Event description

On September 14 from 12:30-2:00 p.m. ET, the Atlantic Council’s GeoTech Center launched our new report, Detecting Disruption in Closed Systems.

This report, published in partnership with Dun and Bradstreet, demonstrates that complex data analysis applied to commercial data sets can be used to detect signals associated with disruptive events in closed ecosystems.

For this study, the authors focused their analysis on robust commercial data sets surrounding select military community ecosystems including Joint Base Pearl Harbor- Hickman, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, Air Base Wright-Patterson, and Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak. Such a finding is substantial because it suggests that closed ecosystems of high importance could produce data signatures visible through commercial activity. 

Key takeaways

  • The increasing digitization of the planet enables subtle tips and cues to be derived from commercial data, as described in the report.

  • Those seeking to keep their activities confidential need to be aware of the data signatures they may be producing associated with adjacent activities within the broader ecosystem in which they operate.
  • It is anticipated that any attempts to camouflage or hide such perturbations will themselves leave irregularities that analytic means can detect.
  • Those seeking to better understand the planet should consider how commercial data sets can provide indicators and warnings associated with phenomena such as famine.

  • As organizations and societies become increasingly digitized, people will be able to understand the impact of human activities on the world, as well as nature’s disruptions of human societies, better than ever before.


Natalie Barrett
Non Resident Senior Fellow, GeoTech Center
Atlantic Council

David Bray
Distinguished Fellow, GeoTech Center
Atlantic Council

Anthony Scriffignano
Senior Vice President and Chief Data Scientist
Dun & Bradstreet

Moderated by

Stephanie Wander
Director of Programs, GeoTech Center
Atlantic Council

Kiran Jivnani
Assistant Director, GeoTech Center
Atlantic Council