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Event - Beyond the SCIF: Biosecurity and the Weaponization of Artificial Intelligence

January 25, 2024

Past Event

Schedule

Washington, DC

Event Schedule

Welcome & Introduction by Roger Zakheim

11:00 AM ET

Framing Remarks by Congressman Brad Wenstrup

11:10 AM ET

Panel Discussion

11:15 AM - 12:15 PM ET

Event - Beyond the SCIF: Biosecurity and the Weaponization of Artificial Intelligence

January 25, 2024

Past Event

Schedule

Washington, DC

Event Schedule

Welcome & Introduction by Roger Zakheim

11:00 AM ET

Framing Remarks by Congressman Brad Wenstrup

11:10 AM ET

Panel Discussion

11:15 AM - 12:15 PM ET

The rapid, global spread of the COVID-19 virus exposed the fragility of pandemic warning systems and response mechanisms in America and around the world. Our lack of preparedness for the next biosecurity threat leaves us vulnerable to adversaries pursuing biological weapons programs, especially with access to advanced capabilities like artificial intelligence and machine learning.

While AI promises to accelerate breakthroughs in science and public health, it also threatens to democratize technology that can make it easier to create and use deadly bioweapons. To prove a point, scientists have tasked large language models and other AI software to pull from massive amounts of open-source data and invent lethal novel pathogen strains in a matter of hours. As this technology and other powerful tools like gene editing proliferate, our biodefense is increasingly at risk—both at the hands of strategic competitors like China in its race for AI and biotech dominance and from non-state actors that can now harness technology to design bioweapons without sophisticated bioengineering expertise.

The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Ronald Reagan Institute’s National Security Innovation Base Program will gather a panel of experts for "Beyond the SCIF: Biosecurity and the Weaponization of Artificial Intelligence" to discuss the threats to our biosecurity posed by technologies like AI, the state of our biodefense, and what concrete actions policymakers can take in light of these new vulnerabilities.

The panel will be moderated by Congressman Brad Wenstrup, OH-02, who serves on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and Chairs the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic, and will feature panelists Mr. Hirsh Jain, Head of Public Health at Palantir Technologies; Dr. Michelle Rozo, Vice Chair of the National Security Commission on Emerging Biotechnology; Senator Jim Talent, Former Vice Chair of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism and Advisory Board Member of the RRI National Security Innovation Base Program; and the Hon. Ken Wainstein, Under Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis at the Department of Homeland Security.

To attend this event in-person at the Ronald Reagan Institute in Washington, D.C., please register below. Virtual attendance is also offered through the virtual registration link below.

in-person registrationvirtual registration