Welcome to Tech Unmanned, a new podcast hosted by Lindsey Sheppard and Kaitlyn Johnson at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Technology is at the heart of just about every defense issue and modernization priority for the United States defense enterprise. Tech Unmanned features guests with both policy expertise and technical expertise in order to break through the national security jargon and technology hand-waving to get to the core of the technical realities of these emerging capabilities, benefits to development, and the barriers to success. Tech Unmanned is released every other Tuesday, starting on June 29, 2021.
The One with the Navy
Join Kaitlyn and guest co-host Rose Butchart for the final episode of Season 1! This engaging conversation focused on the Navy’s approach to developing and acquiring emerging technologies. Kaitlyn and Rose are joined by Ms. Joan Johnson, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Navy RDT&E and CAPT Ben Van Buskirk, Director at NavalX. This conversation was a culmination and deep dive into acquisition, autonomy, engaging with small businesses, and the future of warfare.
CSIS Defense-Industrial Initiatives Group: 2021 Defense Acquisition Trends: Topline DoD Trends after a Half Decade of Growth
CSIS Defense-Industrial Initiatives Group: Department of Defense Other Transaction Authority Trends: A New R&D Funding Paradigm?
Department of the Navy’s Strategy for Intelligent Autonomous Systems
25/01/2022 • 55 minutes 16 seconds
The One with the Army
Join Kaitlyn and guest co-host Army Colonel Danielle Ngo for this critical conversation of how the U.S. Army is approaching emerging technologies. Kaitlyn and Danielle are joined by Major General Richard Coffman, Brigadier General Glenn Dean, and Dr. Kimberly Sablon, all of Army Futures Command. The conversation focuses on the Army’s people-first approach, and how emerging technologies will enable our soldiers on and off the battlefield.
Major General Richard Coffman, Director, Next Generation Combat Vehicle
Brigadier General Glenn Dean, Program Executive Officer (PEO) Ground Combat Systems
Dr. Kimberly Sablon, Director for Science and Technology at the Army Futures Command
11/01/2022 • 49 minutes 33 seconds
Under the Sea (and Surface) Autonomy
A special episode release from Tech Unmanned! As part of the 2021 #NSGSCon (with NatSecGirlSquad) in December, Kaitlyn recorded a live-podcast with guest expert Dr. Regan Campbell, the General Manager of Autonomous and Advanced Naval Platforms at L3 Harris. Picking up where we left off with the previous autonomy episode, this conversation dives deep into the challenges and opportunities of naval autonomous platforms including onboard data processing and threat detection, maneuverability, and the Navy’s ability to integrate these systems into their current force structure.
17/12/2021 • 44 minutes 30 seconds
The One with the Air Force
Join Kaitlyn and guest co-host Becca Wasser (fellow in the Defense Program at the Center for a New American Security) as they discuss the emerging technology priorities of the Department of the Air Force. They are joined by Major General Heather Pringle, Commander at the Air Force Research Laboratory and Colonel Nathan Diller, Director of AFWERX.
Battle Networks and the Future Force: Part 1 by Todd Harrison
Battle Networks and the Future Force: Part 2 by Todd Harrison
The Air Force of the Future by Todd Harrison
Opportunities for Students & Faculty with AFRL
AFRL Scholars Program
14/12/2021 • 59 minutes 17 seconds
Shakespeare's The STEMpest
Join Kaitlyn and Lindsey as they talk about the future of the workplace and the STEM workforce.
Expert guests, Dr. Vint Cerf, Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist for Google, and Jennifer Anastasoff, Executive Director and Co-founder at Tech Talent Project, talk with the Tech Unmanned hosts about the nuances about the critical nature of the STEM workforce. Does DoD and the national security community have the authority, motivation, and development pipeline to sustain and engage a future STEM workforce? Hear what Vint and Jennifer have to say, as well as a wrap up from Lindsey and Kaitlyn breaking down the conversation further.
To Compete, Invest in People: Retaining the U.S. Defense Enterprise’s Technical Workforce by Lindsey R. Sheppard, Morgan Dwyer, Melissa Dalton, and Angelina Hidalgo (https://www.csis.org/analysis/compete-invest-people-retaining-us-defense-enterprises-technical-workforce)
National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence Final Report
30/11/2021 • 48 minutes 53 seconds
When D.C. Met Silicon Valley
Guests Amelie Koran, formerly the Senior Technology Advisor at Splunk and now Director of External Technology Relations at Electronic Arts (EA), and Lauren Bedula, Managing Director at Beacon Global Strategies and an Executive Board Member with the Silicon Valley Defense Group, debunk myths, highlight areas of tension, and offer insights into how to improve the relationship between two cultures that are often framed as worlds apart.
Executive Order (EO) on Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity (https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions/2021/05/12/executive-order-on-improving-the-nations-cybersecurity/)
16/11/2021 • 53 minutes
Can't Buy Me Software
Episode ten of Tech Unmanned dives deep into software acquisition and the challenges of iteration, adaptability, and implementation. Lindsey and Kaitlyn talk with two incredible experts, Courtney Barno and Enrique Oti, about the challenges of software acquisition for the Department of Defense. If you’re asking yourself why this is so hard or if you work in or with DoD and still have to use Windows 5 or something from a decade ago, this episode is for you.
Defense Innovation Board’s Software Acquisition and Practices (SWAP) Study (https://innovation.defense.gov/software/)
Acquisition of Software-Defined Hardware-Based Adaptable Systems by Andrew Hunter, Schuler Moore, and Maura Rose McQuade (https://www.csis.org/analysis/acquisition-software-defined-hardware-based-adaptable-systems)
GAO Study on DOD Software Acquisition: Status of and Challenges Related to Reform Efforts (https://www.gao.gov/assets/gao-21-105298.pdf)
The Air Force Digital Century Series: Beyond the Buzz
02/11/2021 • 57 minutes 26 seconds
I Feel the Need… the Need for 5G
The ninth episode of Tech Unmanned explores the national security and foreign policy implications of 5G. Our two experts, Milo Medin and Jaisha Wray cut through the hype and advertising to talk with Kaitlyn and Zhanna about what 5G really is, the revolution it might inspire, and how the United States is working with its allies and partners to bring this capability into your hands.
Beyond 5G, a CSIS event: https://www.csis.org/events/beyond-5g-standards-sixth-generation-networks
"Accelerating 5G in the United States", (2021) https://www.csis.org/analysis/accelerating-5g-united-states
"How 5G will Shape Innovation and Security: A Primer", (2018) https://www.csis.org/analysis/how-5g-will-shape-innovation-and-security
National Strategy to Secure 5G Implementation Plan: https://www.ntia.gov/5g-implementation-plan
19/10/2021 • 44 minutes 7 seconds
The eighth episode of Tech Unmanned explores electronic warfare and the electromagnetic spectrum. Lindsey and Kaitlyn interview Whitney McNamara, a technical advisor in the Department of Defense, and Todd Harrison from CSIS. As Whitney says, “Every modern weapons system from radios to satellites, to ships to aircraft, all depend on the spectrum to function.” This discussion on the electromagnetic spectrum and the ways to counter or interfere with access to communications is critical and deserves more focus in defense and national security policy conversations.
Winning the Invisible War: Gaining an Enduring U.S. Advantage in the Electromagnetic Spectrum by Bryan Clark, Whitney M. McNamara, Timothy A. Walton
Battle Networks and the Future Force by Todd Harrison
The Kill Chain by Chris Brose
05/10/2021 • 53 minutes 58 seconds
Tech Unmanned Trailer
Welcome to Tech Unmanned, a new podcast hosted by Lindsey Sheppard and Kaitlyn Johnson at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Technology is at the heart of just about every defense issue and modernization priority for the United States defense enterprise. Tech Unmanned features guests with both policy expertise and technical expertise in order to break through the national security jargon and technology hand-waving to get to the core of the technical realities of these emerging capabilities, benefits to development, and the barriers to success.
Tech Unmanned is released every other Tuesday, starting on June 29, 2021.