RealClearPublicAffairs is a new series of sponsored curation designed to provide coverage of important and trending public policy issues. it's a deep dive into curated content that we think will engage our audience and deepen their understanding of topical concerns facing our nation's decisionmakers.

Entrepreneurship is the process of bringing an idea to life and sharing it in the marketplace. Entrepreneurship creates value for society, thereby increasing living standards and quality of life. It creates economic independence, wealth, and jobs. The changing nature of work, including the online platform economy, has implications for both economic independence and entrepreneurship. 
 
While the entrepreneurship rate has picked back up again recently, it was weighed down for many years during the aftermath of the Great Recession. This decline in entrepreneurship reduces productivity, economic growth, wages, and living standards. Simply put: A decline in entrepreneurship means a decline in quality of life for Americans. A new economic model that infuses entrepreneurship into the economy and removes barriers to starting and growing businesses is needed. Targeting barriers to economic competition such as non-compete clauses, occupational licensing, broad patents, and other rent-seeking measures can help boost the level of new firms.
 
There is a racial entrepreneurship gap where entrepreneurs of color remain underrepresented. Access to capital, the lifeblood of entrepreneurship, is one of the biggest obstacles facing minority-owned startups. While an influx of women into the labor force has ushered in significant gains in economic growth and worker productivity, fewer women have become entrepreneurs, meaning their potential contributions to job creation, innovation, and economic growth have not been realized.
 
The principal sources of innovation and job creation are new, young, and growing companies, responsible for nearly all of the net new job creation in the U.S. economy. Research suggests that policymakers seeking to promote entrepreneurship in their city or state turn from past strategies and embrace a new approach that puts entrepreneurs at the center.
 
To increase entrepreneurship, the traditional education system must be reexamined and reoriented to prepare students for the future of learning. Leaders across the country are reimagining school to foster innovation, entrepreneurship, and collaboration, yet only some students are benefiting. Cutting edge education reforms must be expanded to prepare all students to succeed as entrepreneurs. 
 
Americans have the fundamental right to turn an idea into an economic reality, regardless of who they are or where they're from, with zero barriers in the way.

RealClearPublicAffairs is a new series of sponsored curation designed to provide coverage of important and trending public policy issues. More About

The Looming Student Loan Default Crisis is Worse Than We Thought

Bottom Line: The looming student loan debt crisis provides support for robust efforts to regulate the for-profit sector, to improve degree attainment and promote income-contingent loan repaym

How to Cook Up a Vibrant Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

Bottom Line: To better understand what contributes to vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystems, Kauffman researchers examined 355 U.S. metropolitan areas and found that some factors have a...

The Dos and Don'ts of Local Entrepreneurship Promotion

Bottom Line: The principal sources of innovation and job creation are new, young, and growing companies, responsible for nearly all of the net new job creation in the U.S. economy. R...

Women Entrepreneurs are Key to Accelerating Growth

Bottom Line: The influx of women into the labor force has ushered in significant gains in economic growth and worker productivity. Yet, fewer women have become entrepreneurs, meaning...

Electronic cigarettes were a product a long time in the making, with many architects. The concept dates in a serious way to the 1920s; the first patents were issued to American inventor Henry A. Gilbert in the mid-1960s; in the late 1990s, former NASA engineer and microprocessor pioneer Phil Ray experimented with a new, non-smoking technology. Although Ray’s efforts didn’t go anywhere commercially, they did deliver the word “vape” to the lexicon.

The big breakthrough arrived 15 years ago. It was achieved by a Chinese chemist named Hon Lik, whose motivations were a combination of intellectual curiosity and entrepreneurial rewards -- and human welfare. Cigarette smoking had hastened his father’s death. Hon Lik had a heavy tobacco habit himself, and was experiment with ways to quit.

Public health is the dominant underlying context for the arrival of e-cigarettes. In the United States alone, they are credited with helping millions of people quit or reduce smoking cigarettes. According to a recent report from Public Health England, e-cigarettes are currently the most popular stop-smoking aid in England. American smoking rates continue to decline as well, according to the National Health Interview Survey, with the biggest drop among young adults.

A significant role in this success story is played by e-cigarettes, a product measurably safer than combustible cigarettes. Yet, the long and sometimes partisan tobacco wars took its toll on the U.S. media, which retains a residual skepticism of new products in the overall inhaling marketplace. The same is true among the American public. Two-thirds of adults think vaping is equally or more dangerous than smoking, for instance, a belief unsupported by the best available evidence.

This erroneous perception suggests a knowledge gap, one which these curated pages seek to address. Reasonable minds can differ on the public policy questions raised by vaping. What restrictions on market e-cigarettes are reasonable? Which are counterproductive? How can the government and the private sector maximize the health benefits of weaning smokers off tobacco without marketing vaping to young people who were non-smokers to begin with? The aim of these curated pages to expose those who think critically to viewpoints they might otherwise not see –to give readers information necessary for informed judgments.

RealClearPublicAffairs is a new series of sponsored curation designed to provide coverage of important and trending public policy issues. More About

A Randomized Trial of E-Cigarettes Versus Nicotine-Replacement Therapy

Bottom Line: A trial evaluated the 1-year efficacy of refillable e-cigarettes as compared with nicotine replacement when provided to adults seeking help to quit smoking and combined ...

Cross-Sectional E-Cigarette Findings From the ITC Project

Bottom Line: The strength and implementation of regulatory policies may shape the behavior of Nicotine Vapor Products (NVPs) use by current and former smokers. This paper presents up...

Vaping and the Law: Comparing Legislation Across Canada

Bottom Line: To avoid constitutional scrutiny and future litigation, e-cigarette legislation should not erect irrational or arbitrary legal barriers that unnecessarily impede or inhi...

E-Cigarette Use Strongly Associated with Recent Smoking Cessation in Greece

Bottom Line: Statistically significant associations were observed between e-cigarette use and recent smoking cessation in Greece. The associations were stronger for recent (≤3 years)...

Free speech, freedom of association, viewpoint diversity, and open inquiry--these principles are essential to the educational mission of the university, and to the health of civil society.

RealClear's Free Speech on Campus page is designed to be the leading online forum where conversation on these critical issues can take place.

In 1974, Yale University published a document officially titled the Report on the Committee of Free Expression at Yale. Widely known as the Woodward Report, after its chairman C. Vann Woodward, it contained this unequivocal line:

“The history of intellectual growth and discovery clearly demonstrates the need for unfettered freedom, the right to think the unthinkable, discuss the unmentionable, and challenge the unchallengeable.”

This was not a new insight. Although he died 150 years before the American Revolution, Francis Bacon hit unerringly on the requirements of a genuine education: reading, writing, and debate. Today, however, college campuses in the United States and much of the western world are replacing debate with coerced conformity. 

The result is an environment that once would have been considered an anathema to the very purpose of higher education: Rigorous exchanges of competing ideas have been replaced by university speech codes, constricted speech zones, commencement speaker “disinvitations,” and “no-platforming,” which is university-speak for the heckler’s veto.

Some institutions are pushing back against this trend. As 2018 came to a close, 54 U.S. institutions of higher learning have signed the so-called “Chicago Statement” guaranteeing freedom of speech on campus. That leaves nearly 1,600 schools that haven’t, including, ironically, Yale.

A majority of college students, according to a seminal Brookings Institution survey, do not fully support the precepts of the First Amendment; and one-fifth of them believe it’s acceptable to use physical force to silence a speaker who is making “offensive and hurtful statements.”

These students are tomorrow’s judges, jurors, legislators, journalists, and teachers. Operating under the conviction that freedom of speech is essential to the educational mission of the university, and ultimately to the survival of civil society, this page is designed to provide a platform for conversation on this critical topic.

RealClearPublicAffairs is a new series of sponsored curation designed to provide coverage of important and trending public policy issues. More About

Proxy Advisor firm recommendations are important tools for institutional investors, particularly passive investors with hundreds or thousands of proxy shareholder votes to submit annually and an increasing pressure to reduce fees for clients. Despite having little regulatory authority, they have succeeded in gaining an outsized role in our corporate governance system, with huge influence over the future of America’s public companies and their shareholders.

Despite this influence, proxy firms have been criticized on a number of other issues, including: 

  • Conflicts of interest that can impact the objectivity of voting recommendations made to institutional investors. 

  • A one-size-fits-all approach to voting recommendations that ignores the unique characteristics and operations of individual companies. 

  • A lack of willingness to constructively engage with companies, particularly small and midsize companies that are disproportionately impacted by proxy advisory firms. 

  • A lack of transparency throughout the research and development of voting recommendations. 

  • Frequent and significant errors in analysis and an unwillingness to address errors.

In addition to fiduciary concerns, these issues are cited as a hurdle by businesses to going and staying public. Over the last 20 years, the number of public companies in the U.S. has fallen by roughly half. This jeopardizes economic growth and limits investment opportunities for retail investors who rarely have the chance to invest in innovative private companies. 

Recently these problems with the proxy advisor industry have garnered the attention of U.S. and global regulators, Republican and Democrat members of Congress, institutional investors, academics, and others.

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At the dawn of the Information Age, Harvard professor Clayton M. Christiansen coined the phrase “disruptive technologies” (which he later altered to “disruptive innovations”) to describe how new, more advanced products or services typically take root at the bottom of the market before moving relentlessly upmarket until they displace the competition.

Christiansen and his colleagues initially viewed the problem facing existing businesses as management challenges for executives. But the ensuing decades have shown that technological applications – especially those controlled by the biggest tech companies which reign supreme over their respective primary markets and are gaining position in secondary markets – impact every aspect of modern life. 

Five of those tech enterprises — Google, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Facebook — are among the largest corporations in the world. They have unleashed myriad innovations benefitting billions of people while remaking the world economy.

Creating opportunity on such a vast scale did more than disturb the existing order of older industries, however. The Big 5 companies have transformed everything they touch.

Their innovations have prompted sweeping societal changes as well, prompting understandable anxieties about loss of privacy, the future of free speech, the nature of work, and even the integrity of democratic elections.

Their success, in turn, has prompted calls of government regulation of the technological industry. But before deciding to regulate something, it’s useful to understand it on its own terms.

This sector shares a set of policy concerns — antitrustintellectual propertydata privacy, and digital security — that are at the heart of today's debates about the future of the economy.

Drawing on an array of sources ranging from academic studies, technology journalists, and industry practitioners to think tank surveys, court rulings, industry reports, and Congressional testimony these pages will present information underscoring the potential peril of stifling the innovative engine behind what has been called the “Third Industrial Revolution.”

RealClearPublicAffairs is a new series of sponsored curation designed to provide coverage of important and trending public policy issues. More About



RealClearPublicAffairs
 is a new series of sponsored curation designed to provide coverage of important and trending public policy issues. More About