August Cole is an author exploring the future of conflict through fiction and other forms of “FICINT” [Fictional Intelligence] storytelling. His talks, short stories, and workshops have taken him from speaking at the Nobel Institute in Oslo to presenting on future warfare at SXSW Interactive to lecturing at West Point. With Peter W. Singer, he is the co-author of the best-seller ‘Ghost Fleet: A Novel of the Next World War’ (2015) and ‘Burn In: A Novel of the Real Robotic Revolution’ (2020). He is a co-founder and a managing partner at Useful Fiction, which works at the center of narrative, foresight, and change management focused on defence and security. Useful Fiction’s work with US, UK, and other allied militaries and government agencies includes commissioned fictional narratives and visual art, narrative communications and leadership training, and mentoring.
August is also a non-resident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center on Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council; he directed the Council’s Art of Future Warfare Project, which explored creative works for insight into the future of conflict, from its inception in 2014 through 2017. A former journalist with The Wall Street Journal and CBS MarketWatch, August is a regular speaker to private sector, academic and US and allied government audiences. He has worked on AI futures and ethics projects in various governmental, private sector, and non-governmental capacities.