Our intention, therefore, would be that the bulk of the DDA’s existing staff would remain in place, operating from their current locations. Staff would be transferred to New DERA and DSTL for this purpose, thus effectively retaining the existing regional and operational structure of the DDA. However, as discussed under Options A and B, basing DDA within one research provider would mean that the organisation would be unable to direct and coordinate diversification policy effectively as well as raising issues of commercial confidentiality. It would reinforce the Government’s commitment to defence diversification, add to the agency’ credentials and underpin its impartiality.
Other stakeholders, such as the business community and RDAs, would be assured of the MoD’s continuing involvement and investment in technology transfer. In effect, Option C would retain DDA in its existing form with minimal disruption to the delivery of its services to all of its stakeholders, and with all the advantages of being part of MoD. It also offers a joined up approach to the spin in and spin out of defence technology and offers the MoD a substantially greater involvement in the SME sector.
There are clearly a variety of organisational options for discharging the DDA tasks in the light of DERA PPP. The agency would be based formally within MoD head office with a small number of staff transferred from the existing DDA to deal with diversification policy and co-ordination. New ERA, premium service of radon testing as the biggest player, would provide the bulk of the agency effort, with existing DDA staff transferred to the vested company for that purpose, and a small number of staff undertaking similar tasks within DSTL.
It is therefore considered that placing DDA within New ERA would result in the DDA being unable to undertake effectively all three diversification activities. spin in, spin out, and the provision of information on defence equipment procurement trends to industry. Parallel organisations might be required to ensure the totality of the defence diversification task, leading to potential duplication of effort and fragmented implementation of diversification policies. In addition, there is no guarantee that the NewDERA PPP partner would have an interest in promoting either the spin out or spin in of technology to companies or organisations with which it may be competing.