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Dingell Seeks to Spur Innovation, Hosts Discussion with Local Innovation Leaders & Members of Congress

Ann Arbor, MI, May 20, 2016

Today, U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (MI-12) convened a summit of regional leaders in business, manufacturing and academia to discuss policies that Congress should consider to support innovation across the country and ensure that the United States stays at the forefront of innovation and technology in the world.  Dingell was joined by U.S. Congressmen Mark Pocan (WI-02) and Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11) for the discussion, which is part of a series across the country to listen and understand the issues that should be included in an Innovation Agenda 2.0. 
“The United States needs to ensure that we remain in the driver’s seat in promoting innovation and technology,” said Rep. Dingell.  “Michigan is an important contributor to the dynamic work happening in this country, from the groundbreaking emergence of connected and automated vehicles, to researching new drugs and medical devices, to developing next generation drone technologies, among much other work.  To ensure we stay at the top, we need to have an environment that allows for the next big idea to actually be developed and become a technological breakthrough.  That’s what the Innovation Agenda is all about.  By bringing together leaders in innovation in our region and across the country, we are able to identify ways to support the ideas, creativity , and entrepreneurial spirit that has always defined the American workforce and will drive our economy in the future.  I especially want to thank my colleagues Congressman Mark Pocan and Congressman Mark DeSaulnier for coming to Michigan to hear from some of the brightest minds in the country about the bold steps that are needed to spur innovation.” 
“In order for the United States to remain a leader in innovation, we must invest in scientific research, maintain a skilled workforce, and create an environment that encourages entrepreneurship,” said Rep. Pocan. “Today, we heard from many leaders in innovation about how we can help ensure America’s competitiveness and also spur economic growth. Thank you to Congresswoman Debbie Dingell for hosting this event and I look forward to working with my colleagues to identify new initiatives that will keep our country moving forward.”
“Harnessing innovation is critical to the future of work, wages, and labor in the United States.  I thank Congresswoman Dingell for inviting me to share the successes we have seen in California and to learn what is working in Michigan.  By bringing together employers, innovators, and workers from across the country, we can identify new ways to innovate, create jobs, and build a stronger economy,” said Rep. DeSaulnier.
The Innovation Agenda was first launched in 2007 with the goal of ensuring that the U.S. remained the world’s leader of innovation. To develop that plan, Members of Congress held listening sessions to gather ideas from local leaders in innovation on what the emerging areas in innovation are and how public-private partnerships and other initiatives can stimulate innovation and increase America’s competitiveness. Innovation Agenda 1.0 generated valuable policy ideas, 21 of which were translated into legislative provisions that were signed into law – giving more Americans access to high-speed Internet, expanding investments in clean energy technologies and supporting research and development. Now, Members of Congress have launched Innovation Agenda 2.0 to build on the progress made by the first Innovation Agenda.
For an overview of the Innovation Agenda 1.0, please click here.

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