Judging Criteria


The DisTec Challenge invites innovators and progressive organisations to showcase their solutions which can disrupt training, education and simulation as we know it. This must be a product launched within the last 18 months or a concept currently in development.

Our expert panel will evaluate entries in a competitive 'digital' environment, based around the innovation assessment criteria below. Judges will grade each domain out of 10, yielding a total score of up to 30 points.


1) Desirability

  • Does the customer want it; do you have evidence of end-user buy-in? 
  • How is it linked to known challenges in defence or security domains?
  • What impact will it have on performance?
  • Do benefits significantly outweigh associated costs?

2) Feasibility

  • Is it technically, scientifically and practically achievable?
  • Is it scalable?
  • Is it novel and unique within the defence and security arena?
  • Does your team possess relevant expertise and experience?

3) Viability

  • Can it reach the market in a realistic timeframe, factoring in testing, accreditation and trialling requirements?
  • Has it been designed in a sustainable way?
  • Can it be integrated with existing systems?
  • Does it have dual-use capability by meeting the needs of multiple market segments? 


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Judging Panel

James White

James White

Executive Director, Defence Innovation Greenhouse (Head Judge)

A seasoned IT Leader and innovator with significant international experience, a rich entrepreneurial background and a proven track record of success in both the public and private sectors. Experienced in corporate strategy development, innovation management, system architecture, system engineering, IT operations, IT staffing, organizational change management, and marketing.

Currently serving as the founder and first Executive Director of The Defense Innovation Greenhouse (The DIG), an innovation, collaboration and best practices center aimed at accelerating the uptake of the latest technologies into EU / NATO military establishments and crisis responder communities. Building on my experience in both large inter-governmental organizations and also in small companies, I have a unique perspective of the challenges faced in the public sector to keep pace with the extremely rapid changes happening in IT and also in society as a whole.

Mike Madden 

Mike Madden 

DASA Innovation Partner, UK MoD 

Mike is an Innovation Partner with the Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) in the United Kingdom, and works with innovators to find new ideas that could benefit the defence and security communities.

Mike’s early career was as a Royal Air Force (RAF) Regiment officer, providing Force Protection for Royal Air Force assets wherever they are deployed.

He initially specialised in ground based air defence (GBAD), gaining international experience as well as specialist technical and training qualifications. On operational squadrons, he was the specialist lead for all individual and collective continuation training. Later, as the deputy commander of the RAF’s GBAD Wing, he was responsible for overseeing individual and collective training standardisation and assessment for the entire force.

Mike also specialised in chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) defence. In one senior staff appointment, he led the collective training effort for multinational CBRN forces assigned to NATO’s Response Force.  His last role before leaving was as the British Army Land Warfare Centre lead for collective training in Air-Land Integration.

Joining the UK Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) in 2009, Mike led the CBRN specialist training team at Dstl for a number of years, and fulfilled a variety of other roles in Dstl before joining DASA.

Mike is married to Angela, and has 2 university-age children, Thomas and Sophie.  He is an amateur luthier and lutenist, paraglider pilot and enthusiastic angler.

Bio to follow

Trevor Nash

Trevor Nash

Editor, Shephard Media

I served in the Royal Artillery from 1973 to 1986 specialising in tactical battlefield nuclear weapons and air defence. I attended the Gunnery Staff Course (Guided Weapons) and undertook a number of staff and instructional tours. On leaving the British Army I became a Programme/Marketing Manager – later Marketing Director - at a company specialising in display and image generators for flight simulators. A great fun job that gave me the opportunity to learn to fly.

Leaving in 1990 to work for a German publishing company as their UK/Scandinavian Editor and Editor of their simulation and training magazine, I became a freelance writer working for a number of publishing companies, including Jane’s, where I worked for nine years editing Jane’s Simulation & Training Systems yearbook.

During this period, I created The Write Partnership Ltd that specialised in publishing training newsletters and magazines, contract publishing.

I have a BA (Hons) in Modern History and an MA in Air Power Studies from the University of Birmingham. That was so much fun that I’m now just half way through a part-time PhD.

NCI Agency, NATO

NCI Agency, NATO

Representative TBC

More information to follow