NCI Agency HQ in Brussels
NCI Agency HQ in Brussels

Submissions are now being accepted for the second annual Defence Innovation Challenge by the NATO Communications and Information (NCI) Agency.

The Challenge is aimed at increasing technology solutions from small businesses and the education sector in support of NATO C4ISR and cyber-capabilities.

SMEs and academic institutions operating at the “cutting edge of technology” from all 28 NATO nations are invited to submit proposals in the following focus areas of critical importance to the mission:

  • Cyber-security

  • Internet of Things (IoT)

  • Long range wireless communications

  • Service management automation and analytics

  • Rapidly deployable, scalable IT infrastructure

  • Software defined networks

  • Cloud security

  • Secure voice interoperability

  • Security-accredited containerisation

  • eProcurement services

“The creativity and dynamism of Alliance Industry have always been a source of strength for NATO, and we need to focus on connecting that innovative capacity to NATO challenges—including from small businesses and academia,” said NCI agency general manager Koen Gijsbers.

In emailed commentary to SC Media UK, Peter Scaruppe, NCI Agency director of acquisition said, “The technology we need to stay ahead of adversaries is out there, and we know we need to be more innovative about how we access the innovation that companies across the Alliance are doing every day. This requires creative thinking about reaching out to SMEs and academia, who often have cutting-edge solutions, but lack established pathways to bring them to NATO. The Defence Innovation Challenge is designed to provide such an avenue. The success of last year's challenge illustrated the great potential of SMEs and academia to contribute to NATO cyber-defence, and we look forward to reviewing this year's entries.”