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Defense and National Security

As nations engage in a race for global advantage in innovation, ITIF champions a new policy paradigm that ensures businesses and national economies can compete successfully by spurring public and private investment in foundational areas such as research, skills, and 21st century infrastructure. Our work on defense and national security covers topics such as weapons systems, innovation in defense and homeland security agencies, and the role of defense R&D in spurring innovation and competitiveness.


Time for a New National Innovation System for Security and Prosperity

Time for a New National Innovation System for Security and Prosperity

If the United States is to stay ahead of China militarily and technologically, it will need to put in place a new national innovation system that focuses on making U.S. advanced technology leadership—in both innovation and production—the central organizing principle of U.S. economic and national security policy.

More Publications and Events

April 17, 2024|Presentations

Prospects for US-Japan Economic Security Partnership and Countering Coercion

Stephen Ezell presents on the state of global geoeconomic competition and avenues for United States-Japan economic security collaboration for the Japan Foundation.

March 27, 2024|Blogs

Lina Khan’s Defective Critique of Boeing as “National Champion”

The chair of the Federal Trade Commission, Lina Khan, is using the crisis facing aerospace giant Boeing to press her case that “national champions” invariably behave badly because they are protected from competition. It is disappointing that Khan’s critique of Boeing reflects so little sectoral expertise and understanding of markets.

March 19, 2024|Events

An Era of Economic Warfare: Examining the EU’s Economic Security Strategy

Watch now for an expert panel discussion of Europe’s efforts and the implications for an allied approach to economic security in an era of economic warfare.

November 17, 2023|Blogs

How Europe Can Make Its Defense Industry a Global Competitor

The Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022 illustrated that Europe is neither as secure nor as prepared as it thinks it is. The European defense industry's fragmentation has come with higher costs and fewer R&D capabilities, making Europe less competitive and less safe.

October 24, 2023|Events

Securing Our Future: A Framework for Critical Technology Assessment

Please join ITIF, The Hamilton Project at Brookings, and the National Network for Critical Technology Assessment in a press release and showcase event launching the release of the report, Securing America’s Future: A Framework for Critical Technology Assessment.

October 2, 2023|Podcasts

Podcast: Getting Export Controls Right, With Kevin Wolf

Export controls exist at the perilous intersection of economic policy and national security. What could go wrong?

February 28, 2023|Blogs

Groupthink Is To Blame for Recent TikTok Bans

A growing number of countries have banned TikTok for alleged security threats. If the threat from China is real, a TikTok ban alone is too limited, but if the threat is overstated, these bans are a wasteful exercise in security theater. Either way, these bans are misguided.

February 3, 2023|Blogs

Time For Congress to Beef Up Funding for DIU’s National Security Innovation Capital Program

At the height of the Cold War, perhaps the most important U.S. national mission was to drive military innovation to ensure that the Soviet Union’s numerical superiority (in terms of soldiers and weapons) would not translate into superiority on the battlefield. The current geopolitical landscape presents a similar challenge in the United States’ rivalry with China, which is investing heavily to surpass the United States in technological capabilities to gain a global economic advantage and at least military parity in the Indo-Pacific region.

January 20, 2023|Blogs

America’s National Security Concerns Over China Shouldn’t Imperil Its Leadership in Technical Standards Development

In responding to China’s growing efforts to influence standards, the United States should not copy its approach to standards setting in closing off participation to foreign enterprises. Instead, the Biden administration and its like-minded trading partners in Australia, Japan, Singapore, and beyond should revert to first principles as agreed at the WTO and double down on their support for open, transparent, and industry-led standards development, which together demonstrates good governance for standards setting.

January 16, 2023|Op-Eds & Contributed Articles

When Facts About China Change, Elites Should Change Their Views Too

China’s aspiration to become the new global hegemon calls into question the “Washington Consensus” that free markets and unfettered globalization maximize U.S. and global welfare. But for true believers, that is unacceptable. So, the idea China is a threat must be destroyed intellectually.

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