Tag Archives: STAA

Don’t Fear Artificial Intelligence, Plan for It

By Timothy Persons, GAO’s Chief Scientist and Managing Director of GAO’s Science, Technology Assessment, and Analytics team. Since the 1968 release of the film, 2001: A Space Odyssey, artificial intelligence (AI) has captured our imagination, inspiring both wonder and fear. … Continue reading

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The Tech Behind COVID-19 Contact Tracing

Public health officials are working to contain the spread of COVID-19, in part by using contact tracing applications to help reduce transmission rates. Contact tracing identifies infected individuals and notifies their “contacts”—i.e., all the people to whom they may have … Continue reading

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The Role and Risk of Herd Immunity When It Comes to COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, the concept of herd immunity is coming into sharper focus. But with limited information available on critical aspects of COVID-19, the concept remains a murky one. Today’s WatchBlog looks at our recent Spotlight on the … Continue reading

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Disease modeling: How Math Can Help In A Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought new attention to models of infectious disease. These models are critical tools that scientists—including those from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)—use to anticipate health care needs and explore options for responding to … Continue reading

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Quantum Technology Leaping Toward Reality

Quantum physics is a tough subject to study. Even revered physicist Richard Feynman once wrote that even “physics has given up” trying to fully understand it. But that does not mean human ingenuity cannot harness the mysteries of quantum physics … Continue reading

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The Reward and Risk of Expediting COVID-19 Testing and Vaccine Development

U.S. scientists are working quickly to develop new tests and vaccines to identify and combat COVID-19. They have already developed 3 kinds of tests and begun development on numerous potential vaccines. Developing a new test or vaccine, however, is a … Continue reading

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The Coronavirus Response: Lessons Learned from The Past

The novel coronavirus, COVID-19, is quickly challenging Americans to rethink every aspect of our daily lives. And while this particular virus is new, GAO has issued reports and congressional testimonies covering several similar public health challenges and emergency federal aid … Continue reading

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How Prepared Are We for a Pandemic?

The outbreak and spread of COVID-19 from China to the U.S. shores has brought the term coronavirus into daily usage and raised the question “How prepared are we for a pandemic?” Today’s WatchBlog explores GAO work looking at pandemic preparedness, … Continue reading

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Could AI Help Create New Medicines?

Developing and bringing a new drug to market is a lengthy and expensive process. Only about 1 in 10,000 chemical compounds that are tested makes it through the research and development pipeline and is approved by the FDA. This process … Continue reading

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Our Guide to Tech Readiness

The development of cutting-edge technologies is critical to many of the government’s most costly acquisition projects, including new weapons, satellites, nuclear facilities, and homeland security systems. The federal government spends billions of dollars acquiring these technologies. However, these technologies can … Continue reading

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