CSTB changes the way people think about information technology and public policy. It also advances specific recommendations for action, many of which have been taken up by government and the private sector. Its reports are presented to key decision-makers -- a key element of the dissemination process. Reports are also presented to specialized communities of interest-academic and independent researchers, industry, nonprofit and public interest groups -- via conferences, workshops, and briefings -- serving to educate and motivate action. Congressional testimony and press coverage of the reports creates a wider audience in the national, business, and trade press. CSTB reports are also picked up as trade books, reaching a broader market of people interested in information technology issues. They are used as textbooks, helping to educate the next generation of experts in information technology and public policy.
CSTB has additional impact as an institution: service on the Board and on its study committees has expanded the public policy awareness and public service contribution of many hundreds of computer scientists, while enhancing the insight into information technology of the other experts it engages. Indeed, several of these individuals have adapted their own research programs and undertaken new and more substantial public service commitments as a result of the education they associate with CSTB, creating new human capital at the intersection of information technology and public policy.
Examples of CSTB report impact:
- Explaining how information technology evolves, the role of R&D, and the role of different contributors, public and private, to that process (Innovation in Information Technology, Making IT Better, Funding a Revolution, Evolving the HPCCI to Support the Nation's Information Infrastructure, and Computing the Future)
- Guiding the evolution of computer science research programs (Toward a Safer and More Secure Cyberspace, Renewing U.S. Telecommunications Research, Catalyzing Inquiry at the Interface of Computing and Biology, Embedded, Everywhere: A Research Agenda for Networked Systems of Embedded Computers, Making IT Better, Trust in Cyberspace, More Than Screen Deep, Computing and Communications in the Extreme, and Scaling Up: A Research Agenda for Software Engineering)
- Explicating cybersecurity and trustworthiness challenges, stimulating adoption of better security practices, and charting strategic and research directions. (Toward a Safer and More Secure Cyberspace, Software for Dependable Systems: Sufficient Evidence?, Critical Information Infrastructure Protection and the Law: An Overview of Key Issues, Cybersecurity Today and Tomorrow: Pay Now or Pay Later, Trust in Cyberspace, Realizing the Potential of C4I, and Computers at Risk)
- Exploring privacy challenges in the information age and balancing privacy and other interests (Engaging Privacy and Information Technology in a Digital Age, The Internet's Coming of Age, For the Record, Rights and Responsibilities of Participants in Networked Communities) and providing an evaluation framework for assessing information-based government programs (Protecting Individual Privacy in the Struggle against Terrorism: A Framework for Program Assessment)
- Explicating the workings of the Internet (The Internet Under Crisis Conditions: Learning from September 11 and The Internet's Coming of Age), fostering investment in the foundations of the Internet and its commercialization)
- Enhancing development, use, and strategic planning for information technology in the federal government (Social Security Administration Electronic Service Provision: A Strategic Assessment, A Review of the FBI's Trilogy IT Modernization Program, Building an Electronic Records Archive at NARA: Recommendations for a Long-Term Strategy, LC21: A Digital Strategy for the Library of Congress, Continued Review of Tax Systems Modernization for the Internal Revenue Service, Elements of Systems Modernization for the Social Security Administration)
- Improving electronic voting and voter registration systems (Asking the Right Questions About Electronic Voting, State Voter Registration Databases: Immediate Actions and Future Improvements)
- Stimulating work at the intersection of information technology and the creative arts (Beyond Productivity: Information Technology, Innovation, and Creativity).
- Developing information technology literacy in the broader population (Being Fluent With Information Technology)
- Moving beyond an impasse in cryptography policy (Cryptography's Role in Securing the Information Society)