As technological developments race ahead across the board, governments must take the initiative and create incentives for the private sector to develop those that serve the national interest—or risk falling behind.

The State of Israel’s initiatives to promote ecosystems of development in the cyber sphere are an example of what government-guided development can do for both national security and the national economy.

Societies that are not interested in leaving their wellbeing up to market forces alone need governments that clearly define national technological requirements and chart ways to reach those objectives.

While governments cannot force companies to research and develop anything, they can certainly encourage them to do so through tax breaks and investments, as Israel’s office of the chief scientist has been doing for over a decade.

Often, technological development comes in recognition of a requirement, and many of these requirements have their origins in wars. For…