As the push for net zero is fundamentally reshaping government agendas and many of our key industrial sectors, it’s clear that no one can take a back seat. This includes the world of defence in considering how climate change might impact on issues of national or global security.

As energy sustainability becomes a very important focus for the sector and a major driver of engineering innovation, this panel discussion we will explore why sustainability and carbon reduction is important to the sector both in terms of minimizing its impact on the environment and ensuring that it is resilient to current and future threats.

The discussion - which will bring together panelists from the defence and low carbon sectors - will look at some of the key areas of low carbon innovation in the defence sector, examine some of the unique challenges posed by the sector, and explore some of the lessons that can be learned from other areas of industry.

Key discussion areas / Agenda

• Why carbon reduction is important to the defence sector
• How more efficient use of energy builds resilience and boosts capability
• Opportunities for cross sector collaboration
• Skills implications
• Energy sustainability and legacy assets
• Key areas of innovation
Wednesday May 19, 2021, starting at 3:00 PM BST
Steve Austen
Engineering Director, SC Group
Steve Austen joined the company in 2014 as the Engineering Director and Chief Engineer. He became Engineering Director for SC Group in September 2015.
Steve is responsible for the overall governance, leadership and direction of the Group’s engineering activities and capabilities, globally. Steve is a Chartered Engineer, Naval Architect and Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers with over 25 years’ experience in R&D, design, supply and support across the composites, defence and marine sectors. He has a passion for making things work for the operator in the most challenging environments.
Prior to joining the company, Steve was Head of Engineering at the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, responsible for the design and through life support of plant and equipment, including the new Shannon Class all weather lifeboat and associated launching system, which was successfully introduced into service in 2014.
Steve has also worked for the Ministry of Defence in a number of new build and naval support project teams.
He was also the Institution of Mechanical Engineers ‘Engineer of the Year’ in 2015.
Cathy Davis
Head of Strategy, Sustainability, Simulation & Synthetics, BAE Systems plc
Cathy Davis is Head of Strategy, Sustainability, Simulation & Synthetics for BAE Systems and is responsible for driving group strategies to enhance on the company’s position as a technology leader. One particular area of focus is leading sustainable product innovation across the company.

Cathy has over 25 years’ experience in the defence sector, and has held a variety of engineering and business transformation roles within the Maritime sector. More recently Cathy managed a company-wide technology innovation and investment fund that developed new products with particular successes in the areas of maritime autonomy and advanced manufacturing.
Dave Smith
Director of Technology, Rolls Royce
Dave joined Rolls Royce on 2nd October 2017 and is Director of Technology.
Prior to RR, Dave was Managing Director of the Ricardo Automotive Engineering Consulting businesses based throughout Europe, with sales teams in Japan, India and Korea. Before that, Dave was Global Head of a Cambridge Consultancy - PA Consulting’s technology consulting, product development and innovation company. Previously Dave was Managing Director of a communications and software R&D company, Roke Manor. Roke received the Queens Award for Innovation and multiple other awards for engineering and also received recognition as Best Employer.

He is Chair of the IET Policy Panel on Innovation and Emerging Technologies.
Lieutenant General (Retd) Richard E Nugee
CB CVO CBE Defence Non-Executive Director for Climate Change
Richard Nugee was a career soldier until retiring from the Army earlier this year. Since Feb 20 he has concentrated on providing the Ministry of Defence with a strategy and plan to embrace the effects of Climate Change, first as a serving soldier and latterly as Defence’s first Climate Change Non-Executive Director. Prior to this, he served on numerous operational tours and on the staff in the Army and Defence, culminating as the Chief of Defence People (Global HR Director). He is also Board Chair, Strategic Advisor, Patron and Trustee of a number of profit and non-profit organisations.
Paul McNamara
Technical Director, Williams Advanced Engineering
Paul is responsible for overseeing the overall technical management and delivery of the company’s expanding range of projects in the automotive, motorsport, energy, defence and civil aerospace sectors.
Before joining Williams, Paul worked as an Executive Director at Shanghai Automotive Industries, based at their Technical Centre in the UK, but working for much of the time in the Chinese operation as part of the global team to set future product direction and deliver current programmes to market. Prior to SAIC he worked for more than 20 years at Ricardo during which time he was the UK Engineering Director for five years and Managing Director of the UK divisions for a further five years. During his time at Ricardo he directed major projects for key customers such as Ford, Volvo, Hyundai and McLaren.
Since Paul’s appointment to the role of Technical Director he continues to apply his extensive experience of high level strategic planning across Williams Advanced Engineering’s range of industry sectors, as well as first-hand knowledge of operating in emerging new markets across the world. Paul is key to ensuring that the business continues to build a reputation for delivering projects in an agile and innovative way.
Jon Excell
Editor - The Engineer
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