Major General (retd.) Andrew Sharpe

Director of the British Army’s Centre for Analysis and Conflict Research Strategy and Security Institute

During 34 years of military service, and nine operational tours, Andrew Sharpe commanded on operations in all ranks from second-lieutenant to brigadier. In addition to his service in the Field Army, he has held posts that have required the leading of operational and strategic planning, both nationally and in international coalitions, forming strategic concepts and turning them into effective operational and tactical execution.

He was the Deputy Commandant of the UK Joint Services Command and Staff College and the Director of the UK Higher Command and Staff Course. He left the British Army as a Major General, completing his military career as the Director of the UK MoD’s independent think-tank: the DCDC. For three years he ran the UK Chief of Defence Staff’s Strategic Advisory Panel.

Doctor Sharpe is the Director of the British Army’s Centre for Historical Analysis and Conflict Research and a Senior Mentor on the British Army’s generalship programme. In addition, as an independent consultant, he has partnered with governments, international organisations and businesses to provide strategic, operational and leadership advice, support and mentoring.

CONFERENCE DAY ONE | 16 SEPTEMBER

Thursday, September 17th, 2020

17:30 PANEL DISCUSSION: LEGISLATION FOR AI-ENABLED TECHNOLOGIES

·          Innovation is largely driven by the commercial sector, outpacing the defence enterprise. How should militaries reform procurement to circumvent lengthy bureaucratic procedures and field game-changing technologies at pace? How should militaries approach experimentation to drive innovation into the hands of the Warfighter?
·          AI certification and integration on platforms remains to be a challenge due to the lack of a legislative framework to support autonomy. Integrating data on autonomous platforms is complicated by legal and ethical complexities, as the human has to remain in the loop of decision-making. What provisions need to be taken to simplify AI certification and ensure data reliability?
·          Information sharing is key to driving innovation. How can information sharing and collaboration between militaries, armed forces, academia, intelligence services, and the commercial sector be improved? 

CONFERENCE DAY TWO | 17 SEPTEMBER

Thursday, September 17th, 2020

14:00 PANEL DISCUSSION: DATA MANAGEMENT & VALIDATION IN A CYBER-CONTESTED ENVIRONMENT

·          It is widely recognised that unlocking the power of big data maximises operational success. Due to the huge potential of advanced analytics, armed forces have prioritised the integration of data-driven capabilities to enhance complex decision-making. However, deep learning data cannot be trusted without verification, as opponents have become capable to infiltrate data sources and corrupt them. What challenges are militaries facing with data validation? What solutions could mitigate these risks?
·          The volume, variety, velocity, and veracity of data is undergoing changes, as data is derived from disparate sources. How can data fusion and visualisation improve to reduce the cognitive load? How should data management transform to reduce silo effect and ensure accessibility? 

16:15 PANEL DISCUSSION: DISINFORMATION STRATEGY IN THE DIGITAL AGE

·          Disinformation alters perceptions and changes the behaviour of the target audience. Influence or attacks via Cyberspace or the Twittersphere pose an existential threat to security. How should militaries respond and reap the benefits of social media as a disinformation platform? How should armed forces use cyberspace in future information warfare? What data analytics should be utilised to convert data from social media into actionable intelligence?
·          Commanders are disoriented and dislocated by the blizzard of information from a multitude of sources. What data tools should militaries utilise to focus on the right issues and data sets?
·          How should leaders in the armed forces drive innovation and experimentation? What R&D efforts are currently pursued and what are the inhibitors to absorbing game-changing technologies from the commercial sector?

Check out the incredible speaker line-up to see who will be joining Andrew.

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