CSIRTs and Global Cybersecurity: How Technical Experts Support Science Diplomacy

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Ongoing efforts by state actors to collaborate on addressing the challenges of global cybersecurity have been slow to yield results. Technical expert communities such as Computer Security and Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) have played a fundamental role in maintaining the Internet's functional structure through transnational collaboration. Responsible for security incident management and located in diverse constituencies, these coordination centres engage in joint responses and solve day‐to‐day cybersecurity problems through diverse national, regional and international networks. This article argues that CSIRTs form an epistemic community that engages in science diplomacy, at times navigating geopolitical tensions in a way that political actors are not able to. Through interviews with CSIRT representatives, we explain how their collaborative actions, rooted in shared technical knowledge, norms and best practices, contribute to the advancement of international cooperation on cybersecurity.