Dr. Jai Galliott is Lecturer in the Australian Centre for Cyber Security within School of Engineering and Information Technology of the University of New South Wales at the Australian Defence Force Academy.
Galliott initially trained as a Principal Warfare Officer in Her Majesty's Royal Australian Navy, but honourably resigned his commission in 2007 to pursue an academic career unavailable to him in the services, and has since received numerous degrees, the first a Bachelor of Arts (with High Distinction) in philosophy and sociology from Macquarie University in Sydney, where he won the inaugural Communities of Enquiry Prize. He then secured an Honours Scholarship from Charles Sturt University, receiving Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy with First Class Honours for a dissertation on the ethics and efficacy of military robotics and, finally, completed his tertiary education with a PhD on the ethical and social implication of autonomous systems from Macquarie University, supported by an Australian Postgraduate Award. Galliott was the first person in Macquarie University's history to submit a full book manuscript as a thesis-by-publication for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, which was awarded without corrections.
He held appointments in the Department of Philosophy at Macquarie University from 2012-2015. From 2015-2016, he was 'Senior Researcher' in on half-a-million-dollar grant awarded to the School of Social Sciences at the University of New South Wales at Kensington by the Australian Department of Defence for the provision of advice on the tactical and strategic issues associated with the rapid uptake of emerging military technologies and their potential impact upon the Australian Defence Force. During this project, Galliott developed a strong research partnership with the Department of Defence and developed a series of original research articles on the implications of autonomous systems and the broader impact of technology upon the personnel and force structure of the services in response to their stated needs. Galliott then again held appointments at Macquarie University and was later offered a highly competitive Sêr Cymru II Fellowship, part funded by the European Commission through the Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) COFUND scheme, for a project that was to critically analyse how cumulative technological innovations in the security and defence space have elevated the role of individuals – particularly warfighters, politicians and technologists – in modern virtual and remote conflict, challenging existing concepts, doctrines, risk frameworks and military/non-military actors themselves. Grateful for the offer, he instead assumed his current role at the Australian Defence Force Academy. Galliott also operates a private defence consultancy firm, DefenceTech Consulting and, earlier in his career, received competitive funding from the Australian Army and the Defence Science & Technology Group of the Australian Department of Defence to conduct research and prepare reports for military stakeholders on autonomous systems, soldier enhancement, cyber warfare and related topics.
Galliott has developed a reputation as Australia's foremost expert on the socio-ethical implications of autonomous systems and is regarded as an internationally respected scholar on emerging military technologies more generally. He authored one of the first book-length scholarly monographs on the ethics of autonomous weapons systems, Military Robots: Mapping the Moral Landscape (Ashgate 2015/Routledge 2016) and has published numerous books and dozens of articles and books chapters on directly related topics. Recent reviews of Galliott's publications by a diverse range of scholars and practitioners point to the quality and international significance of his research:
‘Jai Galliott, in this path-breaking book, sets out to explore the application of this tradition to a number of questions that arise with regard to the use of military robots in contemporary war. In particular, he is interested in armed drones. The research is thorough, the arguments elegant, and the conclusions thought-provoking. The book will be the foundation for future research on the topic’ – Prof. Mervyn Frost, Kings College, London, in the RUSI Journal
‘A solid, carefully considered and down-to-earth resource with absolute relevance for those in the military who lead and protect at the sharp end, and indeed for anyone who ponders the changing character of warfare’ - Warren Reed, former intelligence officer, Australian. Secret Intelligence Service
‘The insights offered by Dr Galliott make this book essential reading for anyone who wishes to understand the nuances and stark choices facing policymakers, the military, humanitarian advocates and society in prosecuting armed conflict against the background of an ongoing quest for a non-violent future’ – Dr. Joseph Savirimuthu, The Liverpool Law School, UK
‘Jai Galliott’s book leads us through a terrain that is frightening and exciting at the same time. The book captures this two-sidedness of military robots and their manifold uses admirably well. Both a concise analysis of morality and responsibility and an impressive overview of the field of military robotics, this is a crucial volume’ – Dr. Henrik Syse, Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO), Norway, in the Journal of Military Ethics
‘Why do states and militaries prefer to develop and employ military robots? How do we evaluate the strong and weak points of modern military robots from moral and technological perspectives? How can we draw lessons from the complexities of modern military technology? Readers will find answers to these questions in Military Robots by Jai Galliott—a brilliant applied ethicist and military theorist’ – Dr. Kai Chen, Xiamen University, China, in International Affairs
His work is concerned with how technological innovations in the defence and security space have enabled a shift away from industrialised warfare, toward a new form of individualised distance conflict that, while offering important benefits, challenges existing concepts, doctrines, risk frameworks and military/non-military actors themselves in ways that are not always obvious from the study of single technologies. He is particularly interested in examining the origins of these challenges in the remnant tensions between the moral, legal, political, technical and strategic needs of the relevant stakeholders, as well as reconciling some of these tensions by devising and deploying an analytical frameworks grounded in applied-social sciences to inform public debate on emerging military technologies and, innovatively, offer value-sensitive guidance to civilian and military policy-makers and technical designers.
He has been invited to speak on the topic of autonomous systems at prestigious government and non-government forums across the world, including Oxford University, the Halifax International Security Forum, the International Committee of the Red Cross, and expert meetings convened by the United Nations at the Palace of Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. He is also an associate of the Consortium on Emerging Technologies, Military Operations, and National Security (CETMONS), the US Navy Consortium for Robotics and Unmanned Systems Education and Research (CRUSER), the Programme on the Regulation of Emerging Technologies at the University of Melbourne, and is a member of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies (IEET). He regularly contributes to the work of international media outlets, including CNN, ABC Television and the BBC World Service. He is Lead Editor of the Routledge book series on Emerging Technologies, Ethics and International Affairs, as well Associate Editor of IEEE Technology & Society Magazine.
Galliott's AGSVA security clearance was last reviewed in March 2017.