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Twenty-First Century Manoeuvre

19-20 June 2018

Held annually on behalf of the Chief of the General Staff, this conference reflected on the breadth of challenges confronting today’s land forces in a global security environment characterised by constant competition and unpredictability.

For the 2018 conference presentations, click here

This year the Land Warfare Conference, held annually on behalf of the Chief of the General Staff, considered how land forces can achieve competitive advantage from 2025 and beyond.

The international system is undergoing a major transition – the unipolar world has disappeared, replaced by uncertainty and instability. At the same time, the tempo of technological change and the pervasiveness of information are driving changes in the character of conflict. It is not yet clear where the intersection of these changes will lead and where the next competitive advantage will come from, whether on the battlefield or beyond.

Regardless of those changes in the character of conflict, land-based forces will continue to act within the framework of manoeuvre – seeking always a position of advantage over adversaries.

The conference sessions explored the following themes:

  • How has manoeuvre evolved through history? Is it now more than three dimensional?
  • What doctrine, capabilities and structures will be needed to out-manoeuvre adversaries?
  • How will Land capabilities contribute to successful outcomes at the operational and strategic levels?
  • International Chiefs Panel: How will allies manoeuvre beyond 2025?
  • What are the human factors that bear on 21st Century manoeuvre?
  • How should armies train for 21st Century manoeuvre?
  • Closing Keynote: Chief of the General Staff

Speakers included

  • The Rt Hon Mark Lancaster TD MP, Minister of State for the Armed Forces
  • General Mark Carleton-Smith, Chief of the General Staff
  • Gen Salvatore Farina, Chief of Staff, Italian Army
  • LTG Joseph Anderson, Deputy Chief of Staff, Headquarters Department of the Army G-3/5/7
  • LTG Christopher Cavoli, Commander, US Army Europe
  • Lt Gen Patrick Sanders, Commander Field Army
  • Major Kitty McKendrick, CGS Fellow, Chatham House
  • WO1 Glenn Haughton, Army Sergeant Major

  • Lord Hague of Richmond
  • Dr Karin von Hippel, Director-General, RUSI
  • Prof Hugh Durrant-Whyte, Chief Scientific Advisor, MOD
  • Dr David Kilcullen, CEO, Cordillera Applications Group
  • Gen Sir Rupert Smith, Author ‘Utility of Force’
  • LTG (Retd) Ben Hodges, Pershing Chair, Center for European Policy Analysis
  • Ms Elisabeth Braw, Senior Consultant, Control Risks
  • Lt Gen (Retd) Prof Sir Paul Newton, Director SSI, Exeter University