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    Innovation in Defence - The 'Navigate' team was presented with a prestigious Award

    Military Voice
    Posted by Military Voice on May 13, 2024 2:20:40 PM

    In Defence’s quest to enhance expertise in vital science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) domains, the 'Navigate' team within the Defence Science and Technology Group stands out. Honoured with the esteemed Vice Chief of the Defence Force (VCDF) Capability Award, this team is lauded for its remarkable efforts in tackling this crucial priority.

    The award underscores Navigate's adeptness at fostering partnerships and collaborations within the Defence innovation, science, and technology landscape. Their pioneering strategies aim to cultivate a proficient, diverse, and unified cadre of STEM professionals within Defence, capable of navigating the national innovation sphere to bolster Defence capabilities. 

    The Navigate program offers a structured pathway for mid-career STEM experts to delve into the intricacies of Defence science over a 12-month period. Participants engage in two six-month placements across various technology domains within the Defence STEM framework, including academia and industry. 

    Jessica Brophy, Assistant Director of Navigate, plays a pivotal role in steering the program's strategic direction and execution. Her responsibilities span engaging with key stakeholders, nurturing relationships, managing expectations, and charting a course for future endeavours. 

    “Navigate is a program that keeps evolving. The recruitment and delivery of the program would not be possible without the ongoing support of the organisation,” Jessica Brophy said. 

    “We are truly honoured to have received this award.” 

     Navigate strives to enhance gender diversity within Defence STEM roles, particularly at senior levels, addressing the stark underrepresentation of women. Despite comprising 48 percent of the Australian workforce, women occupy only 16 percent of STEM positions. 

    Launched in 2022, the Navigate pilot set ambitious gender targets, aiming for 40 percent female participation. From over 800 applicants, approximately 70 positions were awarded, with 43 percent being female. 

    Defence's commitment to diversity is evident as the Assistant Minister for Defence announced plans to elevate female participation targets in all entry and mid-career STEM initiatives to 50 percent. Young EndeavourRead: The Changing Roles of Women

    In its latest iteration, Navigate 2.0, over 900 applications were received, resulting in a cohort where more than 50 percent of the 35 STEM specialists are female, highlighting progress toward gender parity in Defence STEM roles. 

    “A key goal for my team this year is ensuring that our Divisions are informed, engaged and aware of the intent of Navigate,” Ms Brophy said. 

    “I am excited to welcome our new cohort in May and take all of those lessons learnt from the first intake to enhance the delivery and design of the program.” 


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    Topics: Media Release, Navy

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