Editor's Note: A photo of James Siedow is available here.
James Siedow, Duke University's vice provost for research, has been named to the Department of Commerce's Deemed Export Advisory Committee.
The federal advisory committee is charged with recommending improvements to policies that govern the transfer of technology to foreign nationals working within the United States.
At Duke, Siedow oversees campus-wide research initiatives, collaboration among departments and the transfer of technology from Duke laboratories to the commercial sector. Since coming to Duke in 1976, Siedow has served in numerous leadership positions in addition to his appointment as a professor of biology. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a member of Phi Beta Kappa, among other distinctions.
The creation of the Deemed Export Advisory Committee this summer comes after criticism of a proposal that would have introduced greater restrictions on foreign nationals' access to certain technical equipment, much of which is used in academic research. Along with other university leaders, Duke President Richard H. Brodhead, in consultation with Siedow, wrote a letter June 22, 2005, to the U.S. secretary of commerce warning that the proposed restrictions would dramatically hamper academic research.
"I think Commerce has decided to drop back and take a look at this again with all the parties concerned at the table," Siedow said. "I think we need to recognize while certainly there are national security issues right now, a lot of American science has moved forward because of the involvement of foreign nationals.
"We don't want to make America an inhospitable place to work because there is going to be a lot of competition from China, India and Europe, which would be happy to make a home for these researchers."
In nominating Siedow for the committee, Brodhead wrote, "I am confident his experiences as a bench scientist, as a teacher, and as a research administrator would be a powerful resource to you and your colleagues as you develop policies to promote national economic, education, and research goals while balancing the imperative of national security."
Siedow is one of 12 leaders from businesses and academia named to the committee, which first meets Oct. 12.