One of the nation’s leading military contractors has come up with a novel way of accelerating the velocity of defense innovation. BAE Systems, Inc. has created an organization called FAST Labs that leverages the commercial innovation ecosystem in places like Austin and Boston to bring cutting-edge technologies to warfighters. The basic idea is to work with venture capital, technology accelerators and research universities to identify dual-use technologies that might solve tough challenges for the nation’s military. With 850 scientists and engineers, FAST Labs has the depth and breadth to find the cutting-edge ideas and move them into development fast — either at a BAE Systems operating unit, or through whatever other mechanism will get them implemented faster than the traditional military acquisition system. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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