Manning the ‘Unmanned’

UNSW Canberra Academics Involved: 
Dr Lindsay Clark

Having filed a report to the British government as part of the Birmingham Policy Commissions on the legality, morality and political issues faced by military drone crews, Dr Lindsay Clark now has her sights set on Australian military policy. 

The use of armed drones such as Reapers and Predators has long raised questions. Clark’s work looks at policy development in an environment of increasing distance between adversaries. She also observes how this development affects our concept of military masculinity. 

“I’ve been speaking with the people who are setting up a Reaper-type capability in Australia,” she says. “They have been tasked with looking at the barriers to setting up a drone capability, and how that fits within the Defence community.” 

Clark’s work has been conducted with the aim of producing a policy brief to go out to the air power community. Users of Clark’s work include British and Australian policy makers and academics, lobby groups and the general public. 

Clark has recently been awarded her first publishing contract for a book on gender and drone warfare. She is also active on social media. 

“Social media is important in terms of keeping a conversation going,” she says. “It points you to sources of information that you might not always come across and it gives you a capacity to engage with a multiplicity of voices.”