Press Releases and Statements

Sensenbrenner Receives Response from Holdren on Dual Use Research Policy

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Washington, April 17, 2012 | Amanda Infield (202-225-5101) | comments
Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner today released a response from Dr. Holdren, Director of the Office of Science and Technology policy.

This letter is a response to Sensenbrenner's letter to the White House regarding the Administration’s safeguards for dual use research, and raised concerns that the current ad hoc approach was inadequate to balance the priorities of national security and the free flow of academic ideas. In his letter, he also noted that if circumstances pose a legitimate threat to global health, the government needs a review system that is capable of identifying and preventing the spread of dangerous research, ideally before the research is conducted. Earlier this month, the U.S. government released new policy guidelines for dual use research.

Please see this comment from Congressman Sensenbrenner on Dr. Holdren's response:

“In his response, Dr. Holdren wrote that, until now, the United States government has “not needed to have a system in place” for restricting dissemination of dual use research or concern because this is the first time the NSABB recommended restricting publication.  I believe the Administration needs to be more proactive than that and prepare for possible threats before they occur.  The new policy is a good, if belated, first step, and I will be watching its implementation closely.”

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