Presented by Capital Factory

How Defense Innovation in Austin was Pioneered

Austin has become the epicenter of defense innovation, sprouting a multi-billion-dollar defense industry in a place not known for its military presence. In 2014, Bunker Labs launched in Austin to help military-connected entrepreneurs start and scale businesses. Since then, Department of Defense organizations like the Defense Innovation Unit, AFWERX, Army Futures Command, Texas Military Department, and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency have chosen Austin for keeping defense innovation weird. This panel will feature some of the pioneers who laid the groundwork as government employees for what we see today. Attendees will learn (1) the origin story of defense innovation in Austin, (2) what these organizations accomplish together, and (3) how to keep defense innovation weird.

Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.

photo of Samantha Snabes
photo of Paul Vicars
Paul Vicars

United States Air Force

photo of Zach Walker
Zach Walker

Defense Innovation Unit (DIU)

photo of Johnathan Wojtewicz
Johnathan Wojtewicz

Bunker Labs Austin / Bunker Incubator, NFP.

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