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The National Security Podcast

ANU National Security College

Expert analysis, insights and opinion on the national security challenges facing Australia and the Indo-Pacific.

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Episodes

Insights into intelligence: statecraft, security, and truth
04-04-2024
Insights into intelligence: statecraft, security, and truth
What is the role of intelligence with respect to policy-making and national security? What is the concept of ‘truth to power’ and is it the right approach for intelligence assessment?  Should intelligence agencies to be more public and open about their threat assessments? What is the role of open-source intelligence (OSINT) in the intelligence community (IC)? And would the Australian IC stand to benefit from a standalone OSINT agency?  In this episode, Beth Sanner joins Peter Ford and Ben Scott to discuss how intelligence and statecraft interact and look at some key events to analyse the role of intelligence. Beth Sanner is a Senior Fellow at Harvard University Belfer Center and the former US Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Mission Integration. Peter Ford is a Senior Advisor at the ANU National Security College (NSC).  Ben Scott is a Senior Advisor at NSC.  Show notes:  Opinion piece by Beth Sanner on 'Truth to Power': A Former Presidential Briefer Rethinks Truth to Power (thecipherbrief.com) United States 2024 Annual Threat Assessment: ATA-2024-Unclassified-Report.pdf (dni.gov)  ASIO Director-General's Annual Threat Assessment 2024: Director-General's Annual Threat Assessment 2024 | ASIO Adapting Australian intelligence to the information age by Ben Scott: find out more  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Trouble in paradise? What’s next for the Australia-Solomon Islands relationship?
28-03-2024
Trouble in paradise? What’s next for the Australia-Solomon Islands relationship?
Why is the 2024 election so important for the Solomon Islands and what is the future of democracy in the country?What is the state of the Australia-Solomon Islands relationship in a post-RAMSI era?Can Australia be more ambitious in its provision of development assistance to the Solomon Islands? In this episode, Edward Cavanough joins Rory Medcalf to discuss the upcoming Solomon Islands election, the future of Australia’s relationship with the Solomon Islands and Edward’s new book Divided Isles: Solomon Islands and the China Switch. Edward Cavanough is the Chief Executive Officer at The McKell Institute, an Australian think-tank. He is also an experienced analyst and journalist.Professor Rory Medcalf AM is Head of ANU National Security College (NSC). His professional experience spans more than three decades across diplomacy, intelligence analysis, think tanks, journalism and academia. Show notes:·      Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: find out more [DA1] ·      Divided Isles: Solomon Islands and the China Switch: find out more·      Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI): find out more We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Are we still selling tickets? [DA1] Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
In conversation with the EU Special Envoy for the Indo-Pacific, Richard Tibbels
21-03-2024
In conversation with the EU Special Envoy for the Indo-Pacific, Richard Tibbels
Why is the EU stepping up its engagement in the Indo-Pacific?  In what ways does the EU collaborate with sub-regions within the Indo-Pacific? How can it diversify its relationship with Australia? And how does the EU reconcile with perceptions of it as a neo-colonial character in the Indo-Pacific? In this episode, Richard Tibbels joins Rory Medcalf to discuss the Europe Union’s engagement, challenges, and opportunities in the Indo-Pacific, and what it means for Australia.  Richard Tibbels is the EU Special Envoy for the Indo-Pacific.  Professor Rory Medcalf AM is Head of ANU National Security College (NSC). His professional experience spans more than three decades across diplomacy, intelligence analysis, think tanks, journalism and academia.  Show notes:  Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: secure your ticketsEU Indo-Pacific Forum 2024: address from Richard Tibbels, EU Special Envoy to the Indo-PacificEU Special Envoy to the Indo-Pacific Richard Tibbels in conversation with Professor Rory MedcalfEuropean Security Strategy  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
ASEAN-Australia ambitions: celebrating 50 years of dialogue
14-03-2024
ASEAN-Australia ambitions: celebrating 50 years of dialogue
In a world of geopolitical uncertainty, what is the significance of the recent ASEAN-Australia Special Summit? What realistically can be achieved between Australia and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)?   And what are the diplomatic and security challenges facing ASEAN nations? In this episode, Pichamon Yeophanton, Huong Le Thu and Don McLain Gill join Rory Medcalf on the sidelines of the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit to assess the state of ASEAN-Australia relations, and explore the opportunities and challenges facing deeper engagement.  Dr Pichamon Yeophantong is Head of Research and Associate Professor at the Centre for Future Defence and National Security, Deakin University at the Australian War College. Dr Huong Le Thu is the Asia Deputy Director at the International Crisis Group. Don McLain Gill is a Lecturer and a geopolitical analyst at the Department of International Studies, De La Salle University. Professor Rory Medcalf AM is Head of the ANU National Security College (NSC). His professional experience spans more than three decades across diplomacy, intelligence analysis, think tanks, journalism and academia.   Show notes:  Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: secure your tickets ASEAN-Australia Special Summit 2024: find out more Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative: find out more  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Fixing systems, not women: space and the Women, Peace and Security agenda
07-03-2024
Fixing systems, not women: space and the Women, Peace and Security agenda
How does the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda apply to space policy? Why is better integration of the WPS agenda into the space sector crucial for Australia?  And how does Australia compare to its international peers in this area?  In this episode, Cassandra Steer and Elise Stephenson join Danielle Ireland-Piper to discuss the importance of incorporating the Women, Peace, and Security agenda into the Australian space sector.  Dr Cassandra Steer is Deputy Director (Mission Specialists) at the Australian National University Institute for Space (InSpace).Dr Elise Stephenson GAICD is a Gender, Space and National Security Fellow at the ANU National Security College (NSC) and the Deputy Director at the ANU Global Institute for Women's Leadership.Dr Danielle Ireland-Piper is an Associate Professor and Academic Director at NSC.  Show notes:  Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: secure your tickets Australia’s National Action Plan for implementing the WPS agenda: find out more  Joint Project 9102 Phase 1: find out more  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Promise and peril: what to expect from the year of elections
29-02-2024
Promise and peril: what to expect from the year of elections
How could global politics shift, with more than half the world's population voting in elections this year? How should Australia – and other liberal democracies – navigate a path forward amid growing geopolitical tension and conflict? And what opportunities exist for Australia to deepen ties with its longstanding partners, despite increasing uncertainty and complexity? In this episode, Sophia Gaston and Gideon Rachman join Rory Medcalf to discuss upcoming elections around the world, escalating global conflicts, and what may be in store for the Australia-UK relationship, following the UK’s upcoming general election.Sophia Gaston is an Expert Associate at the ANU National Security College (NSC). She is also the Head of Foreign Policy and UK Resilience at the leading Westminster think tank, Policy Exchange. Gideon Rachman is the Chief foreign affairs commentator for the Financial Times. Professor Rory Medcalf AM is Head of NSC. His professional experience spans more than three decades across diplomacy, intelligence analysis, think tanks, journalism, and academia. Show notes:  Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: secure your tickets AUKUS Pillar II: find out more  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
‘Joined at the hip’: what next for the Australia-PNG relationship?
22-02-2024
‘Joined at the hip’: what next for the Australia-PNG relationship?
This episode is dedicated to the memory of Faith Medcalf (1935-2023), who devoted much of her life to school education and teacher training in the highlands of Papua New Guinea. Have Australians lost sight of the importance of the Australia-PNG relationship? What impact has Prime Minister Marape’s address to the Australian Parliament, and the new security agreement had on public perceptions? And how can a shared history help to further develop this complex and critical relationship?  In this episode, Ian Kemish, Oliver Nobetau and Nayahamui Rooney join Rory Medcalf to delve into the dynamics of Australia-Papua New Guinea bilateral relations, and explore how the two nations can strengthen their bond. Dr Nayahamui Rooney is a Lecturer with the School of Culture, History & Language in the College of Asia & the Pacific at the Australian National University (ANU).  Ian Kemish AM is an Expert Associate at the ANU National Security College (NSC), and the former Australian High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea.  Oliver Nobetau is an FDC Pacific Fellow at the Lowy Institute, on secondment from the Government of Papua New Guinea.  Professor Rory Medcalf AM is Head of NSC. His professional experience spans more than three decades across diplomacy, intelligence analysis, think tanks, journalism and academia.   Show notes:  Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: secure your tickets Prime Minister Marape’s address to parliament: PNG Prime Minister James Marape makes historic first address to Australian parliament | Sky News Australia Moving beyond the Bougainville Peace Agreement by Ian Kemish AM The state of play in PNG: A momentous start to 2024 by Oliver Nobetau 'Fabricated Security Space': The Manus Regional Processing Centre and gendered discourse between Australia and Papua New Guinea by Dr Nayahamui Rooney  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
An ocean of opportunities: why Australia should prioritise the Indian Ocean Region
15-02-2024
An ocean of opportunities: why Australia should prioritise the Indian Ocean Region
What is the strategic significance of the Indian Ocean to Australia? What challenges and opportunities does the region present for Australia and its partners? And how much can Australia realistically achieve in such a vast region? In this episode, Darshana Baruah, David Brewster and Shafqat Munir join Rory Medcalf to discuss the strategic importance of the Indian Ocean to Australia and the region.  Darshana Baruah is a Fellow with the Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace where she directs the Indian Ocean Initiative. David Brewster is a Senior Research Fellow at the ANU National Security College (NSC) and focuses on security in India and the Indian Ocean region, and Indo-Pacific maritime affairs. Shafqat Munir is a Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Bangladesh Centre for Terrorism Research at the Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies. Professor Rory Medcalf AM is Head of NSC. His professional experience spans more than three decades across diplomacy, Intelligence analysis, think tanks, journalism and academia.   Show notes:  Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: secure your tickets United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS): find out more Foreign Policy White Paper (2017): find out more  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Election watch 2024: what makes Indonesian democracy unique?
08-02-2024
Election watch 2024: what makes Indonesian democracy unique?
As Indonesian head to the polls on 14 February, what’s important to know about the nation’s conception of democracy and its political ecosystem?  Who are the key candidates in the presidential election — what do they represent? And what could be the implications of a change of government for security and diplomacy in the region?  In this episode, Natalie Sambhi and Gary Quinlan join Rory Medcalf to discuss the upcoming Indonesian elections, and how the outcome might impact bilateral ties with Australia and security in the region.  Dr Natalie Sambhi is a Senior Policy Fellow with Asia Society Australia and the Founder and Executive Director of Verve Research. Her research focuses on Indonesian military affairs, Indonesian defence policy and Southeast Asian security. Gary Quinlan AO is a former diplomat and public servant who served as Australia’s Ambassador to Indonesia, High Commissioner to Singapore and Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York. Professor Rory Medcalf AM is Head of ANU National Security College. His professional experience spans more than three decades across diplomacy, Intelligence analysis, think tanks, journalism and academia.   Show notes:  Securing our Future – national security conference, 9–10 April, 2024: secure your tickets  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
How the role of OSINT will change in a landscape of data abundance
25-01-2024
How the role of OSINT will change in a landscape of data abundance
What is open-source intelligence (OSINT)?How does big data influence our understanding of “good” intelligence? And does Australia need a dedicated OSINT agency in the National Intelligence Community? In this episode, Dr Miah Hammond-Errey and Ben Scott join Olivia Shen to discuss the increasing importance of open-source intelligence and big data in intelligence analysis, and the evolution required from intelligence agencies to keep up. Dr Miah Hammond-Errey is the Director of the Emerging Technology Program at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney. Ben Scott is a Senior Advisor at the ANU National Security College, and has over 25 years of experience in diplomacy, intelligence and think tanks, including stints at the Lowy Institute and the Office of National Intelligence.Olivia Shen is a Director at NSC on secondment from the Department of Home Affairs. Show notes: Securing our Future – national security conference, 9-10 April, 2024: secure your tickets ‘Adapting Australian intelligence to the information age,’ Big Data, Emerging Technologies and Intelligence: National Security Disrupted,Decoding good intelligence, Submission to the 2024 Independent Intelligence Review We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Why big tech is now in the geopolitical driver’s seat
11-01-2024
Why big tech is now in the geopolitical driver’s seat
Technological innovation is now one of the most consequential realms of geopolitical contestation. And in the era of big tech, the private sector has assumed power that once resided with governments. In response, we’ve seen a reassertion of industry policy, with governments trying to re-establish control. What happens to Australia’s national security when private companies, such as TikTok, are in the geopolitical driver’s seat?  And how can policymakers keep up with this ever-changing industry? In this episode of the National Security Podcast, Bec Shrimpton from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, joins Katherine Mansted in conversation to explore the rapidly changing landscape of big tech. Bec Shrimpton is the Director, Defence Strategy and National Security at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute.Katherine Mansted is a Senior Fellow at the ANU National Security College, and the Executive Director, Cyber Intelligence at CyberCXShow notes:  National Intelligence Community and National Security College Scholarship for Women: find out more  This episode was first published on Thursday, March 30, 2023.We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
The changing nature of violent extremism: challenges in a new age
04-01-2024
The changing nature of violent extremism: challenges in a new age
How has violent extremism evolved in recent decades?  Why do the words used to discuss and describe extremism matter so much? And what challenges will governments, communities and individuals face in combating these threats in the digital age? In this episode, Dr Emily Corner, Lydia Khalil, and Professor Michele Grossman join Gai Brodtmann to discuss the evolution of violent extremism, and how these changes create new challenges for policymakers. Dr Emily Corner is an Associate Professor at the Australian National University and has worked extensively on projects examining terrorism, radicalisation, and the mental disorders associated with terrorist behaviour.  Lydia Khalil is a Research Fellow on transnational challenges at the Lowy Institute and manages the Digital Threats to Democracy Project. Professor Michele Grossman AM is the Research Chair, Diversity and Community Resilience at Deakin University. She is a renowned expert in the areas of violent extremism, radicalisation, and community engagement. Gai Brodtmann is a Distinguished Advisor at the ANU National Security College, having previously served as a diplomat, defence consultant, Member of Parliament, Shadow Assistant Minister for Cyber Security and Defence and Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Defence. Show notes:  ANU National Security College academic programs: find out more   This episode was first published Thursday, September 14, 2023 We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Bots, trolls and geopolitics: examining the dark side of social media
28-12-2023
Bots, trolls and geopolitics: examining the dark side of social media
While social media has many benefits, there are a growing number of users – both human and machine – spreading harmful disinformation and misinformation on these networks.  What is the difference between disinformation and misinformation? How do different actors – both state and non-state – affect society and geopolitics using social media?  And what steps can be taken to overcome these challenges? In this episode of the National Security Podcast, Professor Darren Linvill from Clemson University and Associate Professor Will Grant from ANU, join David Andrews in conversation to discuss the state of disinformation and misinformation on social media. Dr Darren Linvill is a Professor and Co-director of the Clemson University Media Forensics Hub. He studies state-affiliated social media information operations. Dr Will J Grant is Associate Professor at The Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science at ANU, where he researches the interaction of science and politics. He podcasts on science at The Wholesome Show. David Andrews is a Senior Policy Advisor at the ANU National Security College. Show notes: ANU National Security College academic programs: find out more Darren Linvill’s article for Irregular Warfare Initiative covers some of the themes discussed in today’s episode: Custer’s last tweet: avoiding a digital little bighorn in the fight for hearts and minds.  This episode was first published on Thursday, April 20, 2023 We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
National security oversight: who watches the watchers?
14-12-2023
National security oversight: who watches the watchers?
How can whistle-blowers  contribute to Australia’s national security? What roles do parliamentary committees and the courts play in national security oversight? And how should national security and secrecy be balanced with human rights and transparency?    In this episode, Kieran Pender and Dominique Dalla-Pozza join Danielle Ireland-Piper to talk about the importance of accountability, and mechanisms of oversight, in Australia’s national security ecosystem.  Dr Danielle Ireland-Piper is an Associate Professor and Academic Director at the ANU National Security College. Kieran Pender is a senior lawyer at the Human Rights Law Centre. He is also an honorary lecturer at the ANU College of Law. Dr Dominique Dalla-Pozza is a Senior Lecturer at the ANU College of Law and has also recently joined the ANU National Security College.  Show notes:    ANU National Security College academic programs: find out more   The National Anti-Corruption Commission: find out more  Independent National Security Legislation Monitor report: find out more  We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Insights from Aotearoa: New Zealand's first National Security Strategy
30-11-2023
Insights from Aotearoa: New Zealand's first National Security Strategy
What prompted New Zealand (NZ) to develop its inaugural National Security Strategy? Will NZ’s change of government mean a change of strategy? And can increasing alignment between NZ and Australia be expected on key security issues? In this episode, Anna Powles and Suzannah Jessep join Jennifer Parker to talk about New Zealand’s first National Security Strategy and what it means for the region, Australia and New Zealand itself. Suzannah Jessep is the Director of Research and Engagement at the Asia New Zealand Foundation. Dr Anna Powles is a Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Defence and Security Studies at Massey University. Jennifer Parker is Director, Defence Policy at the ANU National Security College Show notes:   ANU National Security College academic programs: find out more  Aotearoa's National Security Strategy: find out more NZ Defence Policy and Strategy Statement 2023: find out more  Asia NZ Foundation report – Perceptions of Asia: find out more MFAT’s 2023 Strategic Foreign Policy Assessment: find out more New Zealand’s Security Threat Environment 2023: find out more Australia’s Defence Strategic Review 2023: find out more   We’d love to hear from you! Send in your questions, comments, and suggestions to NatSecPod@anu.edu.au. You can tweet us @NSC_ANU and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out on future episodes. The National Security Podcast is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.