A new report from the United States Studies Centre, Integrating deterrence Into defence science and technology cooperationlooks at how Australia and the United States can reap greater returns on their investments in shared science and technology, by focusing more on their shared deterrent objectives.

The report's author, Dr Frank L. Smith III, USSC Guest Contributor and Professor and Director of the Cyber and Innovation Policy Institute at the US Naval College, says that the relationship between deterrence and cooperation on defence science and technology between Australia and the United States is often implied, but rarely explained. 

  • View and download the report here.

Key points

  • For the two allies to improve deterrence in the Indo-Pacific through sharing more defence science and technology, both will need to communicate more over their shared strategic objectives, and exchange more people involved in research, development, and acquisition on both sides of the Pacific. 
  • Sharing defence science and technology also carries with it the risk of having shared knowledge or tools captured, exploited, or turned against the allies in an uncertain future. Accepting these risks requires building deeper trust within the alliance.
  • Australia and the United States can improve deterrence in the Indo-Pacific by sharing more defence science and technology. If well-executed, this kind of cooperation can help build the capability, capacity, and credibility that deter adversaries and assure allies.
  • There are tensions between improving deterrence through this kind of cooperation and catering to special interests, such as jobs and profit.

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