Second 2019 Expression of Interest


Joint and Operations Analysis Division (JOAD) undertakes rigorous, scientifically-based analysis of Defence operations and capabilities to provide independent, impartial and timely advice. Our Mission is to develop and employ trusted analytical methods and decision support tools that give Defence and national security decision superiority across all aspects of force design, operational planning, command and control, and support to the Australian Defence Force on operations. Expressions of interest should be submitted by 11:59pm (EDST) on the 25th of November 2019. The projects will be for a period of 12 months commencing in January 2020.


The MCW SRI expressly seeks to revolutionise how we undertake Operations Research (OR) in DST to better handle the interaction of complex geopolitical, social, technological, economic and cultural factors for design of the Future Force. Force design is the process by which Defence conceives and produces a plan for its future capabilities. More information on the MCW SRI can be found at the following link

In 2017 the MCW SRI placed a call for proposals, which resulted in a formation of an informal network of Australian universities supporting Defence decision making. In this call we seek to draw on this network to support Defence clients.

Defence is seeking research to inform our understanding of future complex operating environments and strategic security challenges. The outcomes of this work will be of interest to a range of Defence stakeholders in the Strategic Centre and operational planning communities. Research proposals are invited in response to the following topics:

1. Valuing Dependencies

Selecting a subset of options or projects from a collection of possibilities each with given values and costs, and within a total cost budget is a typical portfolio problem corresponding to the Knapsack problem in mathematics. If however there are synergies between pairs of options then this can be modelled by adding values to links between options, and the corresponding subset selection problem within a total cost budget is called the Quadratic Knapsack problem. How do we meaningfully determine the link values in comparison to the node (option) values?

2. Understanding Future Robustness

The idea of Feasible Scenario Spaces has been proposed as a way of understanding the futures that a given force option is able to address with acceptable risk. This and other measures of future robustness are critical to understanding the ability to deal with an irreducibly uncertain future. However, these theoretical approaches need to be operationalised to allow them to be applied in practice. How can we measure the ability of a force option to deal with possible futures?

3. Dimensioning the Future Joint Warfighting Space

To better understand the conditions under which the ADF may need to operate there is a need to dimensionalise the future joint warfighting space. This would be an extension of the work conducted more than 10 years ago by Pincombe et al (see attached file on the right) in which they dimensionalised the Future Land Warfare space. It would also extend this work by determining the priority of the dimensions and dimension elements when looking at given aspects of whole of force design. What are the critical dimensions of the future joint warfighting space for whole of force design?

EOI Schedule

Interested Australian universities are encouraged to identify relevant fields of endeavour or expertise where they would be willing to engage and partner with DST on Modelling Complex Warfighting. Universities are requested to submit proposals in response to one or more topics of interest. Proposals should outline research outcomes relevant to the topic(s), research methods, and relevant research experience. Proposals should be a maximum of 2 pages.


29 October 2019 – Call for proposals released

25 November 2019 – Closing Date for proposal submissions

26 Nov - 4 December – Selection period for proposal submissions

6 - 20 December 2019 –Development of Research Agreements where appropriate

1 January – 31 December 2020 – Duration of Research Agreements

Submitting Expressions of Interest

Responses to this call for Expressions of Interest are to be made via .

Submissions must be received by 11:59pm (EDST) on 25th November 2019.

Key information

Points of Contact

Deanne Bateman
Defence Science and Technology Group
T: 08 7389 2363

Management and Administration:
Lisa Paddick
Defence Innovation Partnership
T: 08 8463 710

EOI Submissions

Submissions must be received by 11:59pm (EDST) on 25th November 2019.

Express Your Interest