Next Big Thing

What is the Next Big Thing?

I/ITSEC Next Big Thing (NBT) is a showcase of currently nascent technologies and technology applications that, while currently at low technology readiness levels (TRLs), are poised to disrupt the industry within the next 3-5 years. Its mission is to accelerate the adoption of these technologies by our I/ITSEC community via a new and modern forum to help organizations (Government, Industry, and Academia) realize high value from rapidly evolving technology.

Event Format

This year, the I/ITSEC NBT will consist of three elements: (1) a series of TED-style presentations, roundtable discussions and lectures, (2) on-floor demonstrations of highlighted NBT technologies, and (3) a networking social which will allow the community to interact and collaborate with NBT thought leaders. These events will occur throughout the conference, with presentations taking place in the Destination Lounge, a technology-enhanced collaboration center within the OCCC.

Call for Proposals

We invite the community to submit a proposal for a NBT presentation at this year’s I/ITSEC conference. Specifically, we are interested in topics relevant to the MS&T community in the following areas:

  • new technologies and concepts which have not reached a mature TRL
  • novel applications of existing technologies (e.g. unique usage of LLMs)
  • catalysts to adoption (success factors or accelerants to adoption of technology)

Selected proposals will be asked to submit a pre-recorded video of their presentation for review and feedback in early September.

Please note that we are specifically interested in “what’s next” as opposed to “what’s now,” and proposals will be heavily weighted by this criteria.

Call for Demonstrations

We are planning to feature select NBT technologies through on-floor demonstrations the week of the conference. More details will be made available later this summer.


Submit proposals online by Friday, 19 July 2024. If you have questions, please contact this year’s NBT leadership: Maureen Holbert ( and Brian Stensrud (


Special Events