For the first time Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) will be dedicating a day to one of the most important aspects of the defence and security sector, its workforce.
As forecasts predict a shortfall of 20,000 UK engineering graduates per year, and only one in eight of those employed will be women, DSEI’s People and Skills Day has been introduced to explore how government and industry can work together to address this.
Governments, militaries, security agencies and industry players are acutely aware of the need to attract and retain fresh expertise to safeguard communities and critical national infrastructure. However, the defence and security sector is competing with other related industries also working to close the skills gap, particularly in Science Technology Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects.
The Defence Growth Partnership (DGP) will use this as an opportunity to launch a new initiative to develop key skills in the defence industry.
The DGP brings together 600 organisations across industry, government and academia. It has created this new programme to develop the people and skills that will grow the UK’s future trading relationships. This effort will support the ‘Team UK’ vision for international partnerships in the defence sector.
Full details of the new skills programme will be disclosed by the Chairman of DGP Skills, Dave Armstrong, in DSEI’s West Theatre at 12:00 on 15th September.
Additional representatives from military and industry with responsibility for nurturing expertise and personnel development preparing to speak at DSEI include: Rt Hon Tobias Ellwood, Minister for Defence People & Veterans, Lt General Richard Nugee, Chief of Defence People; Air Vice Marshal Bruce Hedley, Joint Forces Command’s innovation lead; Rear Admiral Nils Christian Wang, Commandant Royal Danish Defence College; and Nik Beecher, Vice President of Cyber Security & ICT Solutions, Leonardo.
The practical applications of STEM subjects in defence and security will be demonstrated in a series of demonstrations and challenges. These include a UAS Challenge by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers; practical medical demonstrations by Defence Medical Services; Cyber Security Challenge; VR headset and cockpit simulator immersion to demonstrate the role of military training; and tours of visiting warships.
Duncan Reid, DSEI Event Director said: “As the organisers of the most widely attended tri-service Defence and Security event, we have a responsibility to address key challenges that the industry faces now and in the future. DSEI is a vital opportunity to promote the great strides already under way to fill the forecasted skills gap, while also providing a platform for companies to meet emerging new talent”.
DSEI will take place 12th-15th September at ExCeL London. People and Skills Day will be held on 15th September.