For Immediate Release
DHS Science & Technology Press Office
Contact: John Verrico, (202) 254-2385
WASHINGTON – The Department of Homeland Security has released the Integrated Product Teams for Department of Homeland Security R&D Fiscal Year 2016 Report. The report identifies 24 focus areas for technological research and development (R&D), which fall under five mission areas: aviation security, biological threats, border security, cybersecurity and counterterrorism.
The Integrated Product Teams (IPTs) are chaired by component executives and composed of senior-level representatives from across DHS. In support of Secretary Johnson’s Unity of Effort initiative, IPTs have centralized how the Department gathers R&D data and determines the most effective solutions for addressing homeland security challenges.
“Threats to our homeland are evolving quickly, and DHS operators need technologies that will best support their efficient response,” said DHS Under Secretary for Science and Technology Dr. Reginald Brothers. “Now that we have established the IPTs, DHS has a central process to allow our stakeholders to provide feedback on the varying technologies they need on the ground.”
In August 2015, the Secretary asked S&T to lead the IPT effort, supported by DHS components chairing different IPTs according to issue area. The IPT Chairs convened representatives from multiple components to advise where needs are greatest in their respective mission areas, and how DHS operators would be best served.
The IPTs then identified where technological advances could enhance the way operators secure the nation’s ports, borders, critical infrastructure and communities, such as the ability to identify and classify biological threats more quickly and with greater precision on the ground.
For example, in the report, the Bio Threat IPT identifies needs in rapid warning, identification, and characterization of biological threats for three DHS components. While U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the U.S. Secret Service would field future technologies for differing uses, the Bio Threat IPT was able to consolidate otherwise independent requirements into joint projects.
The IPTs will follow an annual cycle that will help inform future research and development projects, procurements, and budgets for the benefit of the entire Department, which in turn will help DHS to carry out its vital missions.