Uni engagement nets award for Defence scientists

By Stephen Easton

September 16, 2015

In a bright spot for the ongoing reforms at Defence, the Defence Science and Technology Group (formerly DSTO) has won an award for its success in forging new partnerships with universities.

DST Group reports that Knowledge Commercialisation Australasia, “the peak body supporting research commercialisation and technology transfer”, gave it an award for Best Creative Engagement Strategy last week.

The umbrella agreement has 27 universities signed up so far and Chief Defence Scientist Dr Alex Zelinski is “thrilled” to be acknowledged. Zelinsky said it was also in line with the government’s agenda to reduce red tape and an example of best practice in business processes and administration.

DST Group says the new framework — established as a result of the First Principles Review — has more than halved the average time taken to process agreements from 86 days to 36 days in its first financial year.

Chief Defence Scientist recognised

Zelinsky was himself also recognised late last month by Engineers Australia for his contribution to engineering, including technical innovation and leadership. He was given the 2015 M A Sargent Medal from Engineers Australia.

Department of Defence secretary Dennis Richardson said Zelinsky was a worthy recipient of the engineering award: “His scientific leadership is an asset to Defence,” Richardson said.

Two defence scientists, Professor Henry d’Assumpcao and Dr Donald Sinnot, have previously been awarded the M A Sargent medal.

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