Speaking at the International Security Expo on Thursday 29th November, the Security Minister Ben Wallace MP said that “collaboration and cooperation between Government and you the security industry are fundamental to keeping people safe.” The chair of the UK Security and Resilience Industry Suppliers’ Community (RISC), Sir Kevin Tebbit, made the very same point the day before at the Expo, arguing that there must be close engagement between Government and the UK’s Security and Resilience Sector to support national security objectives. During his speech Sir Kevin also presented the findings from a new RISC report on the same broad topic.

RISC is the primary channel of communication for Government to discuss the security industry’s contribution to national security issues. RISC itself is an alliance of a wider range of trade associations, suppliers and other organisations, the core members being ADS, techUK and the British Security Industry Association (BSIA). At the direction of Sir Kevin Tebbit, RISC recently undertook a review of its engagement with Government on security issues, partly to improve the internal cohesion of the suppliers’ community, and partly to strengthen the relationship between industry and Government.

As part of this work RISC undertook a comprehensive ‘stock-taking’ exercise, mapping out the existing engagement between RISC’s members and the Government and its associated agencies. RISC found that there are up to fifty Government bodies with which industry engages on a sustained basis, and that there are some organisations of central importance, including the Joint Security and Resilience Centre (JSaRC), the Department for International Trade’s Defence and Security Organisation (DIT DSO) and the Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA).

At the heart of RISC’s report was a thematic approach to four cross-cutting areas of engagement: exports, procurement, innovation and skills. RISC has recommended that DIT DSO should continue to build upon their whole-of-Government approach to identifying export potential; that the Security and Resilience Growth Partnership (SRGP – a high-level body composed of Government and industry representatives, jointly chaired by the chairman of RISC and the Security Minister) and JSaRC should treat security procurement as a priority area; that the Government should produce a coordinated, outcomes-led roadmap for innovation in national security; and that industry and Government should work together to tackle key skills gaps.

RISC’s attention will now turn to the implementation of the report’s recommendations, all in support of national security objectives. If you are interested to find out more about this report and RISC, then please do get in touch with the RISC Secretariat, which is currently provided by ADS: hugo.rosemont@adsgroup.org.uk and nathan.mathiot@adsgroup.org.uk