From an overarching policy perspective, work continues on the Defence Sector Deal with a view to building a compelling case for the UK Defence community. UKDSC has a pivotal role to play in this strategic activity and will continue to collaborate with multiple stakeholders to develop specific proposals for inclusion in the final submission. In the context of the UKDSCs three principal work streams, a range of exciting developments are in play related to market intelligence, capability development and investment. Discussions are also maturing with potential new companies seeking to join the UKDSC as Associates and Community of Interest members.
During April there were numerous engagements with a wide variety of stakeholders from industry and government partners seeking to learn more and enhance their participation in our work. I had the personal pleasure to meet with the MoD Chief Scientific Adviser, Professor Hugh Durrant-Whyte, and his team. I also attended my first DSO Industry Liaison Board (DILB) and experienced the positive engagement between industry and government to develop and grow ‘Team UK’.
From an organisational perspective, April saw several new recruits to the UKDSC: Shabana Patel and Rachel Hutchison joined us as permanent employees in the respective roles of Executive Assistant and Market Intelligence Analyst. From a secondee perspective we welcomed Rob Rolley (General Dynamic), Jonathan Brasher (Serco), Ian Draper (BAE Systems), Tony Smith (QinetiQ), Ed Merry (Cobham) and Ahmed Omar Ali (Atkins). A warm welcome to all our new colleagues! I also announced the appointment of Samira Braund as Executive Director Operations, who will join us on 14th May.
Finally, we’re already one month into the new 2018/19 funding period. I am personally delighted that the government, BEIS in particular, has a strong desire to extend our funding horizon further into the future.