The Public Policy Challenges of Artificial Intelligence


Associated Program:
John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum
Jason Matheny
Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

A Conversation with
Dr. Jason Matheny
Director, Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA)
Eric Rosenbach (Moderator)
Co-Director, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, HKS
Director, Defending Digital Democracy Project
Chief of Staff, United States Department of Defense (2015-2017)
Assistant Secretary of Defense, United States Department of Defense (2014-2015)

Dr. Jason Matheny joined Eric Rosenbach for a conversation on the public policy issues concerning the current and future state of artificial intelligence. Dr. Matheny spoke on the possibilities and dangers created by AI-controlled weapons systems. He also addressed issues of public privacy and enhanced intelligence capabilities presented by the introduction of AI in the intelligence field.

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Dr. Jason Matheny became IARPA's director in 2015, after serving as a program manager, associate office director, and office director. Before IARPA, he worked at Oxford University, the World Bank, the Applied Physics Laboratory, the Center for Biosecurity and Princeton University, and is the co-founder of two biotechnology companies. Dr. Matheny holds a Ph.D. in applied economics from Johns Hopkins University, an M.P.H. from Johns Hopkins University, an M.B.A. from Duke University and a B.A. from the University of Chicago. He received the Intelligence Community's Award for Individual Achievement in Science and Technology.

Eric Rosenbach is Co-Director of the Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and a Kennedy School Public Policy Lecturer. Rosenbach ​previously served as the Pentagon’s ​Chief of Staff from 2015-17 and Assistant Secretary of Defense for Global Security​, responsible for leading all aspects of the Department’s cyber activities and other key areas of defense policy.  On Capitol Hill, Rosenbach ​served as national security advisor for then​-​Senator Chuck Hagel. In the private sector, Rosenbach worked as the Chief Security Officer for a large European telecommunications firm.  He also led the cybersecurity practice of a global management consulting firm, advising the executives of Fortune 500 companies on strategic risk mitigation strategies.
Rosenbach is a former Army intelligence officer and Commander of a telecommunications intelligence unit. He has co-authored several books on national security.  He was a Fulbright Scholar. He has a JD from Georgetown, an MPP from Harvard and is a proud graduate of Davidson College.