William and Flora Hewlett Foundation: Establishing Norms to Limit International Cyber Conflict

Cyberspace is an emerging arena for inter-state conflict. Actions states take online may escalate quickly out of control both because of the way cyberspace is constructed and because the norms that typically govern relations between nations have not yet been established in cyberspace. Since 2014, the Hewlett Foundation has supported the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP) to work with leading scholars and government officials around the world to develop “rules of the road” to govern the use of offensive cyber capabilities, especially those that could be particularly destabilizing (e.g., attacks on financial institutions and systems, efforts to compromise the integrity of information and communications technology supply chains). As part of this work, the Carnegie Cyber Policy Project published Understanding Cyber Conflict: 14 Analogies, in which scholars and former military and government officials compare various aspects of cyber conflict to other contemporary and historic domains of conflict. The goal of the grant to CEIP was to help policymakers and the states they represent better understand and place restraints on the use of these powerful new weapons through unilateral, bilateral, or multilateral policy instruments.

In 2015, the Hewlett Foundation made a grant of $350,000 to CEIP to continue its exploration of how best to develop international norms to constrain the use of cyber weapons. More recently, in 2017, Hewlett provided an additional $600,000 to continue CEIP’s work.

William and Flora Hewlett Foundation: Establishing Norms to Limit International Cyber Conflict