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The second International Cyber Symposium will be co-hosted at Church House by the Royal United Services Institute and the Ministry of Defence.

Following the success of last year’s Symposium hosted by France at the École Militaire in Paris and entitled ‘Digital Combat at the Heart of Military Operations’, the Secretary of State for Defence, the Rt Hon Michael Fallon MP, is keen to continue the momentum with this two day conference.

To help develop relationships and collaborative processes on a multinational level, the Ministry of Defence has invited officials from over 30 nations, including European allies, the Five Eyes community, partners in the campaign against Daesh, and from across the Asia-Pacific. Senior industrialists and other representatives from the private sector and experts from across academia and the independent analytical communities will also participate and provide perspectives on how nation states might use cyberspace in warfare. The symposium will also highlight the RUSI Cyber Security Research themes for the coming year.

Entitled, ‘Cyberspace and the Transformation of 21st Century Warfare’, the symposium will explore how the integration of cyberspace into current operational practices and broader national strategy is a challenge faced by all nations. The symposium will provide a platform to look at best practice and the development of norms for future action.

The programme will cover the following themes:

Session One: The Military function in a National Cyber Strategy

Understanding how the military instrument contributes to the delivery of national cyber strategies including both the functions of defending the nation and projecting national power as well as considering the relationship with national skills development and the technology base.

Session Two: Perspectives on the Current Threat Environment

Assessing the evidence for how state and non-state actors are already making use of cyberspace for the delivery of tactical and strategic effects and the implications for the development of military capabilities.

Session Three: Challenges for Military Operations in Cyberspace

Considering the range of challenges for the conduct of military operations in cyberspace, including:  cost/benefit analysis against traditional capabilities; building an appropriately skilled workforce; and the implications for other capability areas such as intelligence and electronic warfare.

Session Four: The Role of Industry in supporting Military Cyberspace Operations

Discussing the ways in which industry can contribute to the development of military operations in and through cyberspace, including situational awareness, resilience against cyber attack and the delivery of effect.

Session 5: Laws and Norms – The Ethics of Military Operations in Cyberspace

Moving beyond the Tallinn Manual to consider the contemporary operating environment in cyberspace and developments towards a normative framework and international law.

Session 6: Towards Full Spectrum Operations – Integrating Cyberspace

Focusing on operators’ perspectives on the challenges of integrating operations in cyberspace and the delivery of full spectrum opportunities and capabilities.


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