Technical Support Working Group (TSWG)

The mission of the Technical Support Working Group (TSWG) is to identify, prioritize, and coordinate interagency and international research and development (R&D) requirements for combating terrorism. Through the Department of Defense’s Combating Terrorism Technical Support Office and funding provided by other agencies, the TSWG rapidly develops technologies and equipment to meet the high-priority needs of the combating terrorism community, and addresses joint international operational requirements through cooperative R&D with major allies.

History and Organization

In April 1982, the National Security Decision Directive 30 assigned responsibility for the development of an overall United States policy on terrorism to the Interdepartmental Group on Terrorism (IG/T), chaired by the Department of State. TSWG was an original subgroup of the IG/T, which later became the Interagency Working Group on Counterterrorism (IWG/CT). In its February 1986 report, a Cabinet-level Task Force on Counterterrorism, led by then Vice President Bush, cited TSWG as assuring, “the development of appropriate counterterrorism technological efforts.”

TSWG operates under the management and technical oversight of the Department of Defense (DoD), Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low-Intensity Conflict (ASD SO/LIC) and the policy oversight of the Department of State, Bureau of Counterterrorism and Countering Violent Extremism.

TSWG’s 10 subgroups are chaired by senior representatives from DoD, other federal agencies, and national organizations with special expertise in those functional areas. Chairmanship of subgroups is as indicated in the organizational chart below.

TSWG Org Chart