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    NSIN at Defense Tech Week

    Trust in Autonomy Fireside Chat

    Photo By Olivia Anderson | NSIN Fireside Chat “Operational Trust in Mission Autonomy (OPTIMA) Initiative”...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    National Security Innovation Network

    National Security Innovation Network (NSIN) held two events on Tuesday, Sept. 13 during Defense Tech Week:

    “Operational Trust in Mission Autonomy (OPTIMA) Initiative Fireside Chat”

    Watch here:

    Dr. Jaret C. Riddick, Principal Director for Autonomy in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OUSD(R&E)); Kedar Pavgi, National Capital Regional Director at NSIN; and Lauren Bedula, Managing Director at Beacon Global Strategies, discussed Department of Defense (DoD) solutions for delivering autonomous assets to warfighters in contested environments.

    “We [the DoD] want to be able to deliver trusted autonomy in complex, contested environments for warfighters,” said Dr. Riddick about the focus of the OPTIMA initiative’s mission.

    The panel shared solutions for the private sector and government to work together on emerging autonomous technologies that benefit both commercial and military markets.

    “The industry excitement to support the Department of Defense is, in my opinion, at an all-time high. I think the demand on all sides to figure out collaboration is there,” said Lauren Bedula. “This dialogue in transparency is so important back to informing product development so that they [developers] aren’t incredibly disconnected when it comes to applications for warfighters.”

    The event concluded with a call to action for the OPTIMA initiative and its future efforts to remove barriers for collaboration between the DoD, academia, and the private sector on trusted autonomy.

    “I really want us to arrive at a place where we’re not another mandate, but a value proposition,” added Dr. Riddick.

    “Prepare for Liftoff: Maximizing Dollars for Dual Purpose Fireside Chat”

    Watch here:

    Panelists Ellen M. Chang, Vice President of Ventures at BMNT and the Head of H4XLabs; Abigail Desjardins, Director of the Acceleration Portfolio at NSIN; Kevin Landtroop, Chief Growth Officer Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Advisors Inc. and the Co-founder of Texas Defense Innovation Forum (TDIF); and Rancho Iyer, Engineering Manager at Google, discussed how technology designed for commercial and military purposes continues to be the foundational strategy in leveraging private sector innovation for the public good.

    Abigail Desjardins spoke to NSIN's future and how the organization measures success. Prior to the event, she shared, "In 10 years, I’d like people to say NSIN has helped us see a reduction in the number and criticality of the needs coming from the Warfighter."

    Desjardins closed by sharing the importance of helping companies manage expectations while encouraging government stakeholders to remember that potential partners become discouraged by roadblocks such as long timelines and a lack of transparency.


    Date Taken: 09.19.2022
    Date Posted: 09.19.2022 16:28
    Story ID: 429646

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