Biological Science & Technology: Relevance to International Security

So what does this mean in terms of
international security? Well first of all, it means that, we're
starting to have a pacing problem. In that, our capacity to manipulate
biological systems, might be outpacing our ability to respond
to those problems. And so we're, causing risks in being able
to essentially have this, the the biological science, become out of
our control. And in this type of situation, we see that
there's a strong dependence on the rate of being able to both, to develop our
detection and our analysis and response capacities, in addition to our ability,
ability to manipulate biological systems. And in this case, we're responding to a
few different classes of threats. We're responding to natural threats, as
well as engineered threats, and emergent threats. All right.
We already have diseases, biological diseases, that have existed for
a very long time. We also have precedence of of biology
being de, being weaponized. But, we also have accidents that may just
come from us trying to work with these dangerous biological agents, and
then accidentally releasing them. This means that many of our security
challenges are also coupled to safety challenges.

Just in terms of how we work with these
systems over time. Here we show a picture, of one such agent
which is Anthrax. So Anthrax naturally occurs, all the time. But many of you, may think about it in
terms of the Anthrax attacks that corresponded with
9/11 in terms of specific biological agents being shipped,
in the mail. But there was also recently incidents, one of those that are looking to develop
new ways to deal with Anthrax, if there was an attack accidentally
released it within an uncontrolled lab. And these are all related challenges that
we'll have to deal with, in terms of understanding how biology can
disrupt order, and are, and cause harm to peoples and to the
environment. One of the other challenges is just in the
inherently dual use nature of the technology.

In that, in getting better at biology, we
both get better at good applications. So for instance, being able to develop,
say a vaccine to an existing disease, but also bad applications, meaning we can
equip people to actually use that that technology to
develop from nefarious uses. And much more just mundane applications as
well. And so, the question is how do we
discriminate the technologies that may be the same, that equip both good and bad
use. And in particular, if we're looking at
that as a government's challenge, how do we control the development and
proliferation of technology, so we can mitigate its nefarious use? So how do we ensure, that the technology
is used for overwhelmingly good purposes, instead of
overwhelmingly bad purposes? And there's different ways to think about
control mechanisms.

[SOUND] You can think about control over
the materials. You think about control over the people. Then you could also think about control
over the information. And it isn't yet certain, which one of
these strategies, is going to be effective, especially in combination,
for dealing with biological threats..

You May Also Like