Erica R.H. Fuchs is a professor in the Department of Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University, and by courtesy in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy. She is also a research associate with the National Bureau of Economic Research. Fuchs’ research focuses on the development, commercialization and global manufacturing of emerging technologies, and national policy in that context.

Fuchs is passionate about building nationally the intellectual foundations, data, and analytic tools to inform National Technology Strategy across government missions. Toward realizing this vision, Fuchs catalyzed and was director of the one-year $4M pilot National Network for Critical Technology Assessment funded by NSF’s Technology, Innovation and Partnerships Office, and involving academic thought-leaders from more than 13 Tier I research universities across the country, which culminated in the report Securing America’s Future: A framework for Critical Technology Assessment. She also founded Carnegie Mellon’s Critical Technology Strategy Initiative, an initiative spanning Carnegie Mellon’s schools of engineering, computer science, and the Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy. Fuchs was previously founding faculty director of Carnegie Mellon University’s Manufacturing Futures Initiative, an initiative across six schools aimed to revolutionize the commercialization and local production of advanced manufactured products, which today is an endowed institute.

Over the past two decades, Fuchs has played a growing role in national and international dialogues on technology policy, particularly as it relates to advanced manufactured products, trade, innovation, and labor outcomes. She currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the National Semiconductor Technology Center and has been appointed by President Biden to the White House Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations. Fuchs has also served on a variety of academic visiting committees and advisory boards, including currently serving on M.I.T. Corporation’s Visiting Committee for M.I.T.’s Institute for Data, Systems, and Society, of which M.I.T.’s Technology Policy Program is a part; and on the Advisory Editorial Board for Research Policy. Fuchs’ work has been published among other places in Science, the Nature journals, Research Policy, Industrial and Corporate Change, and Management Science. She has testified in Congressional hearings in both the House and Senate and had her work covered by National Public Radio, Bloomberg, and the New York Times. Fuchs completed her Ph.D. in engineering systems (2006), her master’s in technology policy (2003), and her bachelor’s in materials science and engineering (1999), all from M.I.T.  She spent 1999-2000 as a fellow at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization in Beijing, China. Fuchs grew up and attended K-12 in the Reading Public School District in Reading, PA.

131E Baker/Porter Hall

Technology Development: Government and Location


2006 Ph.D., Engineering Systems, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

2003 M.Sc., Technology Policy, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

1999 BS, Materials Science and Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Media mentions

CMU Engineering

Anticipating and reducing EV battery supply disruptions

A recent study analyzes the relationship between EV battery chemistry and supply chain vulnerability for four critical minerals across particular countries that are key contributors to production.

Issues in Science and Technology

Fuchs featured in a podcast done by Issues in Science and Technology

EPP’s Erica Fuchs was featured in a podcast by Issues in Science and Technology. She and Lisa Margonelli talk about Fuchs’ pilot project that she has been working on for the past year—the National Network for Critical Technology Assessment.


US draws up plans for new national body to monitor R&D strengths and weaknesses

NNCTA’s Erica Fuchs discusses new national body that will help government assess new technologies in Science|Business. “Does government today have in its hands the data and analytic capacity to form its national technology strategy? The answer is no, it does not,” Fuchs says. “In the end, it’s going to be a question for Congress, and what they appropriate. I would argue that we have no time to waste.”

Federal News Network

A call for disruptive change in how the government assesses technology

NNCTA’s Erica Fuchs was interviewed by the Federal News Network on the National Network for Critical Technology Assessment. Fuchs is part of a team of experts pushing for the government to change the way technology is assessed and what challenges face the U.S.

CMU Engineering

Moonshot grant launches faculty to new heights

The National Network for Critical Technology Assessment (NNCTA), directed by Erica Fuchs, shares their findings in their report, Securing America’s Future: A Framework for Critical Technology Assessment.

CNN Business

Fuchs talks about autoworkers’ roles in the electric car industry

EPP’s Erica Fuchs talks to CNN Business about the autoworkers’ roles in the electric car industry. “Making the powertrain of electric vehicles—the batteries, electric motors and power management systems—requires more total labor, not less, than that involved in making engines and transmissions,” she says.


CMU’s take on autoworkers in the electric car industry in Axios

As the auto industry begins making the switch over to electric vehicles (EVs), a popular contention is that it takes fewer workers to manufacture EVs. However, researchers at CMU have found that it actually takes more labor hours as battery cell production is a complex and time-consuming process.

National Institute of Standards and Technology

Fuchs elected to the Board of the National Semiconductor Technology Center

EPP’s Erica Fuchs was elected to the board of trustees that will oversee a nonprofit entity that is expected to run the National Semiconductor Technology Center (NSTC).

Engineering and Public Policy

Professor Erica Fuchs to join president’s advisory committee

Professor Erica Fuchs has been nominated by President Biden to the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations.

Engineering and Public Policy

Understanding America’s greatest vulnerabilities

Professor Erica Fuchs was featured in The New York Times in an article that focuses on the one-year pilot project for a proposed National Network for Critical Technology Assessment, which Fuchs leads.

Brookings Institution

Fuchs speaks on industrial policy at a Hamilton Project event

EPP’s Erica Fuchs spoke at a Hamilton Project event at the Brookings Institution. As a panelist, she discussed the importance of a modern industrial policy that ideally focuses on the service and tech sectors.

CMU Engineering

Engineering faculty featured in events at GCEAF

Many faculty from across the College of Engineering will be featured at events during this year’s Global Clean Energy Action Forum.