INSA Executive Vice President, John Doyon, sat down with Dr. John Beieler, ODNI’s Director of Science & Technology (S&T), for a discussion on the Intelligence Community’s top S&T priorities and the fundamental role of S&T in the Intelligence Community.
Dr. Beieler discussed the challenges associated with improving the speed and scale at which S&T advancements are made and implemented, especially given the constrained resource environment ODNI faces. He explained how this challenge has driven the organization to set strategic investment priorities and develop best practices to effectively communicate their needs to industry partners.
He noted how the organization divides their priorities into 19 technological domains to address the multiplicity of threats facing the community. They then identify capability gaps, translate these into science and technology needs, and then adjudicate these needs based on a set of risk criteria.
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The soon-to-be-released ODNI S&T needs document was extensively discussed, with Dr. Beieler saying it will be posted on ODNI’s website and distributed to partners in both the cleared and non-cleared industrial base and academia. He expressed enthusiasm in the document’s power to help shape industry investments and present opportunities for effective dialogue between ODNI S&T and industry partners.
Dr. Beieler also emphasized the importance of focusing on the strategic needs of the community as a whole, rather than on the immediate needs and priorities of a single organization. He highlighted the role of the Director of National Intelligence Science and Technology Committee (NISTC), which is a whole-of-government interface that brings together S&T directorates across the IC. He explained how the NISTC aims to invest in projects and programs that will satisfy the most requirements for the largest group of IC partners.
To conclude, Dr. Beieler highlighted the importance of effective partnerships between government and industry in order to keep pace with technological advancements, changes in the global competitive environment, and ultimately ensure that the IC is prepared for future threats, opportunities, and challenges.
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