Defense Innovation Unit Programming at SXSW 2023 Conference

SXSW photo collage

Collaboration between industry, government and academia here in the U.S and around of the world was the focus this year’s SXSW 

Government and industry partnerships and collaboration are key to how the United States can prepare for emergent crises and the defense of democracy, today and tomorrow.

The Department of Defense (DoD) and our government partners shared how we are working to streamline processes, collaborate and rapidly deliver capabilities at SXSW2023. Public-private partnerships are a critical element by developing a talent pipeline that could impact both the DoD and the tech sector.

Austin continues to be an important hub with a presence from nearly every DoD  organization. In addition, Austin and SXSW provide unique opportunities and events to meet with start-ups, accelerators, the military, and universities. The co-investment of DoD, Texas, Austin, and tech sector companies is a unique way to demonstrate a new model for Federal, state and local partnerships.

The Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), participated in and attended a number of events from March 10-13, highlighting opportunities to work with the Department in the key areas of AI, autonomy, cyber/telecom, energy, human systems and space. If you missed us or were unable to attend, here are DIU's two panels from the conference. If you are a company that wants to connect, reach out to cet@diu.mil.

Panel: From COVID to Cancer: Prediction & Prevention for Global Health

How can the Government accelerate adoption of healthcare technology? What role can government play in adoption and implementation of the best commercial solutions?  This panel will feature stakeholders from both government and industry who can discuss both government’s role as well as how we can create public-private partnerships to build, test, and adopt solutions that implement the next generation of commercial solutions in government.

Moderator: Vishal Patel


  • Geoff Ling, CEO, OnDemand Pharmaceuticals

  • Renee Wegrzyn, Director, Advanced Research Projects Agency - Health

  • Amanda Love, Joint Project Manager - Panacea, Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Defense

Panel: How Uncle Sam Helps Emerging Clean Energy

Like the rest of the world, the Department of Defense is entering into a profound period of change as they look to leverage breakthrough clean energy solutions to meet their bold climate goals. Each service will need to adapt their current technologies and harness new ones to help improve their energy efficiency, operational resiliency, and environmental sustainability. Come join us for a discussion on how the Department will play a unique role, not only as a future end user, but as a trusted industry partner that can assist with unique funding mechanisms and creative development arenas that will lead to the next generation of climate saving energy technologies as well as thousands of new American jobs.

Moderator: Mike Wu, Converge Strategies


  • Honorable Meredith Berger, Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Installations, Energy and Environment

  • Paul Farnan, Principal Deputy, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy, and Environment

  • Andrew Higier, Acting Director Energy Portfolio, Defense Innovation Unit

Have additional questions? Email us at info@diu.mil. We look forward to connecting with you in Austin in 2024.