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Hema Karunadasa, Wendy Mao, Adam Jaffe and Yu Lin

Jeffrey Decker

Jeffrey Decker

Program Director, Precourt Institute for Energy

Jeff Decker is managing director and co-instructor of Hacking for Defense at Stanford University. Hacking for Defense uses the Lean Startup technique to tackle complex problems critical to the government around national security, energy networks, cyber security, and AI, and develops new technologies with teams of engineers, scientists, MBA’s and policy experts. With the program, I have taught more than 250 students, faculty, and government personnel user-centered design at more than two dozen colleges and universities, helping them solve more than 40 unique national security challenges for the Defense Department and related industries. Several student teams have gone on to form companies winning Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, gaining venture capital funding, and one team even became a program of record. Our work and research with H4D focuses generally on defense innovation and dual-use technologies, with a focus on developing go-to-defense market strategies for technology startups and fostering defense-industry partnerships. With my Lean Startup experience and expertise with Hacking for Defense, plus my military service, I work with national security and help solve Defense Department challenges.

I served in the U.S. Army as a 2nd Ranger Battalion light infantry squad leader in Iraq and Afghanistan. Following my service, I earned a MS in International Relations (Laws), and a doctorate in International Relations before conducting national security and international affairs research at the RAND Corporation.