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Adam Segal

Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies and Director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program

Expertise

Technology and development in China and India; East Asian security; Chinese domestic and foreign policy; cyberconflict, cybersecurity

Programs

Asia Program

Featured Publications

Task Force Report No. 70

Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet

The CFR-sponsored Independent Task Force report, Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet, finds that as more people and services become interconnected and dependent on the Internet, societies are becoming increasingly vulnerable to cyberattacks. To support security, innovation, growth, and the free flow of information, the Task Force recommends that the United States and its partners work to build a cyber alliance, make the free flow of information a part of all future trade agreements, and articulate an inclusive and robust vision of Internet governance.

See more in Global; Cybersecurity; Internet Policy

All Publications

Ask CFR Experts

Is the threat of a "cyber Pearl Harbor" as potent as some have suggested?

Asked by James Bingham, from King's College, London

The phrase "cyber Pearl Harbor" received attention when it by former defense secretary Leon E. Panetta in a speech about U.S. vulnerability to cyberwarfare threats. It is best understood as an effort to shape the domestic political debate and as a description of a potential future scenario, rather than as an accurate description of the cybersecurity threat.

Read full answer

See more in Cybersecurity; United States

Task Force Report No. 70

Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet

The CFR-sponsored Independent Task Force report, Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet, finds that as more people and services become interconnected and dependent on the Internet, societies are becoming increasingly vulnerable to cyberattacks. To support security, innovation, growth, and the free flow of information, the Task Force recommends that the United States and its partners work to build a cyber alliance, make the free flow of information a part of all future trade agreements, and articulate an inclusive and robust vision of Internet governance.

See more in Global; Cybersecurity; Internet Policy

Op-Ed

Shaming Chinese Hackers Won't Work Because Cyber Espionage is Here to Stay

Author: Adam Segal
The Guardian

In preparation for President Xi Jinping and President Barack Obama's meeting in California on June 7-9, Adam Segal writes, "The presidents won't come to any agreements next week, but over the course of the two days, they should try and dispel the growing mistrust by explaining their national interests and intentions in cyberspace."

See more in United States; Cybersecurity; China

Article

The People's Republic of Hacking

Author: Adam Segal
Foreign Policy

Adam Segal says the recent Chinese cyberattacks on Bloomberg and the New York Times highlights both the willingness of Beijing to shape the narrative about China, as well as the vulnerability the top leadership feels about how they are portrayed.

See more in Cybersecurity; China

Foreign Affairs Article

Chinese Computer Games

Author: Adam Segal

In March 2011, the U.S. computer security company RSA announced that hackers had gained access to security tokens it produces that let millions of government and private-sector employees, including those of defense contractors such as Lockheed Martin, connect remotely to their office computers.

See more in China; Cybersecurity

Video

Cybersecurity and the Private Sector

Interviewer: Adam Segal
Interviewee: Edward Amoroso

AT&T's Chief Security Officer, Edward Amoroso, discusses the recent spate of cyberattacks and how governments and the private sector can help protect infrastructure and prevent future attacks with Adam Segal, Ira A. Lipman Senior Fellow for Counterterrorism and National Security Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations.

See more in Cybersecurity; Global

Current Projects

Roundtable Series on Cyberconflict and Cybersecurity

Staff: Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies and Director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program
Director: James P. Dougherty, Adjunct Senior Fellow for Business and Foreign Policy
September 23, 2009—Present

This roundtable series brings together policymakers, scholars, and private sector specialists to explore the growing threats in cyberspace to the U.S. economy and security.

U.S.-Asia Update Roundtable Series

Directors: Elizabeth C. Economy, C.V. Starr Senior Fellow and Director for Asia Studies, and Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies and Director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program
July 1, 2007—Present

The U.S.-Asia Update Roundtable Series provides a forum for discussion of the major issues that shape Chinese domestic policies, U.S.-China relations, and East Asian regional dynamics. This series is made possible through generous support from the Starr Foundation.

Past Projects

Roundtable on Innovation and Technological Entrepreneurship in Asia

Director: Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies and Director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program
May 1, 2005—July 31, 2010

The Roundtable Series on Innovation and Technological Entrepreneurship in Asia evaluated the impact of emerging technological capabilities on American economic, political, and military power, and recommended policies designed to ensure continued U.S. technological superiority.

Study Group on Chinese Economic Development and U.S. National Security

Chair: Kenneth Lieberthal
Staff: Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies and Director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program
January 1, 2003—June 30, 2004

This study group drew attention to the unraveling of the bipartisan consensus that Chinese economic development is good for U.S. security, provided a framework for assessing what security benefits and risks the U.S. can expect from its future economic relations with China, and described what the end of this consensus means for U.S. policy toward China.

Independent Task Force on Chinese Military Power

Chair: Harold Brown
Staff: Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies and Director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program
February 1, 2002—May 31, 2003

The rise of China has long been a growing concern among U.S. policymakers. Of particular concern is the strength of Chinese military power and its relation to U.S. military capability. This report assessed the ongoing development of China's military and provided an outlook on America's ability to maintain military superiority in the coming decades.

Recent Activity from Asia Unbound

CFR Events

General Meeting ⁄ Washington

The Future of Internet Governance

Speakers:

Lynn St. Amour, President and CEO, Internet Matters; Former President and CEO, Internet Society, Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies and Project Directer of CFR-sponsored Independent Task Force, Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet, Council on Foreign Relations, Daniel Sepulveda, Deputy Assistant Secretary and U.S. Coordinator for International Communications and Information Policy, Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs, U.S. Department of State

Presider:

Catherine Lotrionte, Associate Director, Institute for International Law & Politics, Georgetown University
May 15, 2014 12:00-12:30 p.m. - Registration and Reception
12:30-1:30 p.m. - Meeting

This meeting is on the record.

ListenWatch

Guest Event ⁄ Washington

Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet: Report of the CFR-Sponsored Independent Task Force on U.S. Policy in the Digital Age

Speakers:

John D. Negroponte, Vice Chairman, McLarty Associates; Former Deputy Secretary of State and Director of National Intelligence; Task Force Co-Chair, Samuel J. Palmisano, Former Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, IBM Corporation; Task Force Co-Chair, Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies, Council on Foreign Relations; Task Force Project Director

Presider:

Vivian Schiller, Chief Digital Officer, NBC News
June 10, 2013 12:00-12:30 p.m. - Lunch Reception
12:30-1:30 p.m. - Meeting

This meeting is on the record.

ListenWatch

Guest Event ⁄ New York

Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet: Report of the CFR-Sponsored Independent Task Force on U.S. Policy in the Digital Age

Panelists:

John D. Negroponte, Vice Chairman, McLarty Associates; Former Deputy Secretary of State, U.S. Department of State; Former Director of National Intelligence; Task Force Chair, Samuel J. Palmisano, Former Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, IBM Corporation; Task Force Chair, Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies, Council on Foreign Relations; Task Force Director

Presider:

Jacob M. Weisberg, Chairman, The Slate Group
June 6, 2013 1:00-1:30 p.m. - Lunch
1:30-2:30 p.m. - Meeting

This meeting is on the record.

ListenWatch

Academic Conference Call

China, Cybersecurity, and Crisis Stability

Speaker:

Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies, Council on Foreign Relations
April 25, 2013 12:00-1:00 p.m. - (ET)

This meeting is on the record.

Listen

Corporate Meeting

The Business Impact of a Changing Cyber Landscape

Speaker:

Edward Amoroso, Senior Vice President and Chief Security Officer, AT&T Services, Inc.

Presider:

Adam Segal, Ira A. Lipman Senior Fellow for Counterterrorism and National Security Studies Council on Foreign Relations
June 15, 2011 6:30-7:00 p.m. - Dinner Reception
7:00-8:00 p.m. - Meeting

This meeting is on the record.

Watch

Conference Panel Session

China 2025: Panel Two: China Goes Global

Moderator:

Sheila A. Smith, Senior Fellow for Japan Studies, Council on Foreign Relations

Panelists:

Evan A. Feigenbaum, Senior Fellow for East, Central, and South Asia, Council on Foreign Relations, Michael A. Levi, David M. Rubenstein Senior Fellow for Energy and the Environment and Director of the Program on Energy Security and Climate Change, Council on Foreign Relations, Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies, Council on Foreign Relations, David H. Shinn, Adjunct Professor, George Washington University
October 19, 2009

This meeting is on the record.

ListenWatch

Guest Event ⁄ New York

Koppel on Discovery: The People's Republic of Capitalism

Speakers:

Ted Koppel, Managing Editor, Discovery Channel, Adam Segal, Maurice R. Greenberg Senior Fellow for China Studies, Council on Foreign Relations

Presider:

David E. Sanger, Chief Washington Correspondent, The New York Times
June 26, 2008 6:30-7:30 p.m. - Cocktail Buffet Reception
7:30-8:15 p.m. - Screening
8:15-9:00 p.m. - Discussion

This meeting is on the record.

ListenWatch

Press/Panels

Video Interview

Push for Cyber Diplomacy

Adam Segal appears on FOX Business news to discuss the push for cyber diplomacy in President Barack Obama's meeting with Xi Jinping in California this weekend.

Watch

Bio

Adam Segal is the Maurice R. Greenberg senior fellow for China studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). An expert on security issues, technology development, and Chinese domestic and foreign policy, Dr. Segal currently leads the Cyberconflict and Cybersecurity Initiative. Most recently, he was the project director for the CFR-sponsored Independent Task Force report Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet. His book Advantage: How American Innovation Can Overcome the Asian Challenge (W.W. Norton, 2011) looks at the technological rise of Asia. His work has appeared in the Financial Times, The Economist, Foreign Policy, The Wall Street Journal, and Foreign Affairs, among others. He currently writes for the blog, "Asia Unbound."

Before coming to CFR, Dr. Segal was an arms control analyst for the China Project at the Union of Concerned Scientists. There, he wrote about missile defense, nuclear weapons, and Asian security issues. He has been a visiting scholar at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Center for International Studies, the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, and Tsinghua University in Beijing. He has taught at Vassar College and Columbia University. Dr. Segal is the author of Digital Dragon: High-Technology Enterprises in China (Cornell University Press, 2003), as well as several articles and book chapters on Chinese technology policy.

Dr. Segal has a BA and PhD in government from Cornell University, and an MA in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University.