Military and Strategic Journal
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Founded in August 1971


DSEI 2021 to See Top-level Participation by UK Strategic Command

DSEI is a platform for defence and security companies from around the world to share their news, discuss the latest issues and newest technologies and learn from others. The next edition of the event will be held from 14 to 17 September 2021. With DSEI 2019 welcoming visitors from 114 countries, the organisers are hopeful of the 2021 edition surpassing the previous edition in terms of exhibitors, visitors, delegations and business deals inked. 
The UK’s new Strategic Command will lead government participation at DSEI 2021 as it engenders multi-domain integration with the support of the UK defence community. The Command has been charged with transitioning the traditional warfare era’s Joint Force into the Information Age’s Integrated Force. Initial priorities for the Command include generating strategic integration across defence, establishing dominance in the ‘grey zone’ of the battlefield through special operations, and harnessing disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence and big data in the cyber domain.
UK Defence, industry, partners and academia will play a key role in facilitating this change, enabling the British armed forces to better face emerging challenges at home and overseas, and fuse capabilities and activity across all domains at a pace which outstrips adversaries. 
Building a Strong Industrial Base
DSEI 2021 will offer a forum for industry to showcase capabilities that support a persistent national strategic advantage, and can be deployed to, employed in, and exploit multiple domains at tempo. 
 General Sir Patrick Sanders, Commander UK Strategic Command, commented: “UK Strategic Command looks forward to being a key participant in DSEI 2021, setting out our responsibilities and our thinking – as UK Defence’s integrator and responsible for key strategic capabilities – against the rapidly changing character of warfare. 
“The exhibition also provides an opportunity to discuss and highlight the contribution Defence & Security industries offer in ensuring we recover stronger from COVID-19. In an increasingly globalised and complicated world, we cannot afford to think linearly and try and draw a distinction between the various forms of security – they are all one story, and a prosperous industrial base is critical to the economy and to our national security.”
Bringing together defence innovation leaders from across the land, air, sea and joint domains, DSEI industry participants from all levels of the defence industry will be able to engage directly with British Armed Forces stakeholders and gain insight on the capabilities and structures required for the 2030s and beyond.
 Gen Sanders added: “I look forward to seeing you at DSEI 2021 and updating you on our plans for implementing Multi-Domain Integration, and how industries – from traditional defence primes to tech-start-ups – can play their part in the UK’s collective success alongside our partners and allies.”
Power of Integration
DSEI 2021’s Land Zone will put the power of integration in the spotlight as the British Army looks to build momentum across industry to support its Land Operating Concept for the coming decade. 
In order to better adapt to the evolving character of warfare, the Army is enacting a new land operating concept that focuses on integrating government, industry and allies/partners at the highest level in order to drive strategic activity.
Central to this is the ability for defence and industry to work collaboratively to solve future capability challenges, as outlined under the Army Industrial Engagement Framework launched at DSEI 2019. Industry is now being encouraged to take its place as a lead in the Army’s future force, with new technologies being exploited under the Secretary of State’s Transformation Fund and plans to link the Army Venture Capital Partnership with the National Security Strategic Investment Fund.
Around £100 million has been marked for investment in novel technologies in 2021, with hybrid electric drives, human/machine teaming, and the development of a virtual proving ground to accelerate Capability Development and 21st Century Headquarters among the top priorities. Additionally, industry is to play a key role in the planned Army Battle Lab on the Dorset Innovation Park, which will enable small and medium sized companies to collaborate and innovate in a year-round setting that is currently limited to the Army Warfighting Experiment.
DSEI 2021’s Land Zone, supported by the British Army, will provide a forum for industry to engage with Defence on these initiatives, showcase new equipment and technology, identify potential areas of collaboration, and meet with partners at all levels of the supply chain. 
General Sir Mark Carleton-Smith, Chief of the General Staff, said: “As we look to the future, the British Army will be more expeditionary and more engaged for more of the time and our equipment needs to match the threats and exponential developments in technology. The Army’s relationship with industry will be vital to ensuring it has innovation at the heart of future capability and we will be actively seeking opportunities to develop defence’s relationship through the Army’s Land Industrial Strategy.”
Dedicated Zones
Other than the Land Zone, the event will provide exhibitors with a dedicated platform for showcasing their latest technologies in the following areas.
Aerospace Zone: The area will service the entire aerospace supply chain. It will have a crucial focus on Future Combat Air System (FCAS) and the Combat Air Strategy, combining manned, unmanned and space capability, with the Space Hub.
Naval Zone: This will be an interactive showcase of the latest vessels and technology for buyers, procurement managers, and R&D looking to penetrate the naval market.
Security Zone: The zone will be a showcase of security equipment, technologies, strategies and systems to counter priority threats, such as cyber-attacks as well as border, infrastructure, crowd and crisis security.
Joint Zone: Answering the needs of those looking for the latest products and innovations servicing the whole defence and security community is the Joint Zone. This will feature the latest products and innovations servicing the whole defence and security community.
“It is hugely validating to have the support of UK Strategic Command behind DSEI 2021. We believe that DSEI offers the single most valuable opportunity in the biennial defence trade show calendar to connect UK companies and their international counterparts with each other and their end customers across the land, sea and air domains,” said Grant Burgham, DSEI Event Director, Clarion Defence & Security. “We aim to foster business connections at every level and look forward to presenting a world-class industry response to UK Strategic Command’s requirements as they look to support emerging operating concepts over the coming decade.”
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