1st Edition

Emerging Technologies and International Security Machines, the State, and War

Edited By Reuben Steff, Joe Burton, Simona R. Soare Copyright 2021
    312 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    312 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book offers a multidisciplinary analysis of emerging technologies and their impact on the new international security environment across three levels of analysis.

    While recent technological developments, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), robotics and automation, have the potential to transform international relations in positive ways, they also pose challenges to peace and security and raise new ethical, legal and political questions about the use of power and the role of humans in war and conflict. This book makes a contribution to these debates by considering emerging technologies across three levels of analysis: (1) the international system (systemic level) including the balance of power; (2) the state and its role in international affairs and how these technologies are redefining and challenging the state’s traditional roles; and (3) the relationship between the state and society, including how these technologies affect individuals and non-state actors. This provides specific insights at each of these levels and generates a better understanding of the connections between the international and the local when it comes to technological advance across time and space

    The chapters examine the implications of these technologies for the balance of power, examining the strategies of the US, Russia, and China to harness AI, robotics and automation (and how their militaries and private corporations are responding); how smaller and less powerful states and non-state actors are adjusting; the political, ethical and legal implications of AI and automation; what these technologies mean for how war and power is understood and utilized in the 21st century; and how these technologies diffuse power away from the state to society, individuals and non-state actors.

    This volume will be of much interest to students of international security, science and technology studies, law, philosophy, and international relations.

    Introduction: Machines, the State and War

    Reuben Steff, Joe Burton and Simona R. Soare

    1. Histories of Technologies: Society, the State and the Emergence of Postmodern Warfare

    Joe Burton

    Section I: The Machine and the International System

    2. Emerging Technologies and the Chinese Challenge to US Innovation Leadership

    James Johnson

    3. Artificial Intelligence: Implications for Small States

    Reuben Steff

    4. Artificial Intelligence and the Military Balance of Power: Interrogating the US-China Confrontation

    Reuben Steff and Khusrow Abbasi

    5. Mitigating Accidental War: Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems and De-Escalation Strategies

    Aiden Warren and Alek Hillas

    Section II: Emerging Technologies, the State and the Changing Character of Conflict

    6. Politics in the Machine: The Political Context of Emerging Technologies, National Security and Great Power Competition

    Simona R. Soare

    7. Inequitable Internet. Reclaiming Digital Sovereignty through the Blockchain

    Andrew Colarik and MAJ Richard Wilson

    8. The Evolution of the Russian Way of Informatsionnaya Voyna

    Sean Ainsworth

    9. US Grand Strategy and the Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles during the George W. Bush Administration

    Francis Okpaleke and Joe Burton

    Section III: The State, Society and Non-State Actors

    10. Cyber Autonomy: Automating the Hacker – Self-healing, Self-adaptive, Automatic Cyber Defense Systems and their Impact to the Industry, Society and National Security

    Ryan K. L. Ko

    11. The International Security Implications of 3D Printed Firearms

    Pete Cook

    12. Deepfakes and Synthetic Media

    Curtis Barnes and Tom Barraclough

    13. Cyber Threat Attribution, Trust and Confidence, and the Contestability of National Security Policy

    William Hoverd

    14. Disrupting Paradigms through New Technologies: Assessing the Potential of ‘Smart’ Water Points to Improve Water Security for Marginalized Communities

    Nathan John Cooper

    15. "Just wrong", "disgusting", "grotesque": How to Deal with Public Rejection of New Potentially Life-saving Technologies

    Dan Weijers

    Conclusion: Society, Security & Technology: Mapping a Fluid Relationship

    Simona R. Soare


    Reuben Steff is Senior Lecturer at the New Zealand Institute for Security and Crime Science and Political Science Programme, University of Waikato, New Zealand.

    Joe Burton is Senior Lecturer at the New Zealand Institute for Security and Crime Science, University of Waikato, and a Marie Curie fellow (MSCA-IF) at Université Libre de Bruxelles.

    Simona R. Soare is Senior Associate Analyst at European Union Institute for Security Studies (EUISS), working on transatlantic defence.