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Aditi Kumar, Deputy Director of Defense Innovation Unit (DIU)

Aditi Kumar, Deputy Director of Defense Innovation Unit (DIU)

Aditi Kumar, the Deputy Director of DIU, has been an excellent executive in helping the military and defense departments acquire their needs and capabilities. Read on, get inspired, and learn more about her success and achievements.



Aditi Kumar will speak at the POC’s  10th Annual Defense R&D Summit on January 31, 2024. Reserve your seat and register here.


Aditi Kumar, Deputy Director of Defense Innovation Unit


Aditi Kumar, Deputy Director of Defense Innovation Unit
Image from DIU


Ms. Aditi Kumar serves at the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) as Deputy Director for Strategy, Policy, and National Security Partnerships. Included in her role is to oversee the collaborations of DIU among government entities. Kumar primarily helps to obtain the warfighter capabilities and requirements across the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Military Departments, and the Office of the Secretary of Defense.


Ms. Kumar is a senior executive at DIU. Since 2021, she has held several positions at the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). It includes Senior Advisor roles for Industrial Policy and Acquisition and Sustainment.


Educational Background

Aditi Kumar bmoved to Missouri from India when she was nine years old. In the U.S., she had a broad record of academic excellence.


  • Master’s Degree in International Relations at Harvard Kennedy School (2015 – 2018)
  • Master of Business Administration at Harvard Business School (2015 – 2018)
  • Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts in Finance and International Studies at The Wharton School (2006 – 2010)
  • Political Science and Government at Sciences Po Lyon – Institut d’Etudes Politiques (2008)


Career and Leadership Timeline

Before her current position at DIU, Aditi honed her skills and experiences from different roles and companies. Let’s take a look at Aditi Kumar’s career and leadership timeline.


  • 2007-2010: Consultant at Wharton Small Business Development Center
  • 2009: Analyst at Federal Reserve Bank of New York
  • 2013-2014: Project Manager at World Economic Forum
  • 2010-2013: Consultant at Oliver Wyman
  • 2013-2015: Engagement Manager at Oliver Wyman
  • 2016: Summer Analyst at U.S. Department of the Treasury
  • 2018: Principal at Oliver Wyman
  • 2018-2021: Executive Director, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard Kennedy School
  • 2021: Senior Advisor for Industrial Policy at DoD
  • 2022-2023: Senior Advisor for Acquisition & Sustainment (A&S) at DoD
  • Deputy Director for DIU under the DoD


Aditi Kumar: Speaker at 10th Annual Defense R&D Summit


10th Annual Defense R&D Summit


The Potomac Officers Club has invited prominent leaders and experts to speak at the 10th Annual Defense R&D Summit. Invited speakers, including Aditi Kumar and Hon. Heidi Shyu, will discuss the developments in defense technology.


We invite you to join the summit on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, from 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.


Notable Contributions of Aditi Kumar 

Aditi Kumar on DIU Acquisition of Australian military watercraft
Image by TWPG from Australian Defence Magazine


Aditi Kumar has been integral to policy developments during her service at Harvard Kennedy School and as well as at Oliver Wyman. She also headed the Role of Financial Services in Society initiatives at the World Economic Forum.


During her time at A&S, Ms. Kumar helped with some of the Department’s most important assignments, such as helping to keep Ukraine secure, increasing and speeding up industrial production, managing supply chain risk, and developing policy for military bases and housing.

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Tags: 10th Annual Defense R&D Summit Aditi Kumar Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs Defense Innovation Unit DIU DoD Heidi Shyu Office of the Secretary of Defense U.S. Department of the Treasury World Economic Forum