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David Seers - Canungra

Leafy hinterland hills have been replaced with dusty mountain ranges for Canungra resident David Seers, who has deployed with the Army to Afghanistan to make sure the local military is being helped in the best way.

Though typically posted to Kodoka Barracks, David is overseas monitoring the performance of Afghan Special Forces who are being trained and advised by NATO-led international mission.

David's team monitors things such as unit performance, leadership traits and behaviours to make sure the international mission is on track.

"If we identify problems early enough, we can highlight it to the Afghan command and that allows them to take the appropriate action," he said.

"The Afghan Army doesn't have the same reporting systems as we have, they don't have the IT we have, so we're able to transition information rapidly to the Afghan commander."

Data arrives monthly from the NATO's advisor teams that can also suggest to the Afghans on who might be suitable for leading their troops.

"We can identify commanders that are right for promotion, who are performing extremely well," David said.

"We can recommend to the Afghan Special Forces which members are the future and the way ahead.

"It also allows us to identify potential areas of concern like governance requirements and potential corruption issues that might require attention from Afghan command."

David's team looks at additional metrics including the tribal background of leaders and subordinates, the performance of a group and how it all links to the performance of a kandak (battalion) or company of soldiers.

By learning what works best the analysts can offer it for use in other Special Forces groups.

David said data analysis on the Afghan Special Forces was needed to ensure the advisory mission was on track.

"We're moving from years ago when we were conducting very tactical level training," he said.

"Now, we're advising predominantly at the corps level.

"At the lower level, we're using contractors to provide the training and the military members are providing mentorship to higher levels.

"We need to analyse this and see if it's the best solution for the road ahead."

David is an infantry officer with a background in training who moved to Canungra about a year ago to work at the Army's Land Warfare Centre.

"It's up away from the coast so it gets quite cool in winter but quite pleasant in summer," he said.

"It's close enough to the beaches but also far enough away that you're not annoyed by some of the other things that happen on the coast."

David arrived in Afghanistan in early October and it will be about a year before he finishes his deployment.

"The Canungra locals are fantastic," he said.

"They're very accepting of the military and very supportive of the group they have over the hill."

David is deployed to Afghanistan as part of the Australian Defence Force's Operation Highroad.

Operation Highroad is the Australian Defence Force's commitment to Afghanistan supporting the NATO-led train, advise and assist mission called Resolute Support which has replaced the previous NATO-led International Security Assistance Force mission.

Around 270 ADF members from the Royal Australian Navy, the Australian Army, the Royal Australian Air Force and Defence civilians are deployed in Afghanistan as part of Operation Highroad.