UDT 2019: AI – Securty and Indsecurity in Underater Defence
On Day 3 of UDT 2019 in Stockholm, conference chairman Simon Williams, Clarion Defense & Security, invited Chris Norwood, Research Leader Acoustic Signature Mangement, DST Australia, Joel Brynielsson, Deputy Research Director, FOI Sweden, and Heiko Borchert to explore opportunities and pitfalls of the use of artificial intelligence (AI) for underwater defense. Heiko Borchert focused on the broader context that shapes the use of naval AI by addressing three key aspects: First, for technology to deliver tangible outcomes to navies, technology needs to be embedded in concepts of operations and concepts of employment. One avenue to tackle this challenge is to look at the contribution of technology to accomplish the principles of war, i.e. the set of key ideas that outline who nations apply military power. Second, AI and other technologies pose major challenges for the socio-cultural ecosystem of navies. These need to be addressed in order to provide the basis for navies to adapt new technologies. Finally, the advent of AI in the defense world will challenge the current defense industrial base in particular with regard to the role traditional defense OEM and new, non-defense entrants from the commercial AI might want to play. However, the current debate puts too much emphasis on the presumed added value of commercial AI for defense applications. Heiko Borchert was more cautious in underlyning that genuine defense AI will be needed because of the very specific defense and legal requirements for naval AI solutions.
European Defense Fund: Opportunities for Finland's Defense Industrial Base
The European Commission has launched several initiatives to advance European defense capabilities and improve the competitiveness of the European defense technological and industrial base. Prior to the launch of the European Defense Fund, which is foreseen for 2021, the Preparatory Action on Defense Research and the European Defense Industrial Development Program provide initial incentives. Both initatives offer exciting opportunities for Finland. But how can Finnish defense industrial and research partners best use these initiatives? What are the most promising capabilty and technology areas to address? And how to team up with other nations to form winning consortia? Blic, a Finnish public affairs consultancy, invited more than 30 experts to discuss these and other questions with Jyrki Katainen, Vice President of the European Commission, LTG Esa Pulkkinnen, Director General of the EU Military Staff, Sami Järvinen, Special Adviser at the Defense Command Finland, and Heiko Borchert
Flow Control: Expert Meeting at the Federation of German Industries
Today's international order has enabled and has been shaped by the free flow of goods, services, data, and capital and the unrestricted movement of people. These global exchanges have created strategic flows that have advanced prosperity and deepened connectedness. But the fraying international order gives rise to a more skeptical view on connectedness. Rather than emphasizing the benefits and opportunities, a prevailing zero-sum logic underlines and exploits the vulnerabilities of dependence. That is why nations, in particular ambitious emerging status quo challengers, are focusing increasingly on flow control. This constitutes a major challenge for all nations and companies depending on unhibited strategic flows. On invitation of Matthias Wachter, Head of Unit Security and Resources, Federation of German Industries (BDI), Heiko Borchert joined Michael Boschert, Deutsche Lufthansa AG, and the members of a BDI expert group to talk about the consequences and likely policy options to deal with flow controlFlow Control
The Arab Gulf Defense Pivot: New Paper Published in Comparative Strategy
Arab Gulf countries have been trying to set up a local defense industrial base for decades. Recently, these efforts have become much more serious due to a changing geostrategic context, local transformation, and the striving for a more active foreign policy role beyond the region. Today's Arab Gulf defense pivot rests on four pillars: broadening the traditional defense supplier base; establishing indigenous defense industries; setting up a defense industrial network within and beyond the region; enlarging foreign policy clout by way of defense exports, defense material donations, and third country defense funding. Despite progress, challenges regarding strategic and financial stability and local skill sets remain, argues Heiko Borchert in a new paper published in Comparative Strategy.The Arab Gulf Defense Pivot
Flow Control Rewrites Globalization
Today's international order has enabled and has been shaped by the free flow of goods, services, data, and capital and the unrestricted movement of people. These global exchanges have created strategic flows that have advanced prosperity and deepened connectedness. But the fraying international order gives rise to a more skeptical view on connectedness. Rather than emphasizing the benefits and opportunities, a prevailing zero-sum logic underlines and exploits the vulnerabilities of dependence. That is why nations, in particular ambitious emerging status quo challengers, are focusing increasingly on flow control. Flow control describes the will and the capability of an actor to define the framework and the operational conditions for strategic flows. As the paper discusses in detail, flow control is the testing ground on which a new grand systemic competition is emerging.Flow Control Rewrites Globalization
Global Supply Security and Geostrategic Competition
Speaking at the 2018 Single Risk Seminar of Credendo, a European credit insurance group, Heiko Borchert discussed the impact of geostrategic competition on global supply security. In his presentation he provided an overview of the emerging new grand strategic competition that unfolds in different areas. This grand strategic competition is about to affect all industry sectors, as Heiko Borchert underlined with reference to global supply chains, the global financial industry and the intensifying competition for access to high-technology.
Maritime Security in the Baltic Sea Region
Martime security in the Baltic Sea region was at the heart of an expert event organized by Atlas Elektronik in Helsinki. Heiko Borchert gave a presentation future opportunities for Finnish-German cooperation to advance the stability and prosperity of the region. He argued that bilateral economic ties are strong. But the increasing geostrategic competition affects both nations' Achilles heal: international trade. Vulnerabilities stemming from global connectedness can provide opportunities to deepen bialteral cooperation, Heiko Borchert said. His presentation focused on three particular topics: Strengthening a sound techno-economic foundation (e.g., regional supply security); taking care of the digital enablers (e.g., pan-regional cyber security cooperation); advancing defense and security cooperation (e.g., launching initiaties within the EU's PESCO format). A follow-on panel discussion provided an opporuntity to discuss Heiko Borchert's presentation in more detail. Panelists included Tytti Tuppurainen, Member of Parliament, former Ambassador René Nyberg, and Jukka Savolainen, Hybric Center of Excellence. The panel discussion was moderated by Admiral (ret.) Juhani Kaskeala.
FDI and National Security: Combining Public and Private Interests to Protect Swiss Interests
The most recent uptick in Chinese investments in Switzerland has prompted a debate about possible consequences for security and prosperity. So far, the discussion is black and white as state intervention is pitched against market-friendly approaches. This, however, misses the point. The world is about to enter a new phase of technonationalist protectionism. Dealing with this challenge will require a comprehensive approach that brings together all instruments – public and private. Three questions are key: How could foreign direct investments (FDI) endanger national security? Who should screen FDI? What to do if investments are declined? The Neue Zürcher Zeitung published the reponse by Heiko Borchert and Stefan Brem, Federal Office for Civil Protection (in German only).FDI and National Security: Combining Public and Private Instruments to Protect Swiss Interests
UDT 2018: Year of Engineering Talk and Future Undersea Market Opportunities
At UDT 2018 in Glasgow, Heiko Borchert gave the Year of Engineering (YOE) 2018 Talk and participated in a discussion on future undersea market opportunities.
In his YOE Talk Heiko Borchert provided a big picture overview of current geostrategic changes and their likely impact on the maritime domain and naval forces. In order to meet future requirements, naval forces will need to innovate. But military innovation is a complex undertaking that requires much more than technological excellence. Engineers, social scientists, management experts and lawyers and many others play a role in preparing naval forces for innovation. By bringing together all these experts, a holistic understanding of the need for innovation and the avenues to bring it to fruition can be established.
On the last day of the conference, Guy Stitt, AMI International, and RADM (ret.) Simon Williams, Chairman, Clarion Defense & Security, and Heiko Borchert explored future undersea market opportunities. Guy Stitt provided a broad overview of current and future procurement and modernisation plans. Heiko Borchert provided a case study on Arab Gulf undersea markets. He discussed Arab Gulf defense industrial ambitions and touched upon changes of the regions political and industrial networks.
Launch of the Vienna-based Center for Strategy, Economics & Technology
The Center for Strategy, Economics & Technology is an international group of experts that combines senior-level management and consulting expertise in public and private sectors with sound methodological know-how and innovative analytical instruments. CSET provides geostrategic and geoeconomic analyseis, develops and implements strategies, manages stakeholder relations, provices growth-oriented funding solutions, monitors technology trends, sets up research and industry consortia, and explores new product and market opportunities. Heiko Borchert is co-funder of CSET and runs the defense research activities in support of the Austrian Ministry of Defense.