Integrating the Science and Technology Support for the UK’s Defence and Security

An integration has been agreed between the Ministry of Defence’s (MOD) Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) and the Home Office’s Centre for Applied Science and Technology (CAST). This has been decided following a review to examine the best way to provide enduring and appropriate science and technology (S&T) support to the Home Office and the MOD. The integration will improve the resilience of the S&T support that makes such a major contribution to the nation’s defence, policing, security and resilience.

Commenting on today’s announcement, Dstl’s Chief Executive, Jonathan Lyle said:

Combining our capabilities will improve the science and technology support for the MOD and Home Office, and enhance the nation’s defence and security. Dstl and CAST already work closely together on key projects such as forensics, body armour and detection systems. We intend to continue to build on this existing close relationship to make the integration process a success.

The Head of CAST, Andy Bell, added:

This development will enable a more joined-up, coherent approach to science and technology provision for security, policing and resilience in the UK. The move will mean that our customers have access to a wider range of scientific and engineering expertise across government, industry and academia, giving broader access to innovative ideas and solutions. There is a lot of hard work to be undertaken before we complete the move, and we will be providing full support to our staff throughout the transition.

The integration is expected to start in 2017 and end by 2020. CAST’s staff and work will move to become part of Dstl, and be primarily based at Porton Down, near Salisbury. An integration programme team will work jointly across Dstl and CAST to support the transfer of staff and capabilities during the transition period, ensuring continuity in support of national security, defence and policy.

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