Talk:Defence Science and Technology Laboratory

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At what point does this stop being a stub, there is obviously lots more information that could be here, but it is quite comprehensive at the moment. --Thegraham 23:40, 6 January 2006 (UTC)

Well apparently now, because I've removed the stub :p --Thegraham 23:49, 10 January 2006 (UTC)

Moved from DSTL because Dstl is what they call themselves --Khendon 11:39, 13 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Can we not just skip the aggrieved employee rant, please? --Khendon 13:46, 8 October 2005 (UTC)

Seriously, this;

Its status as an Executive Agency means that the Terms and Conditions of its staff are now significantly worse than those of the parent Department and DSTL has been the subject of much criticism regarding the high turnover and poor retention of its staff, particularly among its graduate intake.

...just isn't encyclopaedic. It's of interest to nobody except employees, who doubtless have their own opinions already. It's also inaccurate; its status as an executive agency is irrelevant. --Khendon 20:51, 19 October 2005 (UTC)


Although the Laboratory's publications proudly proclaim that 'Dstl is part of the Ministry of Defence', it is run along relatively commercial lines

has a negative POV. The implication is that this "proclamation" is dishonest or inaccurate because it's "run along relatively commercial lines". This latter fact is already covered earlier by the more precise statement that it's a trading fund that manages its own budget and is funded by contracts. --Khendon 06:21, 20 October 2005 (UTC)

DSTL has also been the subject of much criticism regarding the high turnover and poor retention of its staff, particularly among its graduate intake.

This isn't information relevant to an enclyopaedia. As I said above, nobody except employees is likely to care about this. Also, much criticism from who? What are the thresholds for turnover to be considered "high"? Where's the evidence of it? Even if it is true, it can't be included in wikipedia unless it's verifiable. --Khendon 06:21, 20 October 2005 (UTC)

victimisation of Trade Union Representatives is both common and well documented

This is a fairly serious accusation! If it's "well documented", where's the evidence? Without it, it's just mudslinging. --Khendon 06:21, 20 October 2005 (UTC)

Many employees often cite the fact that new entry graduates usually receive higher salaries than existing staff, and there has been on-going concern over the high incidence of work-related stress with DSTL.

Same comments as above, essentially. Do you have an employee opinion survey of some kind, perhaps? Or some evidence of the incidence of work-related stress? Who other than current employees is likely to want to know that new entry graduates usually receive higher salaries than existing staff? --Khendon 06:21, 20 October 2005 (UTC)

I'd back up everything Khendon has to say here. It doesn't look like different users as the text is always the same. Plus, there's no backup for it in the press that I'm aware of; for example, there's no press coverage of TU victimisation or graduate turnover. --da-rb 22:38, 20 October 2005 (UTC)

The Chief Executive is no longer Martin Earwicker but I don't know how to change that part of the page, sorry. bluebear 20:31, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

now fixed Nuttah68 20:38, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

I have worked at dstl and there are definitely problems there, though understandably people are unwilling to put up their personal experiences. So, my group in dstl had bullying and harassment statistics of 23% (Human Systems Group, 2014). So let's keep an open mind. Jas (talk) 16:50, 17 August 2017 (UTC)


The British often decapitalize acronyms which are pronounced as words rather than letters, e.g. Nasa and Aids, but UFO and KGB. So to my friends across the pond I ask, does the decapitalization of DSTL reflect such shift in its pronunciation (and if so, how exactly is "Dstl" pronounced?), or is the style of capitalization merely a stylistic decision by the agency? -- a Yank who's never had the pleasure of hearing the word/acronym read aloud, AKA Severinus 06:55, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

It's merely a stylistiv decision. The acronym is pronounced with each of the four letters voiced individually. JH 08:38, 25 October 2006 (UTC)
Good to know, thanks. --Severinus 22:55, 25 October 2006 (UTC)


Drama Squad Television Live —Preceding unsigned comment added by Doggie777777788 (talkcontribs) 02:11, 23 May 2009 (UTC)

I don't see how this is relevant to the DSTL page. Spiral2525 (talk) 15:17, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

Strange paragraph[edit]

What is the encyclopaedic value of:

"The reason Dstl survives as a sustainable business is in part because its scientific and engineering expertise is trusted by its MOD customers - because Dstl has no commercial interests or aspirations and its employees are rewarded for commitment to supporting MOD. Dstl's independence has been disputed in areas where Dstl has a capability to sustain which survives on work similar to that done in industry (e.g. some capabilities were split between Dstl and QinetiQ and if the overall funding is reduced, dispute over which organisation should downsize can occur). Since its formation Dstl has reduced its profit margins year-on-year, increasing the value of its services to its customers."

The above reads like a rant and there is no references as to where these opinions have come from. Suggest it is deleted. --Bizzle1234 (talk) 14:51, 24 October 2009 (UTC)

I agree. I deleted it. --Hroðulf (or Hrothulf) (Talk) 14:50, 8 December 2010 (UTC)


Some of the quotations from Dstl material may be too long and don't seem to be clearly attributed. Sources may include

I added a {{non-free}} banner.

--Hroðulf (or Hrothulf) (Talk) 19:19, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

I disagree. The sources section clearly shows that the page uses material from the DSTL website, one of the best sources of information about DSTL. Spiral2525 (talk) 15:20, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

But unless that content is freely licensed, we are generally forbidden from using it directly. Editors can write their own words using the facts cited to the source. As you say, a source of "information" not actual text/wording. Unless it's something like a mission-statement, I can't think of anything about any company or government entity that could not be written as new prose rather than cobbling together quotes from the topic itself. Further, wikipedia is strongly based on multiple sources, and especially secondary sources, not just the topic-entity itself. That helps counteract any bias (in wording, omission, or alternative perspective) obviously inherent in any self-sourced writing. Please see WP:RS for details. DMacks (talk) 15:31, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
even with proper attribution there are limits to the amount of copyright content that can be cut and paste reproduced.Active Banana (bananaphone 15:28, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

I believe I've sorted this now; and inserted relevant third party references, noting that it's a government organisation and therefore a certain amount of what they say seems acceptable under the Policy as linked. Da-rb (talk) 18:56, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Updates to Dstl website and Chairman[edit]

The link to the Dstl website in the agency overview box on the right hand side is incorrect, taking people to an old site. Website address should be

Sir Richard Mottram stood down as Chairman of the Board in 2014, being replaced by Sir David Pepper on 1 August 2014. Press release for this information is at

(Dstl Press (talk) 14:03, 13 January 2015 (UTC))

Yes check.svg Done Thanks for drawing it to our attention. --Hroðulf (or Hrothulf) (Talk) 15:38, 14 January 2015 (UTC)

Links and content update[edit]


In the first paragraph, please change '2012/13' to '2014/15'. 93% is correct.

Replace the last paragraph and bullets with the following:

Dstl consists of the following operational divisions:

  • Chemical, Biological and Radiological
  • Counter Terrorism and Security
  • Cyber and Information Systems
  • Defence and Security Analysis
  • Platform Systems


Remove current content and replace with the following:

Following a review and consultation process initiated by MOD's Chief Scientific Adviser, Dstl became responsible for the formulation and commission of MOD's non-nuclear research programme from 1 April 2010, under the responsibility of the DST Programme Office.[15][16]

Dstl carries out a broad range of work from high-level analysis to support Ministry of Defence policy and procurement decisions, to technical research in defence areas such as biomedical science and electronics, alongside operational work such as forensic analysis of explosives[12] and providing paid volunteer scientists to Iraq and Afghanistan to provide rapid scientific advice to British forces. It has done work for around 40 government departments and agencies including the Home Office and Department for Transport.[13] It undertakes research with both industry and academia to fulfill its remit.[14]

Notes and references

Amend the links as follows:

3. 4. 5. 8. Remove - out of date 13. 14.

Dstl Press (talk) 15:20, 23 July 2015 (UTC)


"In 2015 Dstl completed a major reorganisation, merging 12 operating Departments into five Divisions on 1 April 2015. The motivation behind this change was to enable more coherent and productive delivery to customers and simplify access routes for suppliers." I've quickly scanned through the 102 pages of the 2014-5 Annual Report, given as a citation for this, and didn't spot any reference to it. JH (talk page) 09:59, 19 February 2016 (UTC)

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