Over two years after the Strategic Defence and Security Review the realities of Defence under austerity are now clear; delivering assured capability requires ever greater agility and innovation in a world of constantly emerging and evolving threats.
Building on last year’s event, the RUSI Land Warfare Conference 2013 will examine the British Army’s ongoing adaptation in response to Army 2020’s strategic direction and its central role in defence and security, at the heart of joint forces at home and overseas, contributing across national policy.
On behalf of the Chief of the General Staff, the conference will promote professional debate on the basis of land power’s enduring utility. It will bring together a domestic audience of representatives from across the Armed Forces, wider government, non-governmental organisations, academia and defence industry. Critically, given the international context of much of the debate, it will host many overseas delegates including many of the UK’s most valued allies and partners.
The conference programme is built around several core themes:
Strategic Understanding – consideration of the world’s current and emerging security threats, the Army’s likely operating environments and its capability requirements; incorporating international and industry perspectives on opportunities for further collaboration.
Contingency – questioning conceptions of the term, historical interpretations and experiences, and what its notional ‘return’ may look like under joint command and the force’s routine use at lower political risk; as well as allied approaches to provision of contingent capabilities under enduring austerity and assumptions of operating within alliances.
Defence Engagement – examining the structures and capabilities required for upstream capacity building and conflict prevention, working independently or with allies or partners, as well as our own cross-governmental mechanisms for marshalling diplomatic, development and defence activities around a truly integrated strategy; drawing on expertise from across government, as well as partnered and host countries.
The Army in Society – exploring perceptions of the Army’s place in society in the run up to Armed Forces Day; perceptions from the population it serves, honouring the covenant, recruitment and community engagement, implications of regional basing and the enhanced integration of reserves, as well as future roles within homeland resilience.
This year’s Land Warfare Conference aims to both inform and engage a broad range of serving personnel, the security and defence community, and especially non-traditional participants, thereby offering a fresh perspective on the development of ideas that will inform the British Army’s future development and ensuring continued success on operations.