About the Institute for Security and Technology

Outpacing Emerging Global Security Risks

As new technologies present humanity with unprecedented capabilities, they can also pose unimagined risks to global security. The Institute for Security and Technology’s (IST) mission is to bridge gaps between technology and policy leaders to help solve these emerging security problems together. Uniquely situated on the West Coast with deep ties to Washington, DC, we have the access and relationships to unite the best experts, at the right time, using the most powerful mechanisms.

Our portfolio is organized across three analytical pillars: 

  1. Geopolitics of Technology: anticipating the positive and negative security effects of emerging, disruptive technologies on the international balance of power, within states, and between governments and industries;
  2. Innovation and Catastrophic Risk: providing deep technical and analytical expertise on technology-derived existential threats to society;
  3. Future of Digital Security: examining the systemic security risks of societal dependence on digital technologies. 

IST aims to forge crucial connections across industry, civil society, and government to solve emerging security risks before they make deleterious real-world impact. By leveraging our own expertise and engaging our trusted networks, we offer a unique problem-solving approach with a proven track record.

Some of our successes have taken the form of named initiatives, such as the Ransomware Task Force, now in its second year of impact. Others, like the Digital Cognition & Democracy Initiative, are focused on convenings between a diverse set of stakeholders, laying the groundwork for future solutions. In all cases, IST aims to force disparate communities to engage and come together.

Vision

The innovation ecosystem is effectively empowered to promote global security.

Mission

To solve emerging security threats by creating a bridge between technology and policy leaders.

Our Values

  • Trustworthiness: We develop trust with our partners and colleagues across governments, technology, and civil society through open communication, information transparency, and collaboration that is rooted in respecting diverse perspectives and approaches.
  • Integrity and Accountability: We value integrity over self-interest, and hold ourselves and our work to the highest standards of accountability.
  • Perspective: We value diversity of thought and experience over uniform, homogeneous thinking. We believe that only when empowered by such perspectives can we effectively address the most pressing emerging security and technology challenges.
  • Resilience: As an organization that seeks to develop and implement technical and policy solutions, we embody resilience in everything that we do, and are capable of pivoting or scaling when necessary. We work with a sense of urgency, with the intent to inform and operationalize policy and technical solutions to meet emerging security threats that have short and long-term implications.

  • So often the solutions already exist, it is just that the policy and technical experts don’t connect. That’s where we come in. We know everybody. And if something new is needed – we can make that happen, too.”

    Philip Reiner Chief Executive Officer
  • To have enduring beneficial impact, technology must account for security. Our work seeks to push that interest to the top of the list.”

    Megan Stifel Chief Strategy Officer
  • Our research is designed to provide practical applications to real-world problems.

    Alice Hunt Friend Vice President for Research and Analysis
  • IST creates the space to convene the best of the best across industry, government, and civil society.”

    Alexa Wehsener Deputy Director of Defense Strategy and Research
  • IST has allowed me to research at the cutting edge of emerging defense technologies. The team, projects, and partnerships here are the reasons that such great research can be done.”

    Leah Walker Senior Defense Associate
  • Megan Stifle headshot