The Norwich Peace and War Center, The Norwich University Cyber Institute, and NUARI; Information Warfare Research Lab (IWRL) have identified three major obstacles in today's information environment.
- Information warfare has emerged as a defining feature of international competition and conflict, yet the U.S. remains largely reactive and fragmented in its ability to understand and act in this domain.
- There is no standard model for educating undergraduates to be effective leaders and professionals in this threat environment.
- There is a shortage of available tools and analytical frameworks to accurately assess foreign malign influence.
The Mission of the IWRL is to:
- Bridge academic programming and applied research.
- Provide Norwich students with an experiential learning opportunity.
- Empower Norwich University students with the skills and knowledge needed to become leaders and professionals in IW and the cyber workforce.
- Equip students with the critical thinking and analytical skills necessary to better understand and anticipate what US adversaries are trying to achieve in the information space.
The IWRL's mission aligns with NUARI's mission to strengthen the pillars of a resilient society through rapid research, development, and education in cybersecurity, defense technologies, and information advantage (IA). NUARI works with partners to train and educate future leaders and continually innovate to advance knowledge and technologies in various fields.
This summer, the IWRL hosted a group of Information Warfare residents selected to assist our interdisciplinary team of researchers studying the weaponization of information in real-time. The group of students were funded by the Department of Defense Cyber Institute at Norwich University, and this specific line of effort is one of many examples of interdisciplinary experiences the Cyber Institute supports at Norwich. Throughout their time in the IWRL, the students gained hands-on experience, working with experts in the field of IA/IW. The students assisted our researchers by labeling media data for a supervised machine learning effort, and assisted in developing multidisciplinary frameworks to detect, measure, and predict malign influence generated by foreign threat actors in the information environment.
It is important to note that Norwich University was among the first institutions of higher learning to integrate cybersecurity into undergraduate education. Today, Norwich University and NUARI are advancing IW education, experiences, and research to lead in this growing field. Norwich students can now enroll in a series of IW courses. Additional applied research projects are being developed to educate students, allowing them to engage effectively in the information environment. As countering foreign malign influence continues to grow as a priority across defense, intelligence, and foreign policy communities, the time spent was an ideal learning opportunity for students, and we appreciate their added value.
Jakon is the Senior Marketing and Strategic Communications Specialist for Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI). He develops and executes digital and social media awareness initiatives promoting NUARI's mission of enabling a resilient society through rapid research, development, and education in cybersecurity, defense technologies, and information warfare.More posts by Jakon Hays