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 earn trust and confidence through openness, transparency, collaboration, and consistent follow through.
  • Integrity – We promote the public interest over self-advancement, holding ourselves and our work to the highest standards.
  • Inclusion – We confront the most pressing security and technology challenges by harnessing diverse perspectives and experiences.
  • Resilience – We embody flexibility and adaptability in everything we do – surging, resting, pivoting, and scaling to meet today’s mission needs, while maintaining readiness for tomorrow’s.

  • We embrace the velocity of 21st technological change, while managing the risk. This requires trust, a tactile understanding of the tech, and a deep national security policy expertise. That’s what sets us apart as a think tank.”

    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
  • Today’s technology risks can implicate our very way of life—including availability of essential services, U.S. economic competitiveness, and global security. We must urgently confront them head-on.”

    Steve Kelly Chief Trust Officer
  • IST is at the cutting-edge of tech and security, designing solutions to enhance the security of the global commons.”

    Emma Hollingsworth Director of Development and Partnerships
  • What sets IST apart is its ability to innovate. We are constantly pushing the boundaries of what is possible.”

    Nicole Mays Director of Human Resources
  • As countries and companies work to align their approaches to emerging technologies, it’s increasingly important to help leaders in technology and policy appreciate opportunities to work together towards shared goals.”

    Ben Purser Vice President for Geostrategic Risk
  • Megan Stifel headshot