The administration of US President Joe Biden continues to build its national digital asset research and development agenda. In a request for information (RFI) dated January 26 and previewed by the Federal Register, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) seeks comments to help it identify agenda priorities. . Individuals and organizations can submit comments up to ten pages in length by March 23.
The White House announced the creation of the agenda in September among a slew of next steps after its unveiling of the “first-ever” comprehensive framework for responsible development of digital assets. As such, the new program is part of the wave of crypto-related research activity initiated by the Presidential Decree (EO) on ensuring responsible development of digital assets issued in March.
Related: Regulators and Industry Leaders React to Biden’s Crypto Executive Order
RFI said the program aims to “shape a whole-of-government effort” to develop digital assets and distributed ledger technology. It was also described as a way to “continue to support research that translates technological breakthroughs into market-ready products” and to “jumpstart basic research”. He stated:
“Research and development (R&D) in this space has often been conducted in a piecemeal fashion, with limited consideration for the broader implications, applications and risks of underlying innovations. […] A more comprehensive R&D approach would provide concrete areas of focus to achieve a holistic view of a digital asset ecosystem that embodies democratic values and other key priorities.
A blockchain specialist position was added to the OSTP with the passage of the Chips and Science Act in August. The office reviewed and reported on the effects of digital assets on the environment as part of its OT mandate and prepared a survey of central bank digital currency design options as part of the review in course and so far inconclusive of a US digital dollar.
1/ Some background on the new White House Global Framework for Responsible Development of Digital Assets that was released this morning. (I’ll share later…) Policy making is a process. It is complicated, slow, difficult work. But it is important. And it moves.
—Tomicah Tillemann (@TomicahTD) September 16, 2022
Reaction to Biden’s comprehensive framework ranged from lukewarm praise to outright disappointment.