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Pentagon to accelerate allied science and technology co-operation with new strategy

Launch of the Hypersonic International Flight Research Experimentation-4 (HIFiRE-4) hypersonic test vehicle at the Royal Australian Air Force Woomera Range Complex, South Australia. The new DoD science and technology strategy will look to accelerate partnerships such as the Australian-US HIFiRE hypersonics research collaboration programme over the next several years. (Commonwealth of Australia)

The US Department of Defense (DoD) is looking to accelerate co-operation with allies and partner countries in the area of science and technology (S&T) development, as a way to maintain a technological advantage over near-peer adversaries such as China.

The push for more international collaboration in the S&T realm is one of three major pillars in the department's newly released National Defense Science and Technology Strategy, officially unveiled on 9 May. The new strategy will seek to not only enhance co-development initiatives among US allies on advanced technologies, but also bring a more joint focus into internal technology test and development initiatives within the US armed forces.

“First and foremost … any mission is a collaborative and joint mission, which means that we need to be thinking beyond just sort of service-specific and agency-specific concerns but really thinking about this as a joint … effort with our partners and allies internationally, as well as domestically,” Nina Kollars, adviser to the Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, said.

“So we're going to step away from conventionally thinking the department defence can be solely responsible for science and technology that is defence relevant, and really think about this … as a collaborative effort. From the very beginning, from early basic research all the way to acquisition,” she added during an 8 May briefing ahead of the strategy's release.

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