Wired News’ Noah Shactman has an exclusive today on DARPA Director Regina Dugan’s announcement that she will be leaving the agency she’s helmed for three years to take a senior executive level position at Google. Here’s a snippet:
Darpa director Regina Dugan will soon be stepping down from her position atop the Pentagon’s premiere research shop to take a job with Google. Dugan, whose controversial tenure at the agency lasted just under three years, was “offered and accepted at senior executive position” with the internet giant, according to Darpa spokesman Eric Mazzacone. She felt she couldn’t say no to such an “innovative company,” he adds.
Current Deputy Director Ken Gabriel is expected to take on the interim Director role and is a good bet to take on the permanent role, though IARPA head Lisa Porter could also be considered, according to Shactman.
Dugan is responsible for changing a number of policies at the agency that often limited academic researchers from participating in DARPA-sponsored research, including removing the requirement for “go/no-go” decisions on all research and publication pre-clearance review (except in exceptional cases of national security). Dugan also promised the agency would be more cautious in its use of classification and would revamp the proposal process to give office directors and program managers more authority to pursue promising research, and by most indications, has followed through. It’s hard to imagine that Gabriel, who is well known to the academic community having been a professor of electrical and computer engineering and robotics at Carnegie Mellon, wouldn’t continue those policies under his tenure.
We’ll have more detail as it’s available.