DIU, Naval Postgraduate School partner to accelerate innovation adoption and education

By Georgina DiNardo / April 9, 2024 at 3:16 PM

The Defense Innovation Unit and the Naval Postgraduate School announced a partnership at the Sea-Air-Space Conference today aimed at speeding up commercial, dual-use technology solutions adoption and education.

DIU Director Doug Beck and retired Navy Vice Adm. Ann Rondeau, NPS president, unveiled a memorandum of understanding which attempts to strengthen innovation efforts, while educating defense leaders to maintain a leading edge.

“The MOU will build upon past successes and existing relationships between DIU and NPS to expand complementary efforts and future opportunities targeting education, research, and innovation through student fellowships at DIU, personnel exchanges, collaborative experimentation, and projects with the Naval Innovation Center (NIC) at NPS,” DIU said today.

The NIC was established at NPS in December 2022 by Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro.

“I look forward to witnessing the vision for the Naval Innovation Center coming to life at NPS,” Del Toro said. “The NIC will provide an educational opportunity and venue unavailable anywhere else in the world, where industry and academic partners will work side-by-side with our NPS students to research and discover advanced warfighting solutions.”

The partnership also attempts to bolster relationships with industry and academia that are leading the innovation game.

“DIU partners with many Silicon Valley organizations, from tech icons to start-ups as well as universities, and NPS is a natural fit given its defense focus,” Beck said. “Through this partnership we will connect companies with NPS talent and technology leaders, providing a catalyst for their learning and applied research to deliver innovative solutions for the joint force.”

The 2023 Naval Education Strategy calls for naval education to include innovative methods in line with national security priorities.

“Our students are warrior-scholars, and they come to NPS to learn and make a difference,” Rondeau said. “NPS provides a venue to challenge assumptions, try new ideas, and with our industry partners, we serve as an innovation hub to rapidly adapt research concepts into prototype applications and capabilities. This new partnership with DIU will greatly enhance the impact our students can have on the fleet and force through expanded collaborations and greater access to emerging technologies.”