Summary of the 2018 Department Of Defense Artificial Intelligence Strategy

Home / Articles / External / Government


February 25, 2019 | Originally published by Date Line: February 25 on

Harnessing AI to Advance Our Security and Prosperity

The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) protects our nation by deterring war and winning the nation’s wars when deterrence fails. In fulfilling this mission, we have always been at the forefront of technological advances to ensure an enduring competitive military advantage against those who threaten our security and safety. Artificial intelligence (AI) is one such technological advance. AI refers to the ability of machines to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence – for example, recognizing patterns, learning from experience, drawing conclusions, making predictions, or taking action – whether digitally or as the smart software behind autonomous physical systems. AI is poised to transform every industry, and is expected to impact every corner of the Department, spanning operations, training, sustainment, force protection, recruiting, healthcare, and many others. With the application of AI to defense, we have an opportunity to improve support for and protection of U.S. service members, safeguard our citizens, defend our allies and partners, and improve the affordability and speed of our operations. Other nations, particularly China and Russia, are making significant investments in AI for military purposes, including in applications that raise questions regarding international norms and human rights. These investments threaten to erode our technological and operational advantages and destabilize the free and open international order. The United States, together with its allies and partners, must adopt AI to maintain its strategic position, prevail on future battlefields, and safeguard this order. We will also seek to develop and use AI technologies in ways that advance security, peace, and stability in the long run. We will lead in the responsible use and development of AI by articulating our vision and guiding principles for using AI in a lawful and ethical manner