Lincoln Network Q2 2022 Update

Dear friend of Lincoln:

I’d like to share with you some of our team’s recent activities, including new research from Lincoln Policy, project updates from Lincoln Studio, and other developments across Lincoln Network.

In April, we welcomed two new members to our board of directors: Michael Solana, Vice President at Founders Fund, and Laurent Crenshaw, Global Head of Policy at Patreon.

We were also thrilled to announce four new nonresident senior fellows this quarter. In April, we welcomed Roslyn Layton, PhD, and Jimmy Soni. Layton is Senior Vice President of Strand Consult and Visiting Researcher at Aalborg University Copenhagen. Soni is the best-selling and award-winning author of The Founders: The Story of PayPal and the Entrepreneurs Who Shaped Silicon Valley, among other books.

Then, in May, we brought on Richard Reisman and Jon Askonas. Reisman is an independent media-tech innovator, frequent contributor to Tech Policy Press, and blogger at SmartlyIntertwingled.com. Askonas is an assistant professor of politics at the Catholic University of America, where he works on the connections among the republican tradition, technology, and national security.

Policy

In Q2, Lincoln’s policy work took a global approach, focusing on topics such as technology’s role in the war in Ukraine, the national security implications of immigration policy, and the dangers of digital authoritarianism around the world. As our policy output continues to grow, we’ve added two new members to our staff: Robert Bellafiore, our new Research Manager, and Jonathon Hauenschild, our new Policy Counsel.

Commentary

Lincoln Senior Fellow Geoff Cain interviewed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for WIRED, discussing the role of social media and technology in the war with Russia. Geoff also recently launched a Substack newsletter, “The Burner Files,” where he’ll provide “commentary, interviews, and reportage on global tech and business.” Lars Erik Schönander wrote the first guest post, on Japan’s lessons for U.S. industrial policy.

In his Substack newsletter, “The Pull Request,” Senior Fellow Antonio García Martínez wrote about topics including the Ukrainian refugee crisisfree speech and the internet, and his own experiences with “pseudo-events.”

In The Hill and the Washington Examiner, Dan Lips wrote about legislation that would use the Government Accountability Office to save taxpayers billions of dollars. The Improving Government for America’s Taxpayers Act, which was informed by our research and testimony, passed the House Oversight and Reform and Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committees with bipartisan support. 

Other publications included:

  • Luke Hogg, “How Punishing Big Tech Harms America,” in the National Interest
  • Luke Hogg, “Immigration Could Decide the U.S.-China Artificial Intelligence Race” in the National Interest
  • Lars Erik Schönander, “In War, the Economic Weapon Is No Silver Bullet” in the National Interest
  • Luke Hogg, “In the Battle Against Illiberalism, Don’t Take Big Tech for Granted,” in the National Interest
  • Luke Hogg, “Congress Must Bring More High-Skilled Workers to America,” in the Washington Examiner
  • Luke Hogg, “An Unwillingness to Address Immigration Is Holding the Economy Back,” in RealClearMarkets
  • Lars Erik Schönander, “Expanding High-Skilled STEM Immigration Is a National Security Priority,” in the National Interest
  • Lars Erik Schönander, “Can the Senate See the Future?” in City Journal
  • Luke Hogg, “China Will Exploit U.S. Complacency on Distributed Ledger Technologies,” in the National Interest
  • Dan Lips, “A Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen State and Local Technology Governance,” in The Hill
  • Lars Erik Schönander, “The United States Should Collect Data on Foreign Energy Investment Again,” in RealClearEnergy
  • Luke Hogg, “Strengthen the Open Technology Fund to Counter Digital Authoritarianism,” in the National Interest
  • Geoffrey Cain, “Ukraine versus Afghanistan: Lessons in National Solidarity,” in American Affairs
  • Luke Hogg, “Republicans Should Wait to Regulate Big Tech,” in The Hill

Writings on our blog included:

Research

Dan and Deepesh Chaudhari published a paper on “The Open Technology Fund: Strengthening U.S. Capacity to Counter Digital Authoritarianism.” The paper discusses the success of the Open Technology Fund, a non-profit organization supported by the U.S. Agency for Global Media, at incubating censorship circumvention technologies that promote free speech and internet freedom.

Lincoln staff also submitted several testimonies to Congress in recent months:

  • Senior Fellow Reynold Schweickhardt testified before the Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress about ways to improve the digital capacity of the House of Representatives.
  • Dan submitted testimony to the House Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee on the importance of funding the Government Accountability Office.
  • Dan also submitted testimony to the House Subcommittee on Labor, Health & Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies, calling for oversight of the Education Department’s programs to increase the return-on-investment from education research and development expenditures.
  • Then, Dan submitted testimony to the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch, U.S. Government Accountability Office Appropriations, again making the case for funding the Government Accountability Office and leveraging its nonpartisan oversight to improve efficiency.
  • For the House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs, Dan submitted testimony calling for additional funding for the U.S. Agency for Global Media and its grantee, the Open Technology Fund. He submitted a similar testimony to the Senate Appropriations subcommittee.
  • Lars submitted testimony to the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on the Energy and Water Development Branch, Energy Information Administration Appropriations, calling for greater transparency within the Energy Information Administration regarding foreign investments in the U.S. energy sector.
  • Finally, Luke and Jonathon submitted testimony to the Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government, calling for additional funding for the Federal Trade Commission to expand its technical staff.

Fellowships

In May, we held our Policy Hacker Fellowship summit in Austin, bringing together our second cohort of tech professionals interested in the public policy world. We recently opened up applications for our third cohort and are looking forward to selecting our next fellows in the near future.

Studio

The last few months were an exciting time for the Lincoln Studio team. We’ve been hard at work and have added two new members: Andy Long as Director of Product and Inês Juárez Frutuoso as Senior Designer. Lincoln Studio aims to build technology and creative partnerships to solve critical, high-stakes problems facing our country, and we’re pleased to report on the success that our products are seeing. 

Project Nickel 

Project Nickel now reports on school spending per pupil for all 50 states and the District of Columbia, up from 37 states previously. We owe a special thanks to EdChoice for funding the work and to Edunomics Lab for aggregating the data that Project Nickel uses. To explore Project Nickel and learn how much your school spends per student, click here.

Schoolahoop 

Great things have been happening with Schoolahoop, Lincoln’s platform for school choice. We expanded Schoolahoop beyond Texas and Florida into Arizona, and we’re now live in the Kansas City metro area, with an expansion into Wisconsin planned for later this year. Our team continues to optimize the platform and build new features, such as Scholarship Discovery, that will help parents provide the best possible education for their children. Our next improvement will be an embeddable version of Schoolahoop, allowing organizations to use Schoolahoop on their own website and making custom school finder apps a thing of the past.

BIP Bounty

The Studio team aims to support the open-source development of Bitcoin Core innovation through tax-deductible donations. To that end, we’re building BIP Bounty, a platform for crowdsourcing tax-deductible bug bounties that will encourage the research, development, and vetting of Bitcoin Improvement Proposals (BIPs). If there is an issue/bounty to be claimed, we will distribute the rewards to bounty winners. BIP Bounty will initially focus on BIP-119 by Jeremy Rubin, which has more than 5.5 BTC publicly committed towards bug bounties. From there, we’ll expand to supporting more bounty programs for even more BIPs.

Events & Podcasts

Events

In addition to hosting happy hours at our D.C. office and in Miami during Miami Tech Week, we partnered with some of our favorite organizations in recent months to discuss the future of technology and politics.

We joined the Charter Cities Institute and Braavos Cities during Miami Tech Week for a discussion about “Tech and the Future of Cities.”

We also partnered with the American Enterprise Institute for a symposium on “Science and Technology Advice for Congress,” featuring Comptroller General of the United States Gene L. Dodaro.

Looking ahead, we’re getting ready for our annual Reboot conference, to be held in Miami on October 13. Tickets are on sale now, with an early bird sale ending August 22.

Finally, we’re looking forward to our event on September 9 in San Francisco, where we’ll be discussing social media, free speech, and the digital public sphere with Antonio García Martínez, Murmmuration Labs’ Alex Feerst, WIRED’s Gilad Edelman, and the Stanford Internet Observatory’s Renée DiResta and Alex Stamos.

Podcasts

Marshall Kosloff and Saagar Enjeti will soon hit three years of hosting their podcast The Realignment, which is sponsored by Lincoln. They’ve continued to host fascinating conversations in recent months with speakers such as Marc AndreessenGen. Robert Spalding, and Mike Solana. The Realignment also recently launched a paid subscription model, reflecting the show’s expanding ambitions.

Meanwhile, Antonio has been hosting his own conversations at “The Pull Request,” speaking with Tyler CowenPeter ThielDavid Sacks, and others.


Thank you for following our work. We appreciate your continued interest in Lincoln Network and our mission and welcome any questions or feedback.

If you’re interested in supporting our mission, you can donate here.

Sincerely,
Zach Graves
Executive Director, Lincoln Network

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Dan Lips
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Zach Graves
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Marshall Kosloff
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Deepesh Chaudhari
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