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Symposium to focus on leadership in military operating environment of 2035

September 23, 2019

Accelerations in artificial intelligence and other sciences and technologies must be considered now for cadets to meet the challenges as leaders on the battlefield of 2035, according to the organizers of the University of North Georgia's (UNG) 2019 Institute for Leadership and Strategic Studies (ILSS) Symposium.

UNG will co-host the two-day event with the U.S. Army War College Strategic Studies Institute to explore educational opportunities that will equip ROTC cadets with the competencies they need to succeed in this complex environment.

"We need to be ahead of the curve in preparing cadets' minds, bodies and leadership skills," said retired Lt. Col. Keith Antonia, associate vice president for military programs at UNG.

Set for Nov. 13-14 on UNG's Dahlonega Campus, the fourth annual event "Soldier-Leaders in the Age of Artificial Intelligence: The Future of Pre-Commissioning Education" has its sights set on 2035, when this fall's freshman cadets will be field-grade officers (majors and lieutenant colonels).

Six speakers are scheduled for the two-day event, including two retired U.S. generals and an active-duty general from Australia. A new wrinkle is a science fiction writing contest, which retired Col. Sharon Hamilton, director of liaison and military operations at UNG, said fits perfectly with the theme of the symposium.

"Science fiction sparks our imagination to think about challenges from a new perspective," she said.

The winning submission will be read at the symposium.

The symposium review committee will select the most relevant and highest-quality submissions for nine to 12 scholars to present and discuss. Undergraduate submissions will be considered for poster sessions. Authors of selected abstracts will be invited to present as members of panels during the symposium. Extended papers from selected abstracts will be published by the University of North Georgia Press in a peer-reviewed, edited print and digital conference proceedings monograph. 

Undergraduates, graduate students and cadets are invited to submit poster proposals (250 words) and short bio (150 words) by Sept. 30 to UNG digital commons.

The event is free to attend for UNG students, faculty and staff; speakers and panelists; and international cadets. The cost is $45 for all others. Registration is required.

Guest speakers for the symposium include:

  • Retired U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Bob Scales is former president and CEO of Walden University and former CEO of Colgen Inc., a defense consultancy specializing in strategic leadership. A recipient of the Silver Star for action during the Vietnam War, Scales finished his 30-year military career as commandant of the U.S. Army War College. In 1995, he created the Army After Next Program, which was the Army's first attempt to build a strategic game and operational concept for future land warfare.
  • Australian Maj. Gen. Mick Ryan, commander of the Australian Defence College, served in Afghanistan and Iraq. He was responsible for the Australian army's contribution to the Defence White Paper and Force Structure Review, design of the army beyond 2020, army experimentation, as well as fostering intellectual debate through the Australian Army Journal and the establishment of the Land Power Forum internet blog.
  • Retired U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. Charles J. Dunlap Jr., the former deputy judge advocate general of the U.S. Air Force, joined the faculty of Duke University School of Law in July 2010. At Duke Law, he is a professor of the practice of law and executive director of the Center on Law, Ethics and National Security. 
  • Candice Frost, director of foreign intelligence for the U.S. Army deputy chief of staff G2 Intelligence.
  • Retired U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Jerry Leverich is the director of Fusion & Assessments Directorate for the G2 Intelligence of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command.
  • Emerson T. Brooking is a resident fellow at the Digital Forensic Research Lab of the Atlantic Council and co-author of "LikeWar: The Weaponization of Social Media." Previously, he was research fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, the youngest researcher in a generation to receive such an appointment. Brooking has served as an adviser on information warfare to the National Security Council, Joint Staff, and U.S. intelligence community.
  • Paul Scharre, senior fellow and director of the Technology and National Security Program at the Center for a New American Society and author of "Army of None: Autonomous Weapons and the Future of War," which won the 2019 Colby Award and was named one of Bill Gates' top five books of 2018. He will speak on the artificial intelligence revolution and the capabilities and limitations of artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies in military applications.

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