White House seeks public help in developing quantum policy

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The White House is seeking the public’s help to fine-tune its quantum computing policy.

In a new request for information, the White House’s National Science and Technology Council Subcommittee on Quantum Information Sciences (QIS) asked for agencies in the federal government, academics and the private sector to advise the administration on its quantum policy.

The RFI coincided with a panel of technology experts convened on White House grounds to discuss quantum innovation last Friday.

Questions in the RFI focus on how the U.S. government should be assisting the development of the next generation of computing. The RFI seeks public insight on how to help the private sector and ways federal agencies can partner with stakeholders to invigorate innovation.

“[W]hat roles can the U.S. Government play in enabling the innovation ecosystem around QIS-related technologies?” the RFI asks.

Another point addressed in the RFI is retaining the talent needed to build next-generation technologies like quantum computers. Immigration and retention of international students have been hot-button issues as the Trump administration seeks to change the immigration system.

The RFI comes as the White House and other federal agencies announce funding and policy initiatives to boost quantum development. Last week, the Department of Energy announced its intent to fund new Quantum Information Science Centers — the “flagship” for quantum development, according to the DOE.

The solicitation also references the National Quantum Initiative Act, a 2018 law that releases more than $1.2 billion in funding for quantum initiatives.

The White House will accept comments until July 29.

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Department of Energy (DOE), National Science and Technology Council, quantum computing, RFI, White House
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