Alliance 21 Fellowship

Alliance 21 Fellowship

Alliance 21 Fellowship

The Alliance 21 Fellowship was established by the Perth USAsia Centre, the United States Studies Centre (USSC) and the United States Department of State to foster multi-disciplinary policy-oriented learning between the U.S. and Australia. The program involves a 3 to 10 month exchange of senior scholars and policy analysts between Australia and the U.S.. During the fellowships, Alliance 21 Fellows conduct policy-related research on strategic opportunities and challenges facing the Australia-U.S. Alliance in the Indo-Pacific.

benjamin flatgard- 2017 alliance 21 fellow

From 4-15 October 2017 the Perth USAsia Centre hosted 2017 Alliance 21 Fellow Mr Benjamin Flatgard. During his time in Perth Mr Flatgard spoke with members of government, academia and the private sector on cybersecurity issues.

Ben Flatgard is the founder and principal of cycise, a security technology company. Cycise is developing an innovative, software based approach to cyber risk management and incident response planning. Cycise also advises companies on enterprise security and secure product design. Ben served in the Obama Administration from 2009-2017. In his most recent post, as Director for Cybersecurity Policy on the National Security Council, Ben was responsible for leading policy development for the US government in areas related to cybersecurity in the financial services and healthcare sectors, consumer security, and emerging technology. Accomplishments include leading development and implementation of President Obama’s Cybersecurity National Action Plan; leading the implementation of the Cybersecurity Act of 2015; developing and launching “Lock Down Your Login,” a public awareness campaign designed to encourage the use of stronger authentication; and, spearheading the establishment of robust public-private partnerships in the healthcare and financial services sectors. Prior to his time at Treasury, Ben was the Special Assistant to the Secretary of Commerce and Director for Economics at the Presidential Personnel Office of the White House. Ben held a variety of roles on the Obama for America campaign from 2007-2008. He received his Masters in Politics from the University of Edinburgh.

'Against Complacency: Risks and Opportunities for the Australia-U.S. Alliance' BY 2016 Alliance 21 Fellow rICHARD FONTAINE

Australia may today figure more prominently in the thinking of American policymakers than at any time since the Second World War. The Australia-U.S. alliance is deeper, closer and healthier than ever before, and it is newly relevant to the region in which both countries discern their most vital future interests. But while the alliance generates benefits on a daily basis, enthusiastic policymakers on both sides have failed systematically to analyse and address a series of mid- to long-term risks to it.

In this paper published at the United States Studies Centre towards the end of his Alliance 21 Fellowship, Mr Fontaine outlines four risks and twelve opportunities to the Australia-U.S. alliance.

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richard fontaine - 2016 alliance 21 fellow

In 2016, Richard Fontaine, President of the Centre for a New American Security (CNAS) was appointed as the first Alliance 21 Fellow. During his time in Australia, he regularly engaged with senior strategic thinkers, influential analysts, intellectuals, and the general public in events in both Perth and Sydney.

Mr Fontaine has served as a Senior Advisor and Senior Fellow at CNAS from 2009 until 2012 and was previously a foreign policy advisor to Senator John McCain for more than five years. He has also worked at the State Department, the National Security Council and on the staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. A native of New Orleans, Mr Fontaine graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in International Relations from Tulane University. He also holds a M.A. in International Affairs from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, and he attended Oxford University. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and has been an adjunct professor in the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. He also served as the chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the United States.

At the end of the day, the people that ultimately get affected by cyberattacks are often people, individuals and just as it is difficult for individual agencies or departments within the government to combat nation states in terms of cybersecurity, imagine how difficult it is for an individual citizen to even wrap their heads around that concept. I think as we have talked about these rules and these laws and technology solutions in protecting businesses, sometimes the little guy gets left behind.

Mr Benjamin Flatgard
Former Director of Cybersecurity Policy in the White House National Security Council