King's Doctoral Workshop on Military Innovation and Defence Reform

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in workshop, seminar, course


Change in military organisations is a complex phenomenon. Armed forces face the recurrent dilemma of anticipating future threats and deployment challenges whilst preserving effectiveness, efficiency, values, and hierarchy. Innovation—defined as a major change in military strategies, doctrines, tactics, technologies, and organisational practices—bears profound consequences going beyond organisational change. History shows that military innovations, or combinations of them, can disrupt balances of power, alter civil-military relations, support civilian technological advances and trigger arms races among countries.
Contributions on the topic of military innovation are rich and wide-ranging. Scholarly contributions focus on key explanatory factors such as patterns of civil-military relations, technological advances, advocacy networks, security competition, cultural and ideational aspects, professional networks, and competition among military services. Additionally, changes in technology, society, economics, and politics can also trigger major military reform and thus affect the incubation, spread, and adoption of innovations. Yet, distinct and competing interpretations illustrate how plural, complex, and multidimensional the process of military innovation can be.
The contemporary world also brings in additional challenges. Technological advancements in artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, hypersonic missiles, and the space realm in the context of rising great power competition move scholarly discussions of military innovation to the centre stage of international politics.
Given the complexity of the topic, this two-day Doctoral Workshop intends to discuss military innovation and military reform through a multidisciplinary, pluri-theoretical, and cross-national perspective.
• Enable doctoral students to advance the knowledge of military innovation studies;
• Connect doctoral students to ECRs and senior scholars on the field;
• Understand the key challenges and strategies officials are adopting to harness military innovations;
• Kickstart a network of young scholars on the subject of military innovation and defence reform;
• Incentivise cutting-edge research debate on defence and military innovation.
Period4 May 20235 May 2023
Event typeConference
LocationLondon, United KingdomShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • Military Innovation
  • Defence
  • Security
  • Defence reform