Bryden Spurling

Bryden Spurling
Senior Research Leader, Defence and Security


Master of International and Community Development in international development, Deakin University


Bryden Spurling is a senior research leader with RAND Europe, focusing on defence and security. Spurling specialises in strategy and assessing strategic-level opportunities and challenges; public policy design and development; and defence policy and capability. He has worked with governments and research organisations across Europe on Indo-Pacific assessments, China, hybrid warfare, Russia, Ukraine, teaching strategy, and climate change and its impact on security, among others.  

Prior to joining RAND, Spurling was a strategist at the Australian Department of Defence for over a decade, leading the department’s highest-level classified planning document, the Defence Planning Guidance, and contributing to the 2013 Defence White Paper and the 2020 Defence Strategic Update. Bryden managed defence policy on a range of issues, including Iran, North Korea, and Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. He directed the precursor to the Australian Government’s Pacific Step-Up; was a policy advisor on the department’s COVID-19 Taskforce; and wrote the department’s first dedicated policy on climate change. 

Spurling has also worked across a number of other roles in foreign and economic policy, in government and politics. He was an adviser to Australia’s Chief Scientist; and the science, higher education and foreign policy adviser to Senator Natasha Stott Despoja AO, in Australia's Federal Parliament.

Spurling received his Master's in international development from Deakin University.