Fostering collaborations and strategic research opportunities

Comprising representatives of each member party of the Defence Innovation Partnership, the Research Working Group provides insight and links into Australia’s research and development community.

The Research Working Group is responsible for advising the Defence Innovation Partnership Director about day-to-day research operations, participating in the evaluation of funding applications and advising and assisting the team on strategic research opportunities. 


Dr Robin Nicholson (Chair)

Associate Director, Research - Defence Innovation Partnership

Robin is a respected researcher whose achievements in defence research and development are numerous. As the Associate Director, Research at the Defence Innovation Partnership, Robin brings a wealth of knowledge and a strategic understanding of Defence research and development objectives.

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Tony Kyriacou

Defence Partnerships Director - Flinders University

As the Defence Partnerships Director at Flinders University, Tony leads the university’s engagement with Defence and defence industry. Tony has worked across the defence industry for over 15 years, having previously worked in business development and workforce development at Defence SA, where he played a vital role in the state’s Air Warfare Destroyer bid and Future Submarine campaign.

In addition to his work in the defence sector, Tony has also worked on investment attraction and industry development projects in the ICT, advanced manufacturing and financial services sectors in South Australia.

Matt Opie

Director, Defence - University of South Australia

As the Director, Defence at the University of South Australia, Matt works with researchers and industry on defence related research and development projects. Matt has spent most of his career in the defence sector in project, program and management roles across government and industry. Matt has experience in innovation and concept development through to delivery and management and has worked on projects in the US, Europe and the Asia-Pacific.

Professor Michael Webb

Director, Defence and Security - UNIVERSITY OF ADELAIDE

As the Director, Defence and Security at the University of Adelaide, Michael is the single point of contact for all defence and security-related research and education opportunities. Michael is passionate about bringing academic, industry and Defence capability together, to enhance our collective ability to safeguard Australia’s security.

Michael holds a PhD in physics and has a career that spans across Defence research and development and academia. His research expertise is in communications and networking, over-the-horizon and microwave radar, signals and intelligence, and command and control. Before joining the University of Adelaide, Michael worked at DST Group for over 20 years. In 2006, Michael led a mixed military and civilian team to the Middle East Area of Operations to evaluate the effectiveness of the Australian Defence Force’s communications and command support systems capabilities. For this, Michael received at Australian Operational Service Medal.

Andrew Fullgrabe

Director - Defence Innovation Partnership

Andrew has been leading the Defence Innovation Partnership team since November 2017. His defence industry experience is vast and spans military roles with the Australian Defence Force (ADF) to various industry roles across the defence research and development sector.

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Sumen Rai

ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR, ENGAGEMENT - Defence Innovation Partnership

Sumen has spent over 15 years working at the intersection of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and social sciences. At the Defence Innovation Partnership , Sumen is responsible for engagement with industry, government and the research community, and strategic marketing and communications.

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Lisa Paddick

Project Officer - Defence Innovation Partnership

Lisa is a highly skilled administration leader with a career that spans over 20 years and includes experience in both the private and government sectors. At the Defence Innovation Partnership, Lisa is responsible for grant management, office management and for supporting events, marketing and communications activities.

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