrepreneurs who create at least five jobs through their business’s formation and also raise a minimum of $500,000 in investments from venture capitalists, angels, or other types of investors.

Clearly entrepreneurs are vital to the health of the American economy; entrepreneurs have consistently been integral to U.S. economic growth. In response to the struggling American economy, President Obama has placed significant emphasis on the concept of “middle-out” economics, which focuses on strengthening the middle class. As an added advantage, “middle-out” economics would simultaneously benefit American entrepreneurs. According to a study by the Kauffman Foundation, about 90% of American entrepreneurs are of middle or lower class origin. Therefore, if implemented effectively, Obama’s “middle-out” economic strategy would improve the state of American entrepreneurs, thereby strengthening the overall U.S. economy.

Posted by: Marjorie Baker

Sources: The Economist, House Committee on Small Business, Washington Post, Forbes, CNBC, the Kauffman Foundation, National Venture Capital Association

Internet Censorship vs. Copyright Infringement: a mini-case study in The Pirate Bay?

The Pirate Bay, a massively popular site where users can find links to pirated content via an internal search engine, has run up against copyright laws since its birth in 2003. Now, the file-sharing site’s founders Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm and Carl Lundström are paying the price as Sweden’s Supreme Court rejected an appeal to relieve them of prison sentences and a cumulative $6.7 million fine.

This case, ruled on October 29th, represents a wider controversy between groups which fear that shutting down sites like the Pirate Bay contribute to censorship and groups which see free file-sharing as an infringement on the copyrights of record companies. This ongoing battle between the camps have come to a head in recent years, infamously begun by the prosecution of Napster in 2001, in cases like the Pirate Bay. Are sites like these stealing from artists by not paying for the right to share the music? Should companies required to pay for the musical copyrights of songs when their websites only guide the user on where to download pirated files, or rely on peer-peer file-sharing?

In the case of the Pirate Bay, the legal victor has been the record companies. The site is now blocked in the UK, the Netherlands, Italy, and Finland, and the list is growing. According to several technology blogs, Neij, Svartholm, and Lundström feared that the United States was also looking to prosecute. In seeking to avoid litigation from the US, the site’s domain was changed from American-registered “.org” to Sweden’s “.se” in February of this year. Additionally, the site now utilizes the cloud to avoid detection from authorities. Though the legalities are debatable as to whether or not these methods prevent the Pirate Bay from seizure, it is likely that the United States will attempt to follow the international trend and ban the site. Historically, the US has been actively pursuing similar litigation suits with other popular torrent sites such as surfthechannel, which led to a website block and a jail sentence for piracy.

For better or for worse, the precedent set by the Supreme Court of Sweden in the Pirate Bay case reflects a support for record companies over expanding internet user freedoms. Nevertheless, the ongoing battle between copyright infringement codes and internet censorship promises to continue to play out in the years (and legal cases) ahead.

Posted by: Sophia Higgins

Sources: BBC, Time, PC World

Photo credit: The Pirate Bay Makes Itself Raid-Proof by Moving to the Cloud @ photostream courtesy of Flickr user methodshop.com

You Are Invited: Universities, High-skilled Immigration, and Regulatory Reform: Implications for America’s Economic Future

The Program on America and the Global Economy (PAGE) Presents:

 

Universities, High-skilled Immigration, and Regulatory Reform: Implications for America’s Economic Future

 

Friday, July 13, 2012

12:00 – 1:15 p.m.

B-369 Rayburn House Office Building

________________________________________________________________________        

Speakers:

 Joseph Kennedy, Former Chief Economist, US Department of Commerce

Karthick Ramakrishnan, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of California Riverside and Woodrow Wilson Center Fellow

 Jim Woodell, Director of Innovation and Technology Policy, Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities

 Kent Hughes, Director, Program on America and the Global Economy

 ________________________________________________________________________

 A panel of experts will discuss key aspects of the Start-Up Act with a special focus on the provisions designed to accelerate the commercialization of university research, the regulating of start-up companies, and the broadening of opportunities for temporary immigrants with post-graduate degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) to eventually quality for permanent residency visas.

________________________________________________________________________

Please RSVP acceptances only to page@wilsoncenter.org

 

 

Posted by: PAGE Staff

You Are Invited: The Start-Up Act 2.0 and American Innovation

The Program on America and the Global Economy Presents:

 The Start-Up Act 2.0 and American Innovation

 Thursday, June 28, 2012

9:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Joseph and Claire Flom Auditorium, 6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

 ________________________________________________________________________        

 Keynote:

 Senator Chris Coons, Delaware

 Panelists:

 Michael Waring, Executive Director, Federal Relations, The University of Michigan

 Joseph Kennedy, Former Chief Economist, U.S. Department of Commerce

 Peter Mueller, Director, Government Relations, Intel Corporation

 Moderator:

 Kent Hughes, Director, Program on America and the Global Economy

 ________________________________________________________________________

 Senator Chris Coons is part of a bipartisan group of Senators that recently introduced the Startup Act 2.0 in the Senate.  He will provide a keynote address on the Act followed by a panel discussion that will focus on key aspects of the Start-Up Act 2.0.  There will be a special focus on the provisions designed to accelerate the commercialization of university research, the broadening of opportunities for temporary immigrants with post-graduate degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) for visas for permanent residency, and the proposal to assess the impact of regulations.

________________________________________________________________________

 

Please RSVP acceptances only to page@wilsoncenter.org

Directions to the Wilson Center: www.wilsoncenter.org/directions

Immigration Lessons From Our Northern Neighbor?

True or False: Canada has a higher foreign-born population, per capita, than the United States?  Surprisingly, it’s true and it speaks to the lessons the U.S. might learn on how to integrate immigrants into their economies.

While the United States has long had the image around the world as the refuge of the “tired, poor, and huddled masses yearning”, its increasingly arcane and complex immigration system is coming under fire as inefficient in a global economy where labor, just as much as capital, is flowing freely across borders.  More business leaders and policymakers are arguing that immigrants, especially those with in demand skills, are needed to fuel economic growth.

Canada has already caught on to this trend and is taking advantage of gaps in the American system.  Look no further than canadavisa.com, where one of the main links is for foreigners in America on a H1-B or temporary work visa and how they can be fast tracked for Canadian immigration.  Canada, of course offers many of the same things to immigrants the U.S. does: a high standard of living, an advanced economy, rule of law, peace and safety.  In addition, Canada has made a concerted effort to use immigration to directly fill gaps in its labor force, something the US has yet to do.  To determine who is granted a permanent visa, Canada has a simple point system that awards points for things like level of education, occupational skills, language ability, and others factors relevant to productivity.  Only 22% of its immigration was for family reasons (i.e. reuniting mothers with children, brothers with sisters, etc.) while about two thirds of all permanent visas were granted for economic reasons.  In the U.S., the inverse is true: Only 13% of green cards last year were doled out for economic reasons, while two-thirds were for family reunions.

The StartUp Act 2.0, currently being deliberated in both houses of Congress, contains provisions that shift the immigration paradigm in the U.S. towards a more economic view.  The Act would create a new visa for immigrants who graduate from U.S. universities with a master’s degree or doctorate in STEM fields and also create an entrepreneur’s visa to enable immigrants with capital to start businesses and create jobs in the U,S,, rather than returning home to do it.

The U.S. faces both demographic changes (aging and shrinking labor force) and economic forces (e.g. a shortage of STEM workers) that can be solved by a smart immigration policy.  As of now, the US is educating and accepting intelligent and hard-working immigrants temporarily, who are then forced to either return home or go to a country like Canada, where they create jobs and contribute to growth.

Posted by: Sean Norris

Sources: CNN, The Christian Science Monitor, The Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette

Photo Credit: Citizenship Ceremony courtesy of flickr user mars_discovery_district