Plenary Session 1: The Homeland Enterprise Perspectives from the State House
Homeland security is a whole-of-nation effort, with roles and responsibilities across every echelon of government. How does a governor see the enterprise from the state house? Is the “locally executed; state managed; federally support” model viable for the future?
Plenary Session 2: Fireside Chat
The 2020 Cyberspace Solarium Commission Report published 82 recommendations to improve the federal government’s readiness for major cyber attacks. One year on, over 40% of those recommendations have been implemented or are on track to implementation, including the creation of the office of National Cyber Director. As a Commissioner, the first NCD helped to draft the recommendation. How is implementation going? With so may other cybersecurity leaders at the federal level, what is the vision for this role?
Plenary Session 3: The Homeland Enterprise Now and the Way Ahead
Founded as a direct result of the attacks on 9/11, The Department of Homeland Security has undergone changes and added several missions to its original mandate. How is the federal government’s third largest department gearing up for the challenges out country faces now and in the foreseeable future?
Plenary Session 4: Looking Inward Addressing Domestic Violent Extremism
The Homeland Security Enterprise was built with an initial focus on external threats and natural disasters. In the past 20 years, most attacks in the US have come from domestically radicalized individuals and we are seeing an increase in hate groups motivated toward violence. How are we working to address radicalization of all stripes? Can the federal counterterrorism enterprise support domestic operations while keeping with our national core values?
Plenary Session 5: Policing Reform
Our society is shifting rapidly and our longstanding institutions are trying to keep pace. New technologies, better training, and efforts to diversify our nation’s police forces have all had positive impact. Everyday we call on our police to be more than law enforcement officers and expect them to also respond to nonviolent calls relating to mental illness, addiction, and other social ills. Still we hear for calls to “defund.” Is it time to ask more of our police and cut resources? What technologies might we better leverage in our policing?
Plenary Session 6: Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Protection
Cyberspace has gone from buzzword to full operational domain since the founding of DHS. CISA embodies the purest nature of homeland security – partnership across multiple sectors and echelons. As threats in cyberspace increase in prominence and sophistication, is the current partnership arrangement correct? Does the federal government need to assert more regulatory authority? Or should we take a more laissez-faire approach? How can we forecast the next threat and mitigate risks now?
Plenary Session 7: The Future of Border Security
As threats at the nation’s land, air, and sea borders continuously evolve, it is important to adopt new technologies that provide us greater surveillance and security and assured identity of the traveling public. What role should technology play in securing our physical borders and approaches? Are we taking advantage of the best technologies available? How can public-private partnerships everage the advantages of emerging technology? Where do we see opportunities for additional R&D?
Plenary Session 8: Crypto Currencies and Ransomware
In 2021, authorities, industry, and the public saw a dramatic increase in publicly acknowledged ransomware attacks. From critical infrastructure to healthcare systems to local governments, the attacks are growing more severe and frequent and no sector or industry seems invulnerable to these attacks. Cryptocurrency has been the payment means of choice by many of the attackers, raising questions as to whether cryptocurrency is an enabler of such attacks and what can be done in response. In the case of Colonial Pipeline, the US Government was able to trace and recoup much of the payment. With the rise in ransomware and the adoption of cryptocurrency in the legitimate economy, how should regulators, financial institutions, law enforcement, and the virtual asset community respond? Are there avenues of creative partnership to address these risks, and what can be done to ensure hackers find it more difficult to profit from ransomware?
Plenary Session 9: Information Disorder and the Role of Civics
The Earth is flat; the moon landing was faked; COVID vaccines change your DNA; Pineapple belongs on pizza?! Our open society is constantly bombarded with disinformation, some of it even deliberately driven by malign actors. But with trust in institutions of all types eroding, who can our society turn to for truth? When only a third of those raised and educated here can pass the US citizenship test, do we even truly understand the functions of our own government and society?
Plenary Session 10: Modernizing Homeland Security Enterprise R&D
Incredible technologies from artificial intelligence, robotics, and quantum computing have given us a set of new capabilities, opportunities, and at times threats. But given the nature of the Homeland Security Enterprise - broad and multi-echeloned - defining a strategy for research can be challenging. Technology of the future will surely aid emergency response, operational reliability, and our nation’s resilience. So how might we design a comprehensive R&D strategy incorporating all partners and stakeholders?
Plenary Session 11: Addressing the Push Factors of Migration
The Organization of American States works to build peace and justice and defend the sovereignty of the nations of the Western Hemisphere through four pillars - democracy, human rights, security, and development. These pillars are challenged now more than ever and the effects spill over into the US. How can the regional international community rally to address our common issues?