Home' Defence Magazine : Issue 2 2016 Contents 16 Defence Issue 2 2016
HERE is such an air of excitement
at the Defence Industry Policy
Division it seems infectious. The
new division, formed in December
2015, is fully committed to a “once
in a generation” change to Defence’s approach
to industry engagement and innovation.
First Assistant Secretary Kate Louis and her
small but dedicated team devoted two years to
publish their “radical” Defence Industry Policy
Statement (affectionately known as DIPS),
which was revealed at the 2016 White Paper
launch on 25 February at ADFA.
The other team members are Senior Adviser
Naval Shipbuilding Glenn Alcock, and Assistant
Directors White Paper Enterprise Management
Lois Wake and Nathan Rufus.
Each has a common passion for the
“massive” challenge involved in reshaping
“We really are in a once-in-a-generation
change, particularly in the innovation space
we’re looking at some important changes. I
guess I can look maybe 10-15 years into the
future and see things that we are doing now that
could really make a difference to warfighters
and their capability,” Kate says.
“The stars are aligning in terms of great
Government backing and intent, senior
Government buy-in and a great framework.”
Kate says the team was focused on
generating a policy statement that represents a
shift in Defence’s approach to innovation and
“A small team was critical to the success. I
don’t think anyone would say that coming up
with a policy statement for a White Paper is an
easy exercise to do,” she says.
Lois says the experience over two years for
her was a “real emotional roller-coaster”.
Nathan describes the launch of the Industry
Policy Statement, the first time such a document
was released with a White Paper, as a highlight
given the long incubation period.
“It has been behind closed doors for a such
real world,” says Nathan, who adds that on a
personal front he started two years ago with a
girlfriend, who then became his fianceé and is
now his wife.
Glenn says juggling the family and work
balance was difficult over the past two years as
his 12-month-old boy grew to a three-year-old.
“That was huge part of the mix – challenging
home life with a huge expectation of work.
What pushed us through that was the team and
our ability to keep going through what was our
single principle – the passion and belief,” he
So how do you forge a brand new policy
“I can just remember that first day thinking:
this is very daunting. What we can do with
industry policy? What was the problem we were
trying to solve? There were literally endless
solutions that you could come up with. I found
that first year quite challenging but once it
started to come together it was like a snowball,”
Two years later there is no sign of that
snowball losing momentum. The team is
now busily implementing key initiatives and
measures. The Government announced on
8 March that the Centre for Defence Industry
Capability will be headquartered in Adelaide.
The centre, co-chaired by Defence and
the private sector, will have $230 million in
funding over the decade to provide business
development and to facilitate innovation
The team is now also focusing on a second
initiative, “a new approach to innovation”,
which consists of two funded parts: the Next
Generation Technologies Fund and the Defence
Over the next decade, $730 million has
been set aside for the fund for research into
cutting-edge technologies. The hub will be
funded at $640 million over the decade to fund
collaborative innovation projects to be shared
between Defence, industry and academia.
According to Kate, these two initiatives are
Through thick and thin a small team devoted two years to redefining Defence’s industry policy.
We look at who they are and what drove them
ground-breaking and are at the heart of the
“We are hoping that there’s a start-up out
there that needs to be linked in with our new
initiatives. Somewhere out there is the company
that is going to transform the landscape,” she
“If we have set up a framework that can
find them, nurture them, bring them through
and deliver Defence capability then we will
have done our job. Developing that Australian
industry capability is at the heart of what we are
trying to do.”
Glenn, who is heavily involved with the
innovation hub, agrees.
“OUR SMALL TEAM
WAS CRITICAL TO THE
SUCCESS. WE REALLY
ARE IN A ONCE-IN-A-
PARTICULARLY IN THE
INNOVATION SPACE –
WE’RE LOOKING AT SOME
FIRST ASSISTANT SECRETARY
DEFENCE INDUSTRY POLICY
Links Archive Issue 1 2016 Issue 3 2016 Navigation Previous Page Next Page