Command, Control and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analysis – CCICADA Research Group Lab Meeting -Thursday, November 30, 2017

Command, Control and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analysis

CCICADA Research Group Lab Meeting – CCICADA Seminar Series in Homeland Security

Date/Time:  Thursday, November 30, 2017/11:00 am to 12:00 noon
Location:  4th Floor Conference Room – 433, Computing Research & Education Building (CoRE)
Busch Campus, Rutgers, the State University

FEATURED SPEAKER: Dr. Mitchell D. Erickson, Science Advisor, Science and Technology Directorate, U. S Department of Homeland Security, Washington, DC

Title: The Long View: Technological Opportunities and Threats in Our Homeland Security Future


Change has always been with us and always will. In our lifetimes we have seen marvelous and scary changes.  Since the turn of the century we have adopted cell phones and adapted to the current devices that are now our newspaper, music, TV, map, alarm clock, wallet and so much more.  The smart phone has wrought changes of monumental proportions in communication, behavior, and information flow.  For better AND for worse.

In the 21st century, the rate of change has accelerated both in the speed with which we adopt and the impact on our personal and professional lives.  Smart phones provide a recent perspective.

Our homeland security technology future categories to be discussed include:

  • Who, What, When, Where?
  • Moving People and Stuff
  • Moving Electrons
  • Infrastructure
  • Integration

For example, within the category of moving people and stuff, connected and autonomous vehicles are in the news daily.)  CAVs are coming much faster than we think and will impact each of us at a personal level.  And, our society will change.  These changes will extend across all types of moving vehicles (land, sea, and air), all types of transport (commuting, violin lessons, deliveries, freight, visiting relatives…), parking, economics, insurance, the car industry, signage, signaling and more.

The security threats of autonomous vehicles include hacking, failure, and using a vehicle as a weapon.  The security opportunities include dramatic reduction in collisions and thus deaths, less law enforcement and reduced infrastructure needs.

A few other future changes to consider:

  • Risk Assessment using Artificial Intelligence
  • Sensors, Detectors, and Data Analysis
  • Biometrics and Identity management
  • Infrastructure for Security
  • Advanced Manufacturing / Automation/ 3D printing/ 4D printing

As with all horizon scanning, some of these changes we can foretell, some we can guess at, and some will be total surprises.  Change is coming.  Fast.  And, yes, there are some very queasy aspects to this future.  We face three choices:  lead, follow, or ignore these changes.  Clearly, any R&D organization must choose “lead.”

Discussion will focus on S&T’s strategies for scanning our technology horizon and proactively notifying leadership and users to inform their planning and strategic investments.  Dr. Erickson would very much like CCICADA’s perspective on this daunting task.

Mitchell D. Erickson scans the horizon for trends in our exciting technology future that may provide tools to mitigate threats and enhance homeland security.

He facilitates DHS’ Science & Technology activities with science/technology performers (laboratories, universities, industry, and international partners).  He develops partnerships.  He evaluates current practices that could be improved by application of new technologies, models, systems, or approaches and where S&T can contribute to help close homeland security capability gaps.

He shapes goals, methods and strategies for advancing programs and designs approaches for integrating activities.

Dr. Erickson synthesizes a broad range of emerging issues, trends, and threats and opportunities related to the technical, economic, social, or ecological environment of the homeland security enterprise that includes DHS, other federal agencies, and state, local, tribal, and territorial response agencies.

Mitchell Erickson has extensive experience in management of technical organizations.  From 1996-2007, he was the Laboratory Director at Environmental Measurements Laboratory (EML; now “National Urban Security Technology Laboratory”), U.S. Department of Homeland Security.  The laboratory was in the U.S. Department of Energy until transferred by Congress when DHS was formed in 2003.  Beginning in 2002, he led the complex transfer of EML from DOE to DHS, involving significant mission and administrative changes.

Dr. Erickson has been responsible for management of research programs.  As Associate Director of Argonne National Laboratory’s Applied Research and Development Program Office, he co-directed a team that managed a $40M environmental technology development program.  He has also been principal investigator on projects ranging up to several million dollars and dozens of staff.

Dr. Erickson’s research in environmental science and analytical chemistry has developed novel technologies, identified sources and fates of pollutants, investigated chemical reaction conditions, and produced analytical methods.  His research has historically emphasized multidisciplinary projects and tends toward more applied research. Dr. Erickson’s expertise in persistent organic pollutants is sought in a consulting capacity, specifically in the areas of sampling, analysis, presence, partition, and transport in environmental, biological, industrial product, and human matrices.  Chemicals of interest include polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs), and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDFs).  In 1996 Dr. Erickson received R&D-100 Award and later a “Top 40” Award for one of the 40 best R&D-100 Awards for the forty years of the awards program and a Federal Laboratory Council Award for Excellence in Technology Transfer.

Dr. Erickson earned a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Iowa in 1976. He has published two books–Analytical Chemistry of PCBs, (two editions) and Remediation of PCB Spills.  Dr. Erickson holds one patent.  He is the author of over 150 technical publications and has given over 200 technical presentations.

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