Skip to content
Recruiting now.Explore navy careers

New cohort of sailors join RAF colleagues for innovation course

Sailors and personnel from the RAF have started the next course of the Percy Hobart Fellowship
18 January 2022
Sailors have begun a 12-week course that will encourage them to drive innovation across Defence.

Personnel from the Royal Navy have been joined by people from the Royal Air Force and US Navy for the Percy Hobart Fellowship.

The 43 participants will spend the next few months immersing themselves in all things digital and technology and learning how the latest innovations can enhance defence. It will develop their business skills and give them the chance to come up with solutions that will keep defence at the forefront of technology.

First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Ben Key said: “I congratulate all of those selected for this cohort of the Percy Hobart Fellowship, a one-of-a-kind programme which gives our personnel a cutting edge as we embrace innovation, technology and entrepreneurship.

“Each Fellow has been chosen for their curiosity, commitment and drive and each is fuelled by a desire to develop, to adapt and to make the Royal Navy better.

“I welcome their admission to the Fellowship and look forward to the skills they will bring back to the service when they return after 12 weeks immersion in different ways of thinking and doing.”

Launched in 2020, the Fellowship originally saw only sailors and civil servants from the navy work with industry experts but after its success, it has now been extended to include the RAF and US Navy.

“Each Fellow has been chosen for their curiosity, commitment and drive

First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Ben Key

As previous years, the course is being run by PUBLIC who have organised a selection of speakers to deliver weekly workshops, lectures and sessions.

Meanwhile, the programme’s start-up placement will give the participants first-hand experience on how businesses ensure they are fit for the digital age. They will also receive one-to-one weekly mentoring and coaching sessions from entrepreneurs and performance coaches.

Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshall Sir Mike Wigston said: “The Royal Air Force must be ready to face the threats and challenges of the future.

“This fellowship will inspire aviators from across all ranks to think differently, challenge the status quo and innovate to ensure our competitive edge in a fast-changing world.”

Daniel Korski, chief executive and co-founder of PUBLIC, added: “In the face of some of the most challenging conditions since the end of the Cold War, the country’s fighting force are moving relentlessly to accelerate the pace of innovation.

“The Percy Hobart Fellowship, set to deliver its fourth cohort, has grown to become the Ivy League of innovation training, upskilling defence personnel digitally and empowering them with the knowledge, tools and network to champion innovative and digitally-enabled solutions to problems across defence.”

The fellowship is named after Major General Sir Percy Hobart, a British military engineer responsible for many of the specialised armoured vehicles that took part in the invasion of Normandy and other actions during World War 2.

Related articles

Navy News Magazine

We bring you the latest news, features and award-winning photographs from the front-line. Navy News has been reporting on all that happens in the Royal Navy and its wider community since 1954.