Defence Science and Technology Laboratory
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Dstl and BAE Systems harness SMEs and academia to deliver Defence Analysis Framework

More than £85m worth of defence and security analysis has been delivered under a unique framework contract operated by The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) and BAE Systems.

The two recently hosted their annual supplier event for the Analysis Support Construct (ASC) framework contract which brought together representatives from over 100 organisations across industry and academia.

Since 2014, a significant amount of analysis has been delivered through the ASC. Around 250 separate analysis projects have been commissioned, supporting decision making in Dstl, the Front Line Commands and other government departments. The ASC contract is owned by Dstl’s Defence and Security Analysis (DSA) Division, and delivered and managed by BAE Systems CORDA as prime contractor. The framework provides a route to access analysis services that is both responsive and diverse, enabling better and more-informed decisions to be made across the defence industry.

Rob Solly, Divisional Head, Dstl, yesterday said:

The ASC framework is enabling a range of strategic and investment decisions to be founded on the best evidence-based analysis available. This provides reassurance in the integrity of the decision-making process and ensures that investment decisions provide the best value for money.

Suzanne Harrison, Director of BAE Systems CORDA, yesterday said:

Over the past four years we have worked in close partnership with Dstl and have shown the value that can be delivered through genuine collaboration. The ASC has given the Ministry of Defence a highly flexible route to accessing the skills, capabilities and innovative thinking they require. We look forward to a continuing partnership with Dstl in future.

The ASC has been notable for its open, collaborative approach, bringing together teams from across the supplier community. Over 100 organisations have delivered work through ASC to the value of approximately £85m, and over 50 have been selected to lead projects. Throughout the life of the contract, the majority of work has been delivered by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and academic institutions. The framework provides the widest pool of expertise for science and technology analysis not just to Dstl and its customers but for the whole of the UK defence community.

Case studies presented at the recent supplier event repeatedly focused on the themes of innovation, growth of new capability in the supply chain and collaboration, which have been the hallmarks of many ASC tasks. Some examples include:

  • The use of AI to develop plans within defence modelling to reduce the cost of using these tools
  • Adoption of software development practices from the games industry to leverage their investment
  • Close collaboration between suppliers, Dstl and the service commands to provide an objective assessment of the UKs military capability in different scenarios


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