Publications

CSET produces evidence-driven analysis in a variety of forms, from informative graphics and translations to expert testimony and published reports. Our key areas of inquiry are the foundations of artificial intelligence — such as talent, data and computational power — as well as how AI can be used in cybersecurity and other national security settings. We also do research on the policy tools that can be used to shape AI’s development and use, and on biotechnology.

Report

Harnessed Lightning

Ryan Fedasiuk Jennifer Melot Ben Murphy
| October 2021

This report examines nearly 350 artificial intelligence-related equipment contracts awarded by the People’s Liberation Army and state-owned defense enterprises in 2020 to assess how the Chinese military is adopting AI. The report identifies China’s key AI defense industry suppliers, highlights gaps in U.S. export control policies, and contextualizes the PLA’s AI investments within China’s broader strategy to compete militarily with the United States.

Applications and implications


China


Filter publications
Data Brief

China’s State Key Laboratory System

Emily S. Weinstein Channing Lee Ryan Fedasiuk Anna Puglisi
| June 2022

China’s State Key Laboratory system drives innovation in science and technology. These labs conduct cutting-edge basic and applied research, attract and train domestic and foreign talent, and conduct academic exchanges with foreign counterparts. This report assesses trends in the research priorities, management structures, and talent recruitment efforts of nearly five hundred Chinese State Key Labs. The accompanying data visualization maps their geographical locations and host institutions.

Data Brief

China’s Industrial Clusters

Anna Puglisi Daniel Chou
| June 2022

China is banking on applying AI to biotechnology research in order to transform itself into a “biotech superpower.” In pursuit of that goal, it has emphasized bringing together different aspects of the development cycle to foster multidisciplinary research. This data brief examines the emerging trend of co-location of AI and biotechnology researchers and explores the potential impact it will have on this growing field.

Analysis

Chokepoints

Ben Murphy
| May 2022

China’s "Science and Technology Daily," a state-run newspaper, published a revealing series of articles in 2018 on 35 different Chinese technological import dependencies. The articles, accessible here in English for the first time, express concern that strategic Chinese industries are vulnerable to any disruption to their supply of specific U.S., Japanese, and European “chokepoint” technologies. This issue brief summarizes the article series and analyzes the Chinese perspective on these import dependencies and their causes.

Analysis

Quad AI

Husanjot Chahal Ngor Luong Sara Abdulla Margarita Konaev
| May 2022

Through the Quad forum, the United States, Australia, Japan and India have committed to pursuing an open, accessible and secure technology ecosystem and offering a democratic alternative to China’s techno-authoritarian model. This report assesses artificial intelligence collaboration across the Quad and finds that while Australia, Japan and India each have close AI-related research and investment ties to both the United States and China, they collaborate far less with one another.

Analysis

Preserving the Chokepoints

Andre Barbe Will Hunt
| May 2022

Offshoring the production of semiconductor manufacturing equipment would remove an important source of leverage over China and make the United States more dependent on other countries for some of the most important inputs to semiconductor manufacturing. This brief explores the factors driving U.S. SME firms to offshore production and what can be done to slow or reverse offshoring.

Data Brief

A Competitive Era for China’s Universities

Ryan Fedasiuk Alan Omar Loera Martinez Anna Puglisi
| March 2022

This brief illuminates the scale of Chinese government funding for higher education, science, and technology by exploring budget and expense reports for key government organizations and 34 of China’s most elite “Double First Class” universities. Chinese political leaders view elite universities as key components of the country’s military modernization, economic growth, and soft power; a situation that presents security risks for international partners.

Data Brief

Comparing U.S. and Chinese Contributions to High-Impact AI Research

Ashwin Acharya Brian Dunn
| January 2022

In the past decade, Chinese researchers have become increasingly prolific authors of highly cited AI publications, approaching the global research share of their U.S. counterparts. However, some analysts question the impact of Chinese publications; are they well respected internationally, and do they cover important topics? In this data brief, the authors build on prior analyses of top AI publications to provide a richer understanding of the two countries’ contributions to high-impact AI research.

Analysis

Harnessed Lightning

Ryan Fedasiuk Jennifer Melot Ben Murphy
| October 2021

This report examines nearly 350 artificial intelligence-related equipment contracts awarded by the People’s Liberation Army and state-owned defense enterprises in 2020 to assess how the Chinese military is adopting AI. The report identifies China’s key AI defense industry suppliers, highlights gaps in U.S. export control policies, and contextualizes the PLA’s AI investments within China’s broader strategy to compete militarily with the United States.

Analysis

Robot Hacking Games

Dakota Cary
| September 2021

Software vulnerability discovery, patching, and exploitation—collectively known as the vulnerability lifecycle—is time consuming and labor intensive. Automating the process could significantly improve software security and offensive hacking. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s Cyber Grand Challenge supported teams of researchers from 2014 to 2016 that worked to create these tools. China took notice. In 2017, China hosted its first Robot Hacking Game, seeking to automate the software vulnerability lifecycle. Since then, China has hosted seven such competitions and the People’s Liberation Army has increased its role in hosting the games.

Analysis

AI Education in China and the United States

Dahlia Peterson Kayla Goode Diana Gehlhaus
| September 2021

A globally competitive AI workforce hinges on the education, development, and sustainment of the best and brightest AI talent. This issue brief compares efforts to integrate AI education in China and the United States, and what advantages and disadvantages this entails. The authors consider key differences in system design and oversight, as well as strategic planning. They then explore implications for the U.S. national security community.