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Launch of the Defence Experimentation & Wargaming Hub

Strategic Command unveils the Defence Experimentation and Wargaming Hub at Southwick Park, Defence's home for wargaming and decision support

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Capt Eugene Morgan RN greeting Lieutenant General Tom Copinger-Symes. MOD Crown Copyright.

Strategic Command's Deputy Commander, Lieutenant General Tom Copinger-Symes, has formally opened the Defence Experimentation and Wargaming Hub. The facility, developed in partnership with the Defence Science Technology Laboratory (Dstl), will be the centre for experimentation and wargaming in Defence.

The hub will help Defence respond to the evolving global threats we face. The need to constantly learn and adapt at pace has never been more important.

Attended by the Director Joint Warfare, Rear Admiral Andrew Betton, and distinguished guests from across Defence, academia, and industry, the opening ceremony reinforced the collaborative nature of the Defence Experimentation and Wargaming Hub.

The hub's wargaming capabilities offer a unique opportunity to bridge the gap between military doctrine, technological innovation, and academic expertise. Through simulated scenarios and tabletop exercises, personnel can explore alternative futures, assess the effectiveness of different courses of action, and anticipate emerging threats - thereby enhancing preparedness and resilience in an increasingly complex security environment.

In his opening address, Lieutenant General Tom Copinger-Symes emphasised the facility's roles as a centre for research, experimentation, and strategic thinking.

He said: "The hub will be the epicentre for strategic brilliance and tactical innovation, and will enable evidence-based decisions to be made at an increased pace."

By fostering a culture of experimentation, collaboration, and forward thinking, it seeks to ensure that Defence organisations remain agile, adaptive, and responsive to evolving threats and opportunities.

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The establishment of the Defence Experimentation and Wargaming Hub is not just the opening of a physical facility, but the start of a new era in Defence strategy and innovation. With its focus on experimentation, collaboration, and foresight, the facility embodies the culture of innovation essential for safeguarding national security in an uncertain world.

Speaking about the launch, Lieutenant Colonel Tom Ellen, Chief of Staff Defence Experimentation and Wargaming Hub said: "The launch marks not the culmination, but the commencement of a journey towards shaping the future of Defence and engendering a culture of experimentation, wargaming and development across Defence."

Strategic Command's Defence Experimentation and Wargaming Hub is based at Southwick Park in Hampshire, and is helping to grow wargaming capability across wider Defence and industry, while delivering a variety of wargames and seminars. The hub will deliver evidence-based decisions faster.

As the Defence Experimentation and Wargaming Hub matures, it will progress its offering to include:

  • at-readiness rapid wargaming service
  • +500m² reconfigurable wargaming facility
  • a repository of wargaming data, tools and scenarios
  • wargaming advice, and design from an experienced team of professionals.
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