The Singapore Defence Technology Summit (Tech Summit) is a unique gathering of global thought leaders from government, industry, academia, and think tanks, to network, confer, and collaborate in the development of defence and security capabilities.
Tech Summit 2021 discussed how technology has disrupted military operations and brought about new hybrid warfare strategies. Events such as the COVID-19 pandemic have also exposed deeper vulnerabilities in supply chains, which have already been fractured by global geopolitics over the years. New trends continue to emerge and evolve during recent conflicts. There are valuable lessons and insights into the use of digital and dual use-technologies such as the use of social media in the information campaign, and hybrid warfare executed through commercial drone and space technologies. Defence agencies and the industry will have to grapple with the implications of such development.
Tech Summit 2023 will examine how digital and dual-use technologies have reshaped the nature of combat, discuss how to integrate cross domain capabilities and pursue digital superiority, and examine how government organisations and industries are organising themselves for these new paradigms.
- Networking Cocktail and Opening Dinner
- Welcome Address
- Keynote Address by Singapore Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong
- Plenary 1: Technology Lessons Learnt from Recent Conflicts
Recent conflicts have turned some of the world’s biggest technology platforms into contested environments, with information and intelligence campaigns waged in a parallel digital space and hybrid warfare executed through commercial drone and space technologies. Social media has also made massive amount of information openly available, allowing anyone to analyse unfolding situations, anywhere in the world.
This panel will uncover key technology lessons learnt from recent conflicts and discuss their implications to the approaches that defence establishments take for the future. It will postulate how emerging digital technologies could have influenced the outcomes of such conflicts.
- Plenary 2: The Unbreakable Digitalisation Wave
Digital technology has reshaped the nature of business for governments and defence. In recent decades, the use of digital capabilities in the military and other support functions has increased more than ever.
Emerging digital technologies are often dual-use in nature, led by the commercial sector. Governments have to be open to adopt disruptive commercial technology. In the race for global leadership in artificial intelligence, data analytics and cybersecurity, organisations have fully recognised the importance of securing access to new digital technologies – both hardware, software and algorithms.
This panel will examine such trends, and discuss strategies adopted by organisations in their pursuit of digital superiority.
- Plenary 3: Multi Domain Operations – Key Technologies and Enablers that will Shape the Future Battlefield
Satellite, stealth and precision weapons have been game-changers in modern warfare. Are there commercially available technologies that complement such technologies, or perhaps circumvent or disrupt them? In the same vein, tried and tested military system-of-system architectures tend to be static and unadaptable, with limited ability to adapt to changing conditions in an unpredictable future battle environment. Can developments in commercial communications, cloud and edge computing bring about flexibility and dynamic reactivity?
This plenary will gather perspectives on the relevance of traditional technologies, and recommend technical capabilities and organisational changes necessary to facilitate integration of cross domain capabilities for the future battlefield.
- One-on-One Dialogue with Mr Bill McDermott, President and Chief Executive Officer, ServiceNow
- Concurrent Breakout SessionsBreakout 1: Imagining a Defence Metaverse – Hype or Reality?
The concept of a ‘metaverse’ has gained significant traction and attention. One could argue that militaries around the world was ahead of the game, having employed high fidelity simulations for training and wargaming. In the last two decades, there has been some progress made in stitching together simulation networks for connected training. However, the full integration and interoperability of synthetic training across simulation applications for training in a continuous, realistic and immersive world seems to be still a distant future.
This session will gather perspectives about the role of a defence metaverse and discuss about the technological developments needed and challenges to be overcome to make the defence metaverse a reality.Breakout 2: Ground Zero – What does Digitalisation mean for our Warfighters?
Size, weight and power continue to be key issues for the next generation soldier. However, the burden on the next generation soldier/pilot/sailor is not only physical, but also cognitive. Tactical warfighting systems of the future would be complemented by robotics, digital assistants, and wearables; and enhanced by advanced communication systems and algorithms that present an abundance of updated information for tactical decision making.
This session will discuss the impact of digitalisation on the tactical warfighter.Breakout 3: Securing the Defence Supply Chain
The COVID-19 pandemic brought about unprecedented disruptions to our global supply chains. From semi-conductors, batteries and raw materials to advanced technology weaponry; supply chains for these technologies are critical to national defence and security. Three years on, our defence ecosystems are still grappling with the interconnectedness and brittleness of such supply chains. This is a growing concern as we start to pivot towards greater digitalisation.
This session will discuss the challenges in securing our defence supply chains, the strategies in mitigating these risks, and the potential policy levers that may be required to tackle this issue.
- Summary Plenary: New Partnerships in the Digital Defence Ecosystem
Defence establishments around the world have traditionally invested in military technologies from leading defence contractors to maintain their capability secret-edge. Recent conflicts have proven that this capability edge will cede to those that are the savviest in leveraging commercial technologies with speed and agility.
However, these commercial technologies come from a spectrum of sources beyond the traditional defence ecosystem. As defence establishments embrace the digitalisation wave, they will need to forge new partnerships in ways that go beyond the traditional playbook.
This plenary will examine the ‘recipes’ for successful commercial-defence partnerships, and how differences in culture and processes are addressed.
- Site Visits
moderators & speakers
- Ms Jennifer Bisceglie, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Interos Inc
- Mr Sean Gourley, Chief Executive Officer, Primer AI
- Prof Martial Hebert, Dean and University Professor, School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University
- Mr Peter Ho, Executive Chairman, HOPE Technik
- Dr Ee-Eul Kim, President and Chief Executive Officer, Satrec Initiative
- Dr Bradley Martin, Director, RAND National Security Supply Chain Institute and Senior Policy Researcher, RAND Corporation
- Mr Bill McDermott, President and Chief Executive Officer, ServiceNow
- Dr Sean McFate, Professor of Strategy, Georgetown University and National Defense University
- Mr Mike Stone, Managing Partner, Global Government, IBM
- Mr Kuldar Väärsi, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Milrem Robotics
- Dr Jean-Baptiste Vilmer, Director of Institute for Strategic Research, French Ministry for the Armed Forces
- Mr Sven Weizenegger, Head of Bundeswehr Cyber Innovation Hub
- Mr Marcel ‘Otto’ Yon, Partner and Founder, Innovation at Scale
- and more...
Check Out Tech Summit 2021 Highlights
Hear from Past Participants
“My deepest thanks to DSTA for assembling a wonderful and inspiring summit blending both physical and virtual attendees that came in from all over the world and really spending time together to discuss, explore, investigate and inspire each other on creating a very bright future for the whole world.”
Dr Naveed HussainChief Technology Officer, Vice President and General Manager, Boeing Research & Technology (USA)
“It is amazing that with all these situations of the pandemic, being able to have such a good event with high level of speakers, and maintaining the health and restrictions in the country, is not easy but it happened.”
Mr Jose Juan Corcia PalomoHead of Airbus DS Singapore, Malaysia and Brunei, Airbus Defence and Space (Spain)
“It was thoroughly enjoyable. It’s been 2 years since I’ve been here. Singapore and our colleagues in the Ministry of Defence (Singapore) and DSTA are fabulous collaborators and they are eager, like we are, to achieve things together. That itself is a great experience.”
Mr Terence Gordon EmmertActing Director of Defense Research & Engineering for Advanced Capabilities, US DoD / OSD OUSD (Research and Engineering) (USA)
“I’m extremely happy to be part of the third Tech Summit, and to be given the opportunity to meet top leaders in the defence sector from all around the world. I take my hat off for pulling off such a conference during this heightened period – well done DSTA, you did a fantastic job!”
Dr Irit IdanExecutive Vice President for Research and Development, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems (Israel)
“The Singapore Defence Tech Summit has proven to be a very useful platform for collaboration with the pertinent issues that have been discussed today.”
CDR Stefan MattssonDefence Attache/ Military Attache to Singapore and Indonesia, Embassy of Sweden (Sweden)
“I want to compliment the organiser, DSTA and the Ministry of Defence (Singapore) for pulling this event off. It’s a great thing especially during the pandemic. Lots of great speakers, global views to global issues.”
Mr Kusti SalmPermanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence (Estonia)
“It is very impressive. I know that this year we have a lot of restrictions due to COVID-19 but we were still able to share information and meet people online despite the limited interaction offline.”
Dr Suh Jae IlSenior Vice President, Samsung SDS (Korea)