Technology and Foreign Policy

Foreign Affairs Article

The Age of Transparency

Author: Sean P. Larkin

Transparency has long been a rare commodity in international affairs. But today, the forces of technology are ushering in a new age of openness that would have been unthinkable just a few decades ago. Governments, journalists, and nongovernmental organ­izations (NGOs) can now harness a flood of open-source information, drawn from commercial surveillance satellites, drones, smartphones, and computers, to reveal hidden activities in contested areas—from Ukraine to Syria to the South China Sea.

See more in Global; Technology and Foreign Policy

Analysis Brief

Missiles Confound ABM Technology

Two missile-driven crises on opposite ends of the planet point up several realities about anti-missile technology: first, that nothing in current arsenals can counter them, and second, that the small, cheap artillery rockets fired by Hezbollah pose a far more difficult challenge today than complex ICBMs.

See more in Israel; Technology and Foreign Policy


War Goes Viral

Authors: Emerson T. Brooking and P.W. Singer
The Atlantic

Social media has altered the nature of war, argue Emerson T. Brooking and P.W. Singer. The viral propaganda of the self-declared Islamic State, Russian disinformation campaigns, and Chinese cyber-nationalism are all indications of a more fundamental shift in conflict—a revolution that threatens to catch U.S. policymakers and social media companies off guard. 

See more in Global; Technology and Foreign Policy; Social Media


The Future of Artificial Intelligence: Robots and Beyond

Speakers: Peter Bock, Paul Cohen, and Andrew McAfee
Presider: Amy Alving

George Washington University's Peter Bock, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Paul Cohen, and MIT's Andrew McAfee join Amy Alving, former chief technology officer of Science Applications International, to discuss recent innovations in artificial intelligence as well as the economic and security implications of these technological advances.

See more in Global; Innovation; Technology and Foreign Policy


CEO Speaker Series: Technology and Global Growth

Speaker: Bill McDermott
Presider: Peter Cook

SAP Co-Chief Executive Officer Bill McDermott shares his view on how SAP is dealing with the changing effects of technology on the global economy and on policymakers.

This meeting is part of the Corporate Program's CEO Speaker Series, which provides a forum for leading global CEOs to share their priorities and insights before a high-level audience of CFR members. The series aims to educate the CFR membership on the private sector's important role in the policy debate by engaging the global business community's top leadership.

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Navigating America’s Foreign Policy in an Uncertain World (Audio)

Speakers: Joseph S. Nye Jr. and Gideon Rachman
Presider: Richard N. Haass

Gideon Rachman, chief foreign affairs commentator at Financial Times, and Joseph S. Nye Jr., university distinguished service professor at Harvard Kennedy School, discuss new variables that are changing America's foreign policy strategies including the diffusion of power as technology empowers nonstate and nongovernmental actors, as well as the power transition from West to East.

See more in United States; Defense Strategy; Technology and Foreign Policy