The Pitch 2021: A Competition of New Ideas
The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) hosted its second annual premier event to elevate emerging and diverse voices in national security: The Pitch: A Competition of New Ideas. Selected finalists made their pitch for innovative policy ideas to meet new challenges in U.S. national security policy in front of a distinguished panel of judges and live virtual audience at a session of the 2021 CNAS National Security Conference on June 15, 2021.
The Best in Show Winner of this year's competition will receive a $1,000 prize, and the winners of this year's three heat categories, as well as the People's Choice Award Winner, will each receive $250 prizes. All four competition winners will also be invited to adapt their winning pitches into installments for an official CNAS commentary series featuring new ideas in U.S. national security.
Applicants made their pitch for one of the following prompts:
- Sharpening America's innovation toolkit: What new ideas in U.S. technology policy, economic statecraft, or military strategy can address growing national security challenges for the United States and strengthen the security and prosperity of the American people?
- Reimagining America's alliances and partnerships: What new approach could the United States pursue in a key bilateral relationship, multilateral organization, or international institution to more effectively achieve vital U.S. interests and competitiveness?
- Strengthening America's national security institutions: What specific reform to critical U.S. national security institutions (including structures, processes, and human capital) can improve their effectiveness and public confidence in the face of new challenges?
The panel of judges featured distinguished, bipartisan national security experts, including:
- Michèle Flournoy, Chair of the CNAS Board of Directors;
- Michael Zak, member of the CNAS Board of Directors;
- Carrie Cordero, the Robert M. Gates Senior Fellow at CNAS;
- Tina Huang, Research Analyst at Georgetown's Center for Security and Emerging Technology;
- James L. Anderson, 2020 Shawn Brimley Next Generation National Security Leaders Fellow; and
- Kaleigh Thomas, an Associate Fellow with the CNAS Middle East Security Program
Congratulations to this year's winners of The Pitch:
Winner, Best in Show
Winner, People's Choice Award