The Cognitive Crucible

By Information Professionals Association

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Description

The Cognitive Crucible explores all aspects of our generational challenge: Cognitive Security. It is the only podcast dedicated to increasing interdisciplinary collaboration between information operations practitioners, scholars, and policy makers.

Episode Date
#6 Ben Riley on Innovation and Risk
33:27

During this interview, we discuss with Ben Riley of Georgia Tech some of the ways that the Department of Defense engages with the research community. Additionally, we discuss risk appetite and the necessity for having an innovation mindset.

Interested listeners can check out Monitor: The Story of the Legendary Civil War Ironclad and the Man Whose Invention Changed the Course of History by James Dekay. Ben relates the story of the USS Monitor to today's innovation needs.

Since 2015, Mr. Ben Riley has been a principal research associate at the Georgia Institute of Technology (or Georgia Tech). Prior to joining Georgia Tech, Ben held senior leadership positions in the Department of Defense including the Office for Defense Research and Engineering, the Rapid Reaction Technology Office, and the Task Force for Combating Terrorism Technology. Mr. Riley also served in the United States Navy for over 30 years.

IPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to exploring the role of information activities, such as influence and cognitive security, within the national security sector and helping to bridge the divide between operations and research. Its goal is to increase interdisciplinary collaboration between scholars and practitioners and policymakers with an interest in this domain.

For more information, please contact us at communications@information-professionals.org.

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, 1) IPA earns from qualifying purchases, 2) IPA gets commissions for purchases made through slinks in this post.

Sep 15, 2020
#5 Robert Thibadeau on Lies
36:44

During this episode, we discuss with Bob Thibadeau his work on lies and implications for the Information Age.

*Correction: During the discussion, Dr. Thibadeau referred to neocortical computation as "bimodal" (e.g., vision and audition) but the more correct term is "intermodal" (the cognitive integration of all senses and actions).

Interested listeners may engage with his "Whole of Society" effort at The Internet Court of Lies.

Professor Bob Thibadeau has been affiliated with Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science since 1979. His expertise is in Cognitive Science, AI, and Machine Learning. Prof Thibadeau is one of the founding Directors of the Robotics Institute. And, he is author of the book "How to Get Your Lies Back: The Internet Court of Lies" and "Fiat Lies are Genocide on the Human Race," which is a brief summary available on Medium.com.

IPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to exploring the role of information activities, such as influence and cognitive security, within the national security sector and helping to bridge the divide between operations and research. Its goal is to increase interdisciplinary collaboration between scholars and practitioners and policymakers with an interest in this domain.

For more information, please contact us at communications@information-professionals.org.

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, 1) IPA earns from qualifying purchases, 2) IPA gets commissions for purchases made through slinks in this post.

Sep 08, 2020
#4 Tony Sgro on Education, Terrorism, and Information Operations
21:36

This episode focuses on the intersection between education, terrorism, and information operations. Tony Sgro shares his experiences at the epicenter of social media efforts to curb recruitment and radicalization by engaging with students worldwide in creative projects.

A great book which touches on some of these themes is: Messing with the Enemy by Clint Watts.

Mr. Tony Sgro is the Founder and CEO of EdVenture Partners. EVP builds industry-education partnerships for economic and societal challenges by connecting students, educators and industry leaders across 900 universities and 76 countries. Tony has more than 40 years of experience in marketing, advertising and promotion.

IPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to exploring the role of information activities, such as influence and cognitive security, within the national security sector and helping to bridge the divide between operations and research. Its goal is to increase interdisciplinary collaboration between scholars and practitioners and policymakers with an interest in this domain.

For more information, please contact us at communications@information-professionals.org.

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, 1) IPA earns from qualifying purchases, 2) IPA gets commissions for purchases made through slinks in this post.

Sep 01, 2020
#3 Chris MacPherson on Business Innovation
41:17

In this episode, we have a wide-ranging conversation with Chris MacPherson on cognitive security and how it relates to business and innovation to include comparative examples between corporate marketing and military information operations, as well as algorithmic versus human decision-making.

Listeners who are interested in a good book which touches upon these themes should check out: Farsighted by Steven Johnson.

We also mentioned this interesting example of a clever, low cost way of tainting information feeds. 99 smartphones are transported in a handcart to generate virtual traffic jam in Google Maps. Through this activity, it is possible to turn a green street red which has an impact in the physical world by navigating cars on another route to avoid being stuck in traffic.

Mr. Chris MacPherson has had a diverse career spanning academia, government and the private sector --  holding leadership, technical, and strategic roles focused on developing strategies, teams, capabilities and products to understand and augment decision-making. For example, at the global macro hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates, Chris applied data systems to enable transformational change. Prior to Bridgewater, he spent over a decade focusing on technology, defense and national security issues for the US Government, with roles at the National Security Agency, the White House Situation Room, and the Office of the Secretary of Defense. He currently oversees government programs, marketing, and strategic initiatives at Shift.org, a San Francisco based labor marketplace for veterans. He is also an Adjunct Faculty member at Princeton University's Keller Center for Innovation in Engineering Education, and he runs Shadestream Innovations, an innovation consulting business.

IPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to exploring the role of information activities, such as influence and cognitive security, within the national security sector and helping to bridge the divide between operations and research. Its goal is to increase interdisciplinary collaboration between scholars and practitioners and policymakers with an interest in this domain.

For more information, please contact us at communications@information-professionals.org.

Disclosure: 1) As an Amazon Associate, IPA earns from qualifying purchases, 2) IPA gets commissions for purchases made through slinks in this post.

Sep 01, 2020
#2 Austin Branch, the US Army's First Information Operations officer
26:23

In this episode, we discuss the evolution of information operations since the early 1990s, the state of our national strategic efforts to compete in the information environment, and strategic approaches related to cognitive security.

Some books mentioned in this episode include:

Mr. Austin Branch is an Information Operations pioneer, practitioner and leader. He holds the distinction of being the Army’s very first Information Operations officer when that career field was just forming, and while in uniform, he served at the tactical, operational, and strategic levels. Since retirement from the Army, Mr. Branch served in several senior executive civilian roles within the Department of Defense which focused on information operations, cyber, and counter-terrorism. Most recently, he co-founded the Information Professionals Association or IPA.

IPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to exploring the role of information activities, such as influence and cognitive security, within the national security sector and helping to bridge the divide between operations and research. Its goal is to increase interdisciplinary collaboration between scholars and practitioners and policymakers with an interest in this domain.

For more information, please contact us at communications@information-professionals.org.

Disclosure: 1) As an Amazon Associate, IPA earns from qualifying purchases, 2) IPA gets commissions for purchases made through slinks in this post.

Sep 01, 2020
#1 Rand Waltzman on Cognitive Security
18:59

Dr. Rand Waltzman is one of the founding members of the Information Professionals Association. During this conversation, we discuss how he coined the term, "cognitive security." Dr Waltzman considers the information threat to be like a chronic disease which has no cure; however, it may be managed. Towards the end of the conversation, Dr. Waltzman suggests that those who are interested to learn more about the origins of modern propaganda should check out the video documentary "Century of the Self." Some other excellent resources include: Computational Propaganda: Political Parties, Politicians, and Political Manipulation on Social Media by Woolley and Howard, as well as Propaganda by Bernays.

Dr. Rand Waltzman is Deputy Chief Technology Officer at RAND Corporation. Previous positions include acting CTO and Associate Director of Research of the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, Program Manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Chief Scientist in the Distributed Systems Lab at Lockheed Martin, and Associate Professor of Computer Science at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden. He started his career at the Teknowledge Corporation, the world’s first commercial Artificial Intelligence company. He is also co-founder of the Information Professionals Association.

IPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to exploring the role of information activities, such as influence and cognitive security, within the national security sector and helping to bridge the divide between operations and research. Its goal is to increase interdisciplinary collaboration between scholars and practitioners and policymakers with an interest in this domain.

For more information, please contact us at communications@information-professionals.org.

Disclosure: 1) As an Amazon Associate IPA earns from qualifying purchases, 2) IPA gets commissions for purchases made through slinks in this post.

Sep 01, 2020
The Cognitive Crucible Trailer
01:22

Welcome to The Cognitive Crucible. I’m your host, John Bicknell. Each week, I will be examining aspects of our generational challenge: Cognitive Security. The Cognitive Crucible bridges the gap between military information operators, researchers, authors, and public policy makers.

For the foreseeable future, the global security landscape will be significantly impacted by the information environment. Through the potency and reach of worldwide social media and sister messaging platforms, both nation states and actors can achieve outcomes formerly restricted to traditional military and security methods.

Recognizing this reality, the mission of the Information Professionals Association is to provide a highest-level forum for information professional practitioners and scholars to interact, collaborate and develop #wholeofsociety or #wholeofgovernment solutions that enhance the cognitive security of the US and its allies.

Please encourage people in your network to subscribe to the Cognitive Crucible, participate, and join our growing membership. Find out more at: information-professionals.org. Or, follow us on Twitter: @InfoProAssn.

Aug 11, 2020