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November 6, 2013

Trade
What's Behind Obama’s Push to Attract Foreign Businesses?

Last week the Obama administration hosted the first-ever national summit showcasing the United States as an attractive place to do business, part of a newish initiative called SelectUSA. The event wa…

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at the SelectUSA 2013 Investment Summit in Washington

October 16, 2013

Education
What Does Adult Mediocrity Mean for U.S. Competitiveness? It's Complicated

It is old news that average American student performance is mediocre on international tests. With the recent release of the OECD’s first survey of adult skills, we now know that American adults conti…

Thomas Michel, a professor at Harvard Medical School, waits for the start of the 360th Commencement Exercises at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts May 26, 2011. (Brian Snyder/Courtesy Reuters)

September 3, 2013

Education
Making Colleges Accountable: One Step Forward, But More to Go

The most ambitious part of President Obama’s new college accountability plan unveiled in August—tying the eligibility of schools for federal student aid to demonstrated results in preparing students …

College students take their seats at a diploma ceremony (Brian Snyder/Reuters).

August 15, 2013

Infrastructure
Transportation: Overhyped “Can-Do” States and P3s

Advocates for more U.S. transportation spending are accustomed to discouraging news. So it is understandable they would claim a resounding victory when a handful of (small) “can-do” states manage to …

A police vehicle escorts visitors through one of two tunnels that will replace a stretch of California's Highway 1 near Pacifica, California on March 25, 2013 (Robert Galbraith/Courtesy Reuters).

May 13, 2013

Education
The U.S. Demographic “Advantage” Reconsidered

In the litany of Washington debates about current and future U.S. economic competitiveness, demographics is consistently placed on the advantage side of the U.S. competitiveness ledger. A broad view …

President Obama holds up a baby after speaking in Las Vegas (Larry Downing/Courtesy Reuters).

March 25, 2013

Infrastructure
The Sales Tax: The New Way to Fund Transportation?

Engineers have been browbeating U.S. policymakers about the dire state of the country’s infrastructure for years. This year is no different. Last week the American Society of Civil Engineers gave U.S…

Cars wait in a traffic jam in New York City (Mike Segar/Courtesy Reuters).

February 20, 2013

Education
The Critical Missing Education Piece: Universal Pre-K

President Obama’s call in last week’s State of the Union address for high-quality pre-kindergarten education for all American children is long overdue. The rest of the developed world is well ahead …

Pre-school graduation (Paul Schultz/Flickr).

February 1, 2013

Education
Education: Do International Test Scores Matter?

We’ve all seen the headlines: American students are far from stellar performers on international tests. Whether it’s the OECD’s oft-cited gold-standard PISA test on math and reading, the TIMSS test o…

A preschooler on his first day of school in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (Bazuki Muhammad/Courtesy Reuters).

October 12, 2012

Trade
Expensive and Long U.S. Campaigns: A Competitive Disadvantage?

Of the competitive disadvantages faced by the United States, its democratic system is not supposed to be one of them. Quite the opposite. The stability of the U.S. democratic process and the trusted …

A member of the audience yawns behind a copy of her program at the Franklin County Lincoln Day Dinner, where U.S. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney delivered remarks (Jonathan Ernst/Courtesy Reuters).

March 4, 2019

India
Bright Future? Fourth Annual Review of Solar Scale-Up in India

This guest post is co-authored by Sarang Shidore, a visiting scholar at the LBJ School at the University of Texas at Austin, and Joshua Busby, associate professor of public affairs at the Robert S. S…

An employee works at a solar cell production line at Jupiter Solar Power Limited (JSPL) plant in Baddi, in the northern state of Himachal Pradesh, India May 29, 2017.