The White House’s updated top technologies for American innovation and national security

By Kevin P. Young, Principal Marketing Intelligence Analyst

The Biden-Harris White House earlier this year released an updated list of Critical and Emerging Technologies, also referred to as CETs, that can play an important role in our nation’s security. Last updated in 2020 under the Trump White House, this nonpartisan list of national priorities represents a subset of novel, advanced technologies with the potential to chart new pathways in American innovation and strengthen our national security.

They also represent a critical “roadmap” of strategic and tactical paths government contractors should consider in the areas of technologies, capabilities, solutions, products and services.

The National Security Strategic Guidance defines three key objectives:

  1. Protect the security of the American people
  2. Expand economic prosperity and opportunity
  3. Realize and defend democratic values.

At the recent Global Emerging Technology Summit, Lloyd J. Austin, U.S. Secretary of Defense said: “Innovation lies at the heart of American security. Nobody innovates better than the United States of America. But we can’t take that for granted … America’s integrated deterrence relies on both innovation and investment. Innovation requires the resources to develop new ideas and scale them appropriately. And investment pays off when it’s focused on the challenges of tomorrow, and not yesterday.”   

Alejandro N. Mayorkas, U.S. Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security comments on that: “Technology and homeland security are inextricably linked. A vast array of interdependent information technology networks, systems, services and resources enable communication, facilitate travel, power our homes, run our economy and provide essential government services. These systems provide enormous benefits to our society and economy, but they also create new risks and vulnerabilities. (We) must endeavor to keep pace with technology and leverage research and development toward homeland security goals.”

The Critical Technologies list identifies the technology areas that currently hold the greatest potential to further those objectives in the future–and, for the first time, it also includes several specific subfields under each technology area. A summary of the priorities includes:

  • Advanced Computing
  • Advanced Engineering Materials
  • Advanced Gas Turbine Engine Technologies
  • Advanced Manufacturing
  • Advanced and Networked Sensing and Signature Management
  • Advanced Nuclear Energy Technologies
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Autonomous Systems and Robotics
  • Biotechnologies
  • Communication and Networking Technologies
  • Directed Energy
  • Financial Technologies
  • Human-Machine Interfaces
  • Hypersonics
  • Networked Sensors and Sensing
  • Quantum Information Technologies
  • Renewable Energy Generation and Storage
  • Semiconductors and Microelectronics
  • Space Technologies and Systems

Wrote Dr. Heidi Shyu, DOD Under Secretary of Research & Engineering: “ (Our) priorities (also) include off-the-shelf systems wherever possible, both for cost and speed, rather than designing exquisite systems. … We have to pivot much faster …”

As always, the immixGroup Market Intelligence team is available to provide our government contractor channel partners with advice and counsel via tangible primary and secondary industry and academic research to help you “pivot faster.”

Keep up with the latest IT trends in public sector. Subscribe to immixGroup’s Government Sales Insider blog now.

Need help in identifying and targeting the right FY2023 opportunities? Connect with immixGroup’s Market Intelligence team to see how we can help.

About Kevin P. Young
Kevin P. Young is a 34-year veteran of the Federal Government Industry, serving in executive, professional, management consulting, speaking / training, and adjunct professor roles. He is recipient of the IBM Excellence Award, IBM Marketing Award, and – as a site team – Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, sponsored by U.S. Department of Commerce. He currently serves as Senior Market Intelligence Analyst for Arrow Electronics / immixGroup.

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