Past Event


Neglecting America’s Infrastructure

A Path to Ruin?


9:30 - 11:00 AM EDT


The recent Minnesota bridge collapse is yet another warning sign that risk related to critical infrastructure is rising at an alarming rate. The tragedy in Minneapolis occurred as we approach the sixth anniversary of 9/11, fourth anniversary of the Northeast blackout, and second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Critical infrastructure that contributes to our security, economy, and society is increasingly threatened by terrorists, more intense storms, functional obsolescence, and neglect. The Center for American Progress will convene a panel of experts to review the state of critical infrastructure in the United States, the implications of current trends regarding increased use, decreased investment, declining maintenance, and rising risk from natural and man-made sources; what must be done; what it will cost; how the resources can be generated; and potential applications for new technologies.

Panelists will include Dr. Stephen Flynn, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and author of The Edge of Disaster: Rebuilding a Resilient Nation; Dr. Dawn Bonnell, Trustee Professor of Material Sciences at University of Pennsylvania and Director of the Nano/Bio Interface Center; and Scott Lilly, a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. Dr. Flynn will highlight the urgent decline of infrastructure in the United States and how the United States is falling behind other global players, including China. Dr. Bonnell will describe developments in nanotechnology that may be applied to critical components of a rebuilt national infrastructure, including air travel and information systems as well as bridges and tunnels. Mr. Lilly will discuss how pragmatic investment now can be vastly more cost-efficient than prolonging infrastructure decay. The panel will be moderated by P.J. Crowley, Senior Fellow and Director of Homeland Security at the Center for American Progress.

Please join the Center for American Progress as we describe the implications of United States critical infrastructure under siege.

Featured Panelists:
Dr. Stephen Flynn
, Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations; Author, The Edge of Disaster: Rebuilding a Resilient Nation
Dr. Dawn Bonnell, Trustee Professor of Material Sciences and Director of the Nano/Bio Interface Center, The University of Pennsylvania
Dr. Valerie Rawlston Wilson, Senior Resident Scholar, National Urban League Policy Institute
Scott Lilly, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress

Moderated by:
P.J. Crowley, Senior Fellow and Director of Homeland Security, Center for American Progress.