FCC, NTIA Back Spectrum Innovation Initiative

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WASHINGTON—The FCC has announced that it is partnering with the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) to support the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Spectrum Innovation Initiative. Launched last year, the initiative pushes research and development to address the challenges arising from demand for electromagnetic spectrum access.

The Memorandum of Agreement agreed to by the three parties is meant to ensure that FCC and NTIA staff can provide their subject matter expertise so that NSF’s Spectrum Innovation Initiative investments are aligned with U.S. spectrum regulatory and policy objectives, principles and strategies.

“This Memorandum of Agreement between the National Science Foundation, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration and the Federal Communications Commission is one step toward revitalizing the interagency coordination process so that it once again is able to produce results for American consumers and the economy,” said FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “Better coordination between these agencies ultimately means more spectrum and more innovation to help restore American wireless leadership and build the 5G future.” 

“NSF’s Spectrum Innovation Initiative was created to find ways to maximize our nation’s limited radio spectrum resources,” said Sean L. Jones, NSF assistant director for Mathematical and Physical Sciences. “This agreement will provide enhanced access to NTIA and FCC expertise, helping us focus spectrum research and develop a technologically sophisticated workforce at the speed this nation requires to stay at the forefront of innovation.”

Among research that will be conducted through the Spectrum Innovation Initiative includes spectrum flexibility and agility, working toward near real-time spectrum awareness and improved spectrum efficiency and effectiveness through secure and autonomous spectrum decision-making.

One of the first goals will be the establishment of the U.S.’s first National Center for Wireless Spectrum Research.