The Government-University-Industry Research Roundtable, within the division on Policy and Global Affairs Division, is charged with improving the research enterprise of the United States by successfully resolving the cross-sectoral issues that prevent the U.S. research enterprise from reaching its full potential. This mission is achieved by convening senior-most representatives from government, universities, and industry to frame the critical issues, followed – when appropriate – by the execution of activities designed to address specific cross-sectoral impediments to achieving a healthy, vibrant research enterprise. GUIRR provides a unique forum for dialogue among top government and GUIRR Partners of the national science and technology enterprise.


To convene senior-most representatives from government, universities, and industry to define and explore critical issues related to the national and global science and technology agenda that are of shared interest; to frame the next critical question stemming from current debate and analysis; and to incubate activities of on-going value to the stakeholders. This forum is designed to facilitate candid dialogue among participants, to foster self-implementing activities, and, where appropriate, to carry awareness of consequences to the wider public.


GUIRR was created to provide a unique forum for dialogue among top government and GUIRR Partners of the national science and technology enterprise. The participation of the federal science and technology leadership in an open dialogue and informal exchange of ideas precludes making formal recommendations or offering specific advice to federal agencies. Instead, the Roundtable seeks to stimulate new approaches by direct engagement of government, university, and industry leaders in their respective spheres.

There are three formal categories of GUIRR membership:

  • Council Members include Academies presidents of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the National Academy of Medicine; the heads of major federal R&D agencies (for non-R&D agencies, the head of the largest R&D-performing subdivision); and ten university presidents and industry CEOs, as appointed by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. With the exception of the federal agency officials, who serve as long as they are in office, Roundtable Council members are appointed to staggered three-year terms.
  • Council Associates are identified delegates of the ex-officio Council Members, plus the Chair of the Federal Demonstration Partnership. Council Associates are designated by individual federal agency heads as their alternative representatives to GUIRR.
  • University-Industry Partners are representatives from universities and industries with a history of partnerships and dedication to the research enterprise. They act, in effect, as an "antenna" to bring the most current ideas and issues facing government-university-industry research cooperation across the country into GUIRR discussions, and to help disseminate ideas.

GUIRR also honors former Council and Executive Committee members as Distinguished Fellows. These individuals have either (1) served the maximum allowable two consecutive three-year terms on the GUIRR Council or (2) no longer qualify as federal ex officio members because their federal appointment was during a previous Administration but wish to remain engaged in Roundtable activity.

Operating Format

GUIRR holds three meetings a year that convene the entire membership for exposure to new issues. At these meetings, outside experts are brought in to provide their unique perspectives and promote cross-sector dialogue amongst the GUIRR membership. The intent is to catalyze support and action across government, university, and industry to meet critical science and technology needs.

In addition to its meetings, GUIRR has projects which operate at the working group level throughout the year. These projects typically report back to the entire membership at the three annual meetings. Because the variety of issues that GUIRR can undertake is large, its funds are finite, and the format for potential projects so varied, GUIRR relies on its members to set its vision. Projects, topics, and activities are self-nominated and championed by individuals, though the GUIRR Executive Committee exerts control over the number of projects undertaken at any given time. GUIRR provides all staff support for approved projects, including fundraising. Once a project is completed, the task force that self-assembled to complete it dissolves.

What Makes Us Different

GUIRR provides a forum like no other, where a unique mix of sectors comes together to understand how the other side thinks. The participants are senior leaders within their organizations. GUIRR offers “neutral turf” and closed doors for very frank discussions that builds bridges and spurs accelerated activities.

GUIRR-initiated collaborations of individuals from the government and GUIRR Partners have a continuing record of success in improving the effectiveness of U.S. science and technology and its application to national goals.  Looking to the future, we believe this approach – reflecting the initiative of its members – will remain timely in an increasingly interdependent world.


We believe that the most pressing technological problems of this nation cannot be solved by one company, one university, or one federal agency. Whether export controls and visa policy, or the national infrastructure for innovation, or the fate of the science and engineering workforce, these are challenges that require multiple sectors to come together to forge a solution. GUIRR brings together the leadership from all three sectors – government, university, and industry – to craft these overarching solutions. While many organizations advertise prestigious membership lists, GUIRR is unique in having the federal agencies at the table; in providing a protected, neutral environment for candid dialogue across sectors; in allowing any individual member to champion a project; and in providing all required staff and monetary resources for project execution.

The result is unparalleled access to breaking information, leading to rapid insight and solution execution. The requirement that each project have a “champion” before going forward also ensures buy-in from at least one major organization or entity; i.e., clear outcomes.