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book coverEmerging and Readily Available Technologies and National SecurityA Framework for Addressing Ethical, Legal, and Societal Issues   (CSTB ,BLS ,CSTL ,CEES)
Released 2014-03-12

Emerging and Readily Available Technologies and National Security is a study on the ethical, legal, and societal issues relating to the research on, development of, and use of rapidly changing technologies with low barriers of entry that have potential military application, such as information technologies, synthetic biology, and nanotechnology. The report also considers the ethical issues associated with robotics and autonomous systems, prosthetics and human enhancement, and cyber weapons. These technologies are characterized by readily available knowledge access, technological advancements that can take place in months instead of years, the blurring of lines between basic research and applied research, and a high uncertainty about how the future trajectories of these technologies will evolve and what applications will be possible. Emerging and Readily Available Technologies and National Security addresses topics such as the ethics of using autonomous weapons that may be available in the future; the propriety of enhancing the physical or cognitive capabilities of soldiers with drugs or implants or prosthetics; and what limits, if any, should be placed on the nature and extent of economic damage that cyber weapons can cause. This report explores three areas with respect to emerging and rapidly available technologies: the conduct of research; research applications; and unanticipated, unforeseen, or inadvertent ethical, legal, and societal issues. The report articulates a framework for policy makers, institutions, and individual researchers to think about issues as they relate to these technologies of military relevance and makes recommendations for how each of these groups should approach these considerations in its research activities. Emerging and Readily Available Technologies and National Security makes an essential contribution to incorporate the full consideration of ethical, legal, and societal issues in situations where rapid technological change may outpace our ability to foresee consequences.

Report in Brief
book coverGeotargeted Alerts and Warnings: Report of a Workshop on Current Knowledge and Research Gaps   (CSTB)
Released 2013-09-19

Geotargeted Alerts and Warnings: Report of a Workshop on Current Knowledge and Research Gaps is the summary of a February, 2013 workshop convened by the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board of the National Research Council to examine precise geotargeting of public alerts and warnings using social media. The workshop brought together social science researchers, technologists, emergency management professionals, and other experts to explore what is known about how the public responds to geotargeted alerts and warnings, technologies and techniques for enhancing the geotargeting of alerts and warnings, and open research questions about how to effectively use geotargeted alerts and warnings and technology gaps. This report considers the potential for more precise geographical targeting to improve the effectiveness of disaster alerts and warnings; examines the opportunities presented by current and emerging technologies to create, deliver, and display alerts and warnings with greater geographical precision; considers the circumstances where more granular targeting would be useful; and examines the potential roles of federal, state, and local agencies and private sector information and communications providers in delivering more targeted alerts.

book coverProfessionalizing the Nation's Cybersecurity Workforce?: Criteria for Decision-Making   (CSTB)
Released 2013-10-01

Professionalizing the Nation's Cybersecurity Workforce? Criteria for Decision-Making considers approaches to increasing the professionalization of the nation's cybersecurity workforce. This report examines workforce requirements for cybersecurity and the segments and job functions in which professionalization is most needed; the role of assessment tools, certification, licensing, and other means for assessing and enhancing professionalization; and emerging approaches, such as performance-based measures. It also examines requirements for the federal (military and civilian) workforce, the private sector, and state and local government. The report focuses on three essential elements: (1) understanding the context for cybersecurity workforce development, (2) considering the relative advantages, disadvantages, and approaches to professionalizing the nation's cybersecurity workforce, and (3) setting forth criteria that can be used to identify which, if any, specialty areas may require professionalization and set forth criteria for evaluating different approaches and tools for professionalization. Professionalizing the Nation's Cybersecurity Workforce? Criteria for Decision-Making characterizes the current landscape for cybersecurity workforce development and sets forth criteria that the federal agencies participating in the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education—as well as organizations that employ cybersecurity workers—could use to identify which specialty areas may require professionalization and to evaluate different approaches and tools for professionalization.

book coverPublic Response to Alerts and Warnings Using Social Media: Report of a Workshop on Current Knowledge and Research Gaps   (CSTB)
Released 2013-01-04

Following an earlier NRC workshop on public response to alerts and warnings delivered to mobile devices, a related workshop was held on February 28 and 29, 2012 to look at the role of social media in disaster response. This was one of the first workshops convened to look systematically at the use of social media for alerts and warnings—an event that brought together social science researchers, technologists, emergency management professionals, and other experts on how the public and emergency managers use social media in disasters.In addition to exploring how officials monitor social media, as well as the resulting privacy considerations, the workshop focused on such topics as: what is known about how the public responds to alerts and warnings; the implications of what is known about such public responses for the use of social media to provide alerts and warnings to the public; and approaches to enhancing the situational awareness of emergency managers. Public Response to Alerts and Warnings Using Social Media: Report of a Workshop on Current Knowledge and Research Gaps summarizes presentations made by invited speakers, other remarks by workshop participants, and discussions during parallel breakout sessions. It also points to potential topics for future research, as well as possible areas for future research investment, and it describes some of the challenges facing disaster managers who are seeking to incorporate social media into regular practice.