Legislative Typology: Classifying science and technology legislation based on purpose

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21 Νοε 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 8 μήνες)

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Legislative Typology: Classifying science and technology legislation based on purpose



Paper
Abstract for
the
2011
Atlanta Conference on Science and Innovation Policy


Marlit Hayslett, Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI),
Marlit.Hayslett@gtri.gatech.edu

Moon Kim, Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI),
Moon.Kim@gtri.gatech.edu

Elena Petrakieva, Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI),

Elena
.Petrakieva@gtri.gatech.edu


Background
:
The authors of this paper research state
-
level science and technology (S&T)
policy by
obs
erving

trends
across

state legislation
. Examining legislation on S&T as a unit of
analysis, the authors
developed a
classification
system

to categorize bills based on their
overarching purpose. The resulting
system

is called the Legislative Typology that
is designed to
help analyst
s

classify bills by answering a series of questions that leads to one of the four types:
regulate, promote, limit,
or
study
.


To date, the Legislative Typology has been tested on
introdu
ced and/or enacted S&T legislation from all fifty states during the 2009 and 2010
legislative sessions. This paper details the methodology
of

Legislative
Typology
, the results
using the 2009 and 2010 legislative dataset,

challenges
to the current method
ology
,
and salient
research questions that are being considered for the next phase of the project.


Methodology
:

The Legislative Typology classifies S&T legislation based on its overarching
purpose of the bill with regards to
an
S&T “keyword”.
The Typology is based on the assumption
that the bill
promotes, regulates, limits, or studies

the S&T keyword as determined by the
legislative effect of the bill’s text in expanding or reducing (or neither) the availability of the
keyword as determined by
the number of users. For instance, California Senate Bill 17 on the
keyword “smart grid” calls for a smart grid deployment plan. SB 17 will increase the availability
of the smart grid by virtue of the deployment plan. Therefore, SB 17 is
promoting

the k
eyword
smart grid.


The
S&T
keyword is an identifier used
to query
for relevant S&T bills from
a
subscription
-
based
legislati
ve

database and
to
subsequently
validat
e

them
against a
set
of criteria
to
determine if they should
be included in the
final
dataset.
Examples of keywords are cloud
computing, radio frequency identification, g
lobal warming, and smart grid.
The

Legislative
Typology

is used to
identify the bill’s purpose towards the S&T keyword and
to classify the bill

in one of four types:

a)

Pro
mote: If the main purpose of a bill is to increase the usage, availability, or the
pervasiveness of the keyword in a state, we consider the
bill

to be promoting the keyword

b)

Regulate: If the bill consists of rules, standards, or assigns responsibility of t
he keyword
to a certain entity, the

bill

is regulating the keyword.

c)

Limit: If the main purpose of the bill is to reduce the usage, prohibit or otherwise limit
the availability of the keyword in the state,
the bill is
limiting the keyword.

d)

Study: If the
main purpose of the bill is to
mandate a pilot program, committee,
commission, or other
means
to study the effects of the keyword
, the bill is studying the
keyword
.

The authors created a decision
-
making flowchart that presents the Legislative Typology
met
hodology visually in order to standardize the analysis
.
Using the flowchart, an analyst must
read the bill in the context of the keyword and answer a series of questions
which leads to one of
the four classifications of the bill’s type.

Promote

53%

Regulate

34%

Limit

6%

Study

7%

Promote

61%

Regulate

33%

Limit

2%

Study

4%

Findings:

The authors have tested the Legislative Typology on
1,887
S&T bills, collected
based on 37 keywords from fifty states during the 2009 legislative session, and 4,696 S&T bills
collected based on 71 keywords from fifty states during the 2010 legislative sess
ion. Figure
1

and Figure
2 present

the numeric results of the Legislative Typology.




















Challenges
:
There are several challenges associated with the Legislative Typology as
determined by the
bill’s effect on the
availability of the
keyword. First,
the keyword list contains
different types of
words
.

For example, some
key
words
like smart grid and Voice
over Internet
Protocol
are clearly technolog
ies
, while others like STEM education, telecommunications, and
renewable energy are broader and could be described as policy areas.
The
authors are

exploring
ways to create multiple keyword lists,
which will ent
ail modification to the Typology.
A second
challenge is that a single piece of legislation often has more than one

type

. One bill might
provide incentives for the use of the smart grid, while setting parameters to standardize its use.

At present, the analysts may assign two types, but
the methodology does not allow for
distinctions between primary and secondary types. Third,

the Typology does not capture the
policy “tool” employed by the bill to fulfill its overarching purpose towards
the keyword. How
is the bill promoting the keyword? Is the bill promoting by the use of incentives, funding
programs, or tax breaks? The authors are currently working to enhance the Typology to
account
for this new layer of analysis for the 2011 legisla
tive dataset.


Research Questions
:

This paper will
address
the following research questions:



How can the Typology be enhanced to accommodate keywords from various S&T genres
and scope (products vs. practices vs. policy areas)?



How can the Typology accommodate more than one type of bill’s overarching purpose
towards the keyword?



What modifications, if any, should be made to the Typology so that the methodology can
systematically classify and distinguish bills that focus
entirely on the keyword versus bills
that mention the keyword tangentially in the legislation as part of a larger discussion?

Legislative Typology Overview

Total Number of S&T Legislation in 2009

1,887

Number of bills
promoting

S&T

999

Number of bills

regulating

S&T

652

Number of bills
limiting
S&T

107

Number of bills
studying
S&T

129

Legislative Typology Overview

Total Number of S&T
Legislation in 2010

4,696

Number of bills
promoting

S&T

2,889

Number of bills

regulating

S&T

1,555

Number of bills
limiting
S&T

74

Number of bills
studying
S&T

178

Figure

1
. Legislative Typology Results for 2009 S&T Legislation

Figure 2
. Legislative Typology Results for 2010 S&T Legislation