Category Archives: Science and Technology

How Chernobyl Jump-Started the Global Nuclear Safety Regime

Have you been catching up on all the Emmy-nominated shows before the big event next Sunday, September 22? With the HBO miniseries “Chernobyl” nominated for 19 Emmy awards this year, we took the opportunity to look back at some of … Continue reading

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Artificial Intelligence: Still a Long Way from Judgment Day

The 1991 sci-fi film Terminator 2 predicted that artificial intelligence (AI) software known as Skynet would become self-aware on August 29, 1997, and rapidly take over the world. Today, even as we celebrate avoiding such an extreme outcome for 22 … Continue reading

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Trucking Shifts into the Future

Will there come a day when the big rig in the lane next to you doesn’t have a driver? Trucks that have some automated features—or that even drive themselves—are on the horizon, and they have the potential to improve efficiency … Continue reading

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Federal Government Contracting for Fiscal Year 2018 (infographic)

With tax season over, now is a good time to look at how the government uses your tax dollars. About 40% of the government’s discretionary spending goes to contracts for goods and services covering everything from health care to hand … Continue reading

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Building Capacity in Science & Technology

Here’s some news that’s generating excitement among the nerds here at GAO. (Which, if we’re being honest, is most of us.) Our new science and technology team officially has a plan to rapidly expand the rigorous, nonpartisan analysis it provides … Continue reading

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Cuppa GAO: Transformational Technology

Scientific and technological innovation is an important component of U.S. economic competitiveness and prosperity. Federal agencies supported these innovations—many of which have resulted in new or significantly enhanced technologies—by funding research to the tune of nearly $70 billion in FY17. These … Continue reading

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The Nation’s Biodefense

Biological agents like anthrax have the potential to kill or injure masses of people or have a catastrophic impact on the economy. These agents could emerge naturally or be intentional acts of war or terrorism. So, how does the federal … Continue reading

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Women in Tech

Research has shown that diversity brings new information and perspectives to a group, leading to better decision-making. But women comprise less than a quarter of the tech workforce, despite the fact that the tech sector continues to grow. Why? And … Continue reading

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DOE’s Investments in Research and Development

The Department of Energy invested $7.36 billion in thousands of civilian research and development projects in 2015—supporting R&D in areas such as energy efficiency, renewable energy, and the electricity grid. With this funding, researchers at national laboratories, universities, and private … Continue reading

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Here Comes the Sun

Rooftop solar panels, smart thermostats, residential batteries, and other tech may help you manage your energy use, generate electricity, and lower your utility bills. For example, homeowners can use solar systems to generate clean electricity to power their home and … Continue reading

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