Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller in Beijing: “We need to defend ourselves in the digital age, and in the age of artificial intelligence”

  • 24 Oct. 2018 - 26 Oct. 2018
  • |
  • Last updated: 06 Nov. 2018 16:27

The NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller visited Beijing on 24-26 October 2018 and participated in 8th Xiangshan Forum. Speaking at a special session on Artificial Intelligence, Gottemoeller highlighted how technological advances provide challenges as well as opportunities and discussed how NATO is working to ensure it stays ahead of the curve. “We do this by working together, among our 29 members and with our partners and international organisations. And of course, we work with the private sector to take full advantage of the latest innovations and to maintain our technological edge”.

NATO’s Strategic Command located in Norfolk Virginia, Allied Command Transformation, is leading NATO’s work on innovation and disruptive technologies, including big data, artificial intelligence, and robotics. “We know that we cannot fight tomorrow’s threats with today’s tools”, Gottemoeller said.  “Defending ourselves is no longer about just looking at a map and deciding where to position troops and equipment. We need to defend ourselves in the digital age, and in the age of artificial intelligence. That work is incredibly complex. And we are thinking about it in terms of both policy and practice”.

The Deputy Secretary General said that NATO continues to adapt in order to remain at the forefront of new technologies. “On the positive side of the ledger, we are drawing on AI-related technologies to improve our response to natural disasters”, she said. “At our disaster response exercise in Serbia in early October, NATO successfully tested disaster relief tools powered by artificial intelligence. These are incredibly powerful means to help save lives. We had drones flying over the site where the disaster occurred. They sent the information collected to other machines to process the images and the data collected in order to identify victims on the ground at record speed”.

During her visit, the Deputy Secretary General met with senior Chinese officials and delivered a lecture at the PLA National Defence University. Gottemoeller also met with officials from NATO member and partner countries.