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Geopolitics of Technology

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Artificial intelligence (AI), 5G, cybersecurity, robotics, semiconductors, space... Technology, especially in the digital domain, is now deeply affecting all human activities and, by extension, international relations. The resulting political, strategic, economic and social issues manifest themselves at multiple political scales involving states, international organizations and private companies. The dynamics of international competition and cooperation are transformed.

It is to respond to these challenges that Ifri launched the Geopolitics of Technology program in the fall of 2020, which builds on the work it already carried out on these subjects for several years. In 2023, it incorporates Ifri's activities on Space and, in 2024, becomes the Geopolitics of Technology Center.

The Center takes a resolutely European approach to international issues related to so-called critical technologies. Its work is organized around four cross-cutting themes:

  • Power: redistributions of power caused by new technologies, in particular digital; military and dual innovations; transformations of international competition;
  • Sovereignty: definition of critical infrastructures and technologies; industrial and innovation policies in strategic sectors; opportunities and risks associated with international value chains;
  • Governance: ethical and legal issues; interactions between companies, states, international organizations and users; public-private partnerships and GovTech;
  • Society: political and social impacts of technological innovations; risks and opportunities for the future of work, health, the fight against climate change; connectivity and economic development.

 

 

Laure DE ROCHEGONDE

Head of the Geopolitics of Technology Center

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Mathilde VELLIET

Research Fellow, Geopolitics of Technology Center

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Julien NOCETTI

Associate Fellow, Russia / Eurasia and Geopolitics of Technologies Centers

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Benjamin PAJOT

Associate Research Fellow,  Geopolitics of Technology Center

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27/04/2023

In April 2021, the Chinese government officially, but rather quietly, established a new state-owned enterprise (SOE) named China SatNet. Its mission: build out China’s “mega-constellation” program for low Earth orbiting internet satellites, known as Guowang (“national network”).

31/01/2023

European digital sovereignty has been made a priority by Ursula von der Leyen’s European Commission. Due to the privileged position of American companies in the European market, Brussels’ efforts towards digital sovereignty (on privacy, antitrust, data sovereignty, etc.) are closely...

12/12/2022

Open source is at the heart of the Internet infrastructure, of the software used by individuals or governments, and of the innovation processes of tech companies. Faced with threats to the security and sustainability of the open source model, governments are getting a hold of the topic, which...

16/11/2022
By: Jacques PRIOL, Joé VINCENT-GALTIE

Numerous smart city projects are emerging, guided by objectives of efficiency and improvement of public policies. All of them are based on intensive use of data and digital tools, but their concrete achievements take various forms. Some models are being exported and are becoming levers of...

12/10/2022

In line with the anti-Huawei diplomatic campaign of the Trump and Biden administrations, the United States has promoted an alternative: Open RAN, a concept defined by "open" network architectures. At the intersection of 5G geopolitics and standards, what risks and opportunities does Open RAN...

09
Nov
2023
Thursday 09 November 2023
from 14:30 to 17:45 - Conférences

Over the past two decades, increasing attention has been paid to digital infrastructure development and funding on the African continent. Whereas massive infrastructure gaps in funding persist, especially in rapidly growing urban areas, investments in telecom and digital infrastructure have...

27
Apr
2021
Tuesday 27 April 2021
from 08:30 to 11:30 - Seminars and Round-table Conferences

There is "no strategic autonomy without digital sovereignty", declared Charles Michel, President of the Council of the European Union in February 2021. In this logic, the European Commission calls for a more autonomous Europe in security-related areas such as digital policy and data...

30/11/2022
By: Mathilde VELLIET, quoted by Finbarr Bergminham in the South China Morning Post.
Most EU countries ‘don’t want to have to choose’ and ‘don’t want a world that is split into two camps’, says the bloc’s top diplomat. European governments have criticised Washington’s economic and China policies, and its leaders are scrambling to meet with President Xi Jinping.
27/10/2022
By: Mathilde VELLIET, quoted by Patrick Wintour in The Guardian

Disagreements have opened up about strategy when China is also seen as an existential threat. Western powers in the G7 group of nations are failing to coordinate their China strategies, senior western officials admit, adding that the need to do so has been given sharp impetus by Xi Jinping’s...