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Immediate Release

DARPA Deputy Director Appointed First Chief Executive Officer of UK Advanced Research and Invention Agency

The Department of Defense announced today that Dr. Peter Highnam, Deputy Director, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, will join the United Kingdom’s Advanced Research and Invention Agency (ARIA) as its first CEO on May 3, 2022. ARIA, modeled in part on the U.S. Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) and DARPA, will broadly invest in high-risk projects at the frontier of discovery and innovation that could transform people’s lives for the better. 

“I am extremely pleased and proud that Peter has been selected for this important position,” said Heidi Shyu, Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, who oversees DARPA. “His appointment as CEO from DARPA is emblematic of the strong partnership between our two countries, and I look forward to a long and fruitful collaboration with ARIA.”

Highnam joined DARPA in February 2018 as deputy director and served as acting director on two occasions. He has previously held positions as the director of research at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and as director of the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity. Highnam also worked at the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services from 2003 to 2009, serving as senior advisor in the National Institutes of Health. Born in the U.K., he obtained his undergraduate degree from the University of Manchester, his master’s degree at the University of Bristol, and has a PhD in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University.

About USD(R&E) 

The Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (USD(R&E) is the Chief Technology Officer of the Department of Defense. The USD(R&E) champions research, science, technology, engineering, and innovation to maintain the United States military’s technological advantage. Learn more at www.cto.mil, follow us on Twitter @DoDCTO, or visit us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/ousdre.