Skip to main content
KBS_Icon_questionmark link-ico

Hacking 4 MoD

Mission Driven Entrepreneurship™: Hacking for MoD (H4MOD) is an innovative program originating at Stanford University in 2016, which allows students to apply hands-on entrepreneurial and innovative methods to work on real-world government defence problems.


During the module, the students learn and apply Lean Start-up principles to a UK defence problem. Students work in small teams, each team choosing an existing problem set provided by UK Ministry of Defence that will be worked on through the course of the module. The learning-by-doing mentality is critical to success in H4MOD, as it is the primary way students gain practice with the skills and concepts that H4MOD seeks to teach them. Thus, students conduct interviews with stakeholders and test their hypotheses against solutions for defence problems between classes.

Overall, the core aim of H4MOD is to give students a framework to prioritise problems and test hypotheses and solutions at a pace. Accordingly, the module simulates what start-ups and entrepreneurship are like in the real world: the need to take conceptually sound decisions amidst uncertainty, challenging deadlines, and often conflicting input.

The first H4MoD programme was piloted at DSD in 2019, with the fourth iteration of the course kicking off in January 2022. H4MoD is a core unit on the MSc Defence Innovation, which launched in September 2021.  

H4MOD is supported by the Common Mission Project and is sponsored by the Ministry of Defence.

Common Mission Project

Common Mission Project

A registered UK charity creating an international network of entrepreneurs to solve real-time…

Hacking for MoD - Throwing Down the Gauntlet

"If you accept it, the H4MoD Lean Start-Up adventure will test and excite you in equal measure – and the prize is worth it. You will develop cutting edge skills, an innovative attitude of mind and an unparalleled network - importantly, you will make a difference."

Former Defence Studies H4MoD Student Lt Col Frank Reeves discusses his time on the programme:


News and blogs