About the Stevens Center (TSC)

Establishment. Effective 9 June 2021, pursuant to Sec. 1089 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021, the Secretary of Defense established the Ted Stevens Center for Arctic Security Studies  (Stevens Center, or TSC), the DOD’s sixth Regional Center for Security Studies.   On 17 November 2021, DOD announced Anchorage, Alaska was the sole candidate city for the new center.  On 28 December 2021, via the Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 NDAA, the TSC was established as DOD’s sixth regional center in Anchorage via sections 342 and 2611 of Chapter 16 (Security Cooperation) of Title 10, U.S. Code.  On 5 May 2022, through a U.S. Air Force Strategic Basing Study and Evaluation, Joint Base Elmendorf (JBER) Alaska was determined to serve as the Stevens Center was enduring home.  A final decision for the specific facility at JBER is pending.  Additionally, the TSC is currently in work with Defense Security Cooperation Agency and the office of the Secretary of Defense for enrollment to the U.S. Federal Register.

DOD’s Regional Centers.
The Stevens Center joins five prior established DOD Regional Centers for Security Studies:

  • The George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies (Marshall Center), established in 1993 and located in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.
  • The Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies (DKI APCSS), established in 1995 and located in Honolulu, Hawaii. 
  • The William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies (Perry Center), established in 1997 and located in Washington, D.C.
  • The Africa  Center for Strategic Studies (ACSS), established in 1999 and located in Washington, D.C.
  • The Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies (NESA), established in 2000 and located in Washington, D.C.
  • The Ted Stevens Center for Arctic Security Studies, (TSC) established in 2021 and located on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, in Anchorage, Alaska.
DoD’s Regional Centers
Arctic Tab Courtesy of DoD

DOD’s Regional Center Mission

Through executive-level (practitioner) education programs and in-region workshops, focused research in support of OSD Policy priorities, and the cultivation of communities of practice, the DOD Regional Centers for Security Studies promote integrated, collaborative responses to transnational threats; foster common perspectives on regional security challenges; and strengthen binational and multinational institutional relationships.

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In so doing, each promotes the intellectual interoperability underpinning full-spectrum security cooperation and build our Nation’s and our partners’ capacity to collaborate against shared threats.  Prioritized areas of focus include territorial security; transnational and asymmetric threats; and defense sector governance.

Ted Stevens Center of Arctic Studies Mission: The Stevens Center is underway in building strong, sustainable, domestic and international networks of security leaders and promote and conduct focused research on Arctic security to advance DOD security priorities in the Arctic region.   

In DOD’s establishment plan to Congress, the Department defined four mission areas for the TSC:

  • Advance Arctic awareness, both among partners and within the increasingly professionalized field of U.S. Arctic service.
  • Advance DOD Arctic priorities.
  • Reinforce the rules-based order in the Arctic; and,
  • In keeping with Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin’s priorities and the Interim National Security Strategic Guidance, address the impacts of climate change in the region.
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In support of the TSC’s assigned mission, the Center is underway in creating and providing programs for civilian and military security practitioners and associated Subject Matter Experts to promote discussion & understanding that is inclusive of Arctic Indigenous interests and coordinated with the DoD Regional Center enterprise, for Arctic Security Interests of Europe, North America, Asia, and the Indo-Pacific.  The center will accomplish this by delivering relevant education, analysis, and symposia to prepare civilian and military security practitioners, to propose useful solutions, and to enhance people networks to ensure a stable, rules-based order in the Arctic that will benefit the United States and all Arctic nations (and in collaboration with) the Marshall, Perry and Inouye RCs, based on the intersection of Arctic Security Interests of Europe, North America, Asia and the Indo Pacific.

Value Proposition: Unique in the security cooperation toolkit, the DOD Regional Centers employ executive education to engage senior-level civilian and military policymakers and practitioners beyond traditional defense stakeholders, including inter-ministerial officials (e.g., foreign affairs, interior, parliamentarians), and key security stakeholders from non-governmental organizations and international organizations.  DOD objectives in the Arctic require multilateral approaches to which the DOD Regional Center model is well-suited. Through delivering relevant education, analysis and symposia, the Stevens Center will prepare civilian and military security practitioners, propose useful solutions, and enhance people networks to ensure a stable, rules-based order in the Arctic that will benefit the United States’ security interests in the region.   In support of these objectives, the Stevens Center has created a set of comprehensive plans, objectives and milestones as an internal roadmap to develop the center’s organization, program content and planned activities.

DOD Regional Center Governance.

  • Regional Centers are direct reporting organizations of the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Policy (OUSD-P), charged with advancing regional priorities identified by OUSD-P and respective combatant commands in support of the National Defense Strategy.  
  • In support of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Defense Security Cooperation Agency serves as DOD’s Executive Agent for Regional Centers, with support and oversight responsibilities in areas like fiscal management, personnel management, and program management.
  • TSC aligned Geographic Combatant Command:  United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM).  On 7 March 2022, the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, (USD(P)) formally designated USNORTHCOM to be the lead combatant command the Stevens Center will align its programs and activities.  Accordingly, the TSC will principally work in support of  USNORTHCOM for Arctic related research & analysis, executive education and regional engagement.  Additionally, USD(P) tasked the TSC to coordinate Center programs and activities with United States European Command, other combatant commands and with fellow DOD Regional Centers, as necessary.