In this National Security Podcast, Katherine Mansted finds out why states are increasingly engaging in acts of ‘economic warfare’ against each other, and how this affects private sector interests.

Technology and innovation are key drivers of social progress and economic prosperity. At the same time, emerging technologies can be ‘double-edged swords’ used to undermine security and democracy.

Innovation is also no longer something driven by genius individuals or major government projects.  It is a highly commercialised, globalised endeavour. This means that the private sector is often caught in the middle of nation-state power plays. It also finds itself increasingly on the front-lines of national security challenges – as a player, deliberate target, or collateral damage.

She seeks to understand how national security policymakers can work more closely with the private sector, and how democratic governments can preserve the advantages that come with an open and global innovation sector, while managing the risks that this openness will be exploited or weaponised.

Samantha Ravich of the Washington-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), is the chairman of FDD’s Center on Cyber and Technology Innovation and its Transformative Cyber Innovation Lab, as well as the principal investigator on FDD’s Cyber-Enabled Economic Warfare project. She’s also a tech entrepreneur, and former deputy national security adviser to Vice President Cheney. Recently Dr Ravich was appointed to the congressionally-mandated Cyberspace Solarium Commission.

Andy Kennedy is an Associate Professor of Policy and Governance at the ANU Crawford School of Public Policy. Published widely on comparative foreign policy issues, Dr Kennedy’s particular interest is China, India and the United States.

Katherine Mansted is a senior adviser at the National Security College and non-resident fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. Previously, she was a commercial solicitor with King & Wood Mallesons, a ministerial adviser to the federal government, and served as an Associate in the High Court of Australia.

Show notes | The following were referred to in this episode:

The Conflicted Superpower:  America’s Collaboration with China and India in Global Innovation

Foundation for Defense of Democracies:  Center on Cyber and Technology Innovation (CCTI)

We’d love to hear your feedback for this podcast series! Send in your questions, comments, or suggestions for future episodes to You can also Tweet us @APPSPolicyForum or find us on Facebook. The National Security Podcast and Policy Forum Pod are available on SpotifyiTunesStitcher, and wherever you get your podcasts. 

Back to Podcasts

Press Ctrl+C to copy