Fedblog FedblogFedblog
Government Executive Editor in Chief Tom Shoop, along with other editors and staff correspondents, look at the federal bureaucracy from the outside in.

Who's in Charge of Alien Response?

ARCHIVES
Fer Gregory/Shutterstock.com
Suppose extraterrestrial beings are actually sending out signals to Earth and we finally hear them. Who in the federal government (or elsewhere) is designated to form an official response? 

"I don't think that there's anybody designated to be in charge," says Seth Shostak,  senior astronomer at the California-based SETI (as in, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute. In an interview with MSNBC, Shostak said not much planning has been done at any level to deal with the ramifications of an alien encounter. He also repeated a prediction that the ongoing SETI effort to comb the universe for signs of communication from aliens will pay off by 2025 or 2030.

A poll conducted in connection with a new National Geographic Channel show on UFOs shows that 77 percent of Americans think there's evidence that aliens already have visited Earth. More than a third of respondents said they were convinced that UFOs were out there.

So who should be in charge if one or more of those UFOs reveals itself to more than this group of of hardcore believers and actually displays hostile intentions? Well, 65 percent of those surveyed said President Obama would do a better job than GOP challenger Mitt Romney of handling an alien invasion.

(Image via Fer Gregory/Shutterstock.com)

Tom Shoop is vice president and editor in chief at Government Executive Media Group, where he oversees both print and online editorial operations. He started as associate editor of Government Executive magazine in 1989; launched the company’s flagship website, GovExec.com, in 1996; and was named editor in chief in 2007.

FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Federal IT Applications: Assessing Government's Core Drivers

    In order to better understand the current state of external and internal-facing agency workplace applications, Government Business Council (GBC) and Riverbed undertook an in-depth research study of federal employees. Overall, survey findings indicate that federal IT applications still face a gamut of challenges with regard to quality, reliability, and performance management.

    Download
  • PIV- I And Multifactor Authentication: The Best Defense for Federal Government Contractors

    This white paper explores NIST SP 800-171 and why compliance is critical to federal government contractors, especially those that work with the Department of Defense, as well as how leveraging PIV-I credentialing with multifactor authentication can be used as a defense against cyberattacks

    Download
  • Toward A More Innovative Government

    This research study aims to understand how state and local leaders regard their agency’s innovation efforts and what they are doing to overcome the challenges they face in successfully implementing these efforts.

    Download
  • From Volume to Value: UK’s NHS Digital Provides U.S. Healthcare Agencies A Roadmap For Value-Based Payment Models

    The U.S. healthcare industry is rapidly moving away from traditional fee-for-service models and towards value-based purchasing that reimburses physicians for quality of care in place of frequency of care.

    Download
  • GBC Flash Poll: Is Your Agency Safe?

    Federal leaders weigh in on the state of information security

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.