Robert Work, United States Deputy Secretary of Defense: The Third Offset Strategy and America's Allies and Partners

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RUSI welcomed Robert Work, United States Deputy Secretary of Defense, to give a lecture on 'The Third Offset Strategy and America's Allies and Partners'.

Mr Work spoke about the Third Offset Strategy and the critical role this effort, in concert with US Allies and Partners, will play in strengthening conventional deterrence. The United States has long relied on offset strategies to overcome the numerical and geographic advantages of potential adversaries. Technological superiority and new operational concepts have been a hallmark of every one. One of the most critical elements to the success of the Second Offset Strategy in the 1980s was the importance of US allied participation.  


The Third Offset Strategy is a Department of Defense-wide effort to identify new operational concepts and capabilities to sustain and advance America’s military dominance well into the future. The Third Offset Strategy will ensure the United States military maintains a significant capability overmatch against any opponent, particularly advanced states that are investing in high-end anti-access, area-denial capabilities. A key part of the Third Offset Strategy will be discussing and pursuing this innovation with Allied nations. 

Robert O Work was confirmed as the 32nd Deputy Secretary of Defense on April 30, 2014. Mr Work most recently served as Chief Executive Officer of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS).  From 2009 to 2013, he served as the Undersecretary of the Navy.  In this capacity, he was the Deputy and Principal Assistant to the Secretary of the Navy and acted with full authority of the Secretary in the day-to-day management of the Department of the Navy. In 2008, Mr. Work served on President-elect Barack Obama’s Department of Defense Transition Team as leader of the Department of the Navy issues team.  He also worked on the defense policy, acquisition, and budget teams. In 2002, Mr. Work joined the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA), first as the Senior Fellow for Maritime Affairs, and later as the Vice President for Strategic Studies. Mr Work was also an adjunct professor at George Washington University, where he taught defense analysis and roles and missions of the armed forces. Mr Work was a distinguished graduate of the Naval Reserve Officers Training Course at the University of Illinois, and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps in August 1974. During his 27- year military career, he held a wide range of command, leadership, and management positions. He commanded an artillery battery and a battalion, and was the base commander at Camp Fuji, Japan. His last assignment was as Military Assistant and Senior Aide to the Honorable Richard Danzig, 71st secretary of the Navy. His military and civilian awards include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and the Navy Distinguished Civilian Service Award.

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