Emerging Technology Observatory

The Emerging Technology Observatory creates high-quality data resources to inform critical decisions on emerging technology issues. Drawing on deep technical capabilities, subject matter expertise, and user research, we collect, link and transform scattered information from diverse sources to better understand the global emerging technology landscape. Our website, currently in development, will provide access to the ETO’s unique visualizations, dashboards, and analytic tools, offering insight for decisions in national security, R&D strategy, economic policy, and other domains. A nonprofit initiative of the Center for Security and Emerging Technology, the ETO serves public- and private-sector decision makers worldwide.

Why is the ETO needed? There has never been more information available on global science and technology. Cutting-edge research and innovation are unfolding around the world, driven by academic labs, governments, large corporations, startups, and many others. This diverse global enterprise generates data in an equally diverse range of forms and sources, from news reports and scholarly articles to commercial datasets, patents, social media, and more.

In theory, this rich data could drive better-informed decisions on emerging technology issues, but in practice, many organizations struggle to use it effectively. Taking full advantage of complex commercial and public-domain emerging technology data can require sustained effort and specialized capabilities, from data science, software engineering, and open-source collection to quality control and user support. Even the best-resourced organizations often lack these capabilities.

What is the ETO doing? With CSET’s experience and unique resources as a foundation, the Emerging Technology Observatory is developing an online platform for high-quality information on the global technology landscape, including visualizations, dashboards, and other web-based tools drawing on diverse sources of emerging technology data. We’re taking on the work of building and maintaining these resources so that our users can focus on analysis, communication, and action. The ETO will help organizations with diverse missions and perspectives understand and act on critical emerging technology issues. Established in January 2022, the ETO is currently building its initial suite of offerings, including updates to CSET’s powerful Map of Science and novel analytic tools related to artificial intelligence, advanced semiconductors, and other emerging technologies. We expect a fall 2022 beta launch for our website. To learn more, please contact us at cset_eto@georgetown.edu.