March 23, 2017 - Meeting in Washington DC: Decadal Survey of Social and Behavioral Sciences and Applications to National Security

Stephen Marrin's picture


MARCH 23-24, 2017

Web Page:
(Webcast will be posted in this location prior to March 23, 2017)

When: March 23, 2017 - March 24, 2017 (9:15 AM Eastern)
(The second day, March 24 is a closed session meeting open only to staff and committee members.)
WhereKeck Center (Room 106) • 500 Fifth St. NW, Washington, DC 20001 and Webcast
Topics: Behavioral and Social Sciences; National Security and Defense
Activity: Decadal Survey of Social and Behavioral Sciences and Applications to National Security

The first meeting of the Committee on a Decadal Survey of Social and Behavioral Sciences and Applications to National Security will be held on March 23-24, 2017, at the National Academies Keck Center, located at 500 5th Street NW, Washington, D.C. The open session will be held in Keck 105 and 106 on March 23 from 9:15 a.m. to approximately 5:15 p.m.  The committee members and staff will meet on the second day (March 24, 2017) for a closed session meeting.  

Open Session Meeting Objectives (Day One):

• Introduce committee members and sponsor representatives.
• Provide a brief introduction to the National Academies and the study process.
• Gather information through first day presentations from the intelligence community and social and behavioral science researchers.

Statement of Task

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will carry out a decadal survey on the social and behavioral sciences (SBS) in areas relevant to national security. An ad hoc committee will be appointed to conduct the survey with the goal of identifying opportunities that are poised to contribute significantly to the intelligence community’s analytic responsibilities. The study will identify opportunities throughout the social sciences (e.g., sociology, demography, political science, economics, anthropology) and from behavioral sciences (e.g. psychology, cognition, neuroscience). The committee will work with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) and security community members to understand government needs and expectations. The final consensus report will be based on the committee's consideration of broad national security priorities; relevant capabilities of elements within the security community to support and apply findings from social and behavioral science; cost and technical readiness; likely growth of research programs; emerging data, procedures, personnel, and other resources; and opportunities to leverage related research activities not directly supported by government. The committee will specify a range of relevant work that could be useful to the intelligence community for their consideration in developing future research priorities.

The committee's primary tasks will be: 

  1. Assess progress in addressing selected major social and behavioral scientific challenges that might prove useful to national security. Include discussion of approaches that are gaining strength and those that are losing strength. Where possible, rely on published meta-analyses.
  2. Identify SBS opportunities that can be used to guide security community investment decisions and application efforts over the next 10 years.
  3. Specify approaches to facilitate productive interchange between the security community and the external social science research community.

The survey will engage members of the SBS community to generate ideas for research that may benefit national security now and in the ensuing decade. The total project duration will be 36 months from summer 2016 to summer 2019. The committee’s final report will be available to the public. All work will be conducted at the unclassified level. The work is overseen by the Board on Behavioral, Cognitive, and Sensory Sciences (BBCSS), part of the Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education (DBASSE) of the Academies in collaboration with the newly-forming Intelligence Community Studies Board (ICSB) in the Division of Engineering and Physical Sciences.