Introducing Over the Horizon

By Dr. James Forsyth

Air Command and Staff College has undergone considerable transformation with the intention of shaping future approaches to defense and national security by promoting intellectual curiosity & scholarly debate. As the Chief of Staff of the Air Force noted, we are “out of balance for the challenges that we as a nation are going to face for the next … two decades.” Our emerging security context is uncertain and demands innovative thought to successfully address increasingly complex challenges. It is critical to link the academic, policy, industry, and practitioner communities to develop and discuss ideas that lead to a strong and relevant approach to national security. In line with this spirit, I am proud to announce the launch of Over the Horizon (OTH), a forum to explore innovative thinking on the problems that make up our complex future security landscape.

As national security is a team effort, OTH will bring together experts from disparate communities to engage the challenges that we are starting to discern more clearly. These include voices from the international, interagency, academic, and industry communities. Each of these partners brings different thoughts and contributions to the conversation on how best to consider and approach our shared future challenges.

Though not its entire focus, OTH aims initially to address the concept of multi-domain operations. It intends to examine ideas that lead to strategies and operational constructs that achieve national objectives by fluidly integrating elements of national power in and across domains, including the air, land, maritime, space, cyber, electromagnetic spectrum, and human domains.

Together, we need to explore ways to transform our current paradigms, processes and capabilities into solutions for long-term success. I invite you to read “Over the Horizon” and to contribute to the conversation. I challenge you to strengthen your habits of mind, patterns of inquiry, and critical thinking. We need leaders and thinkers like you preparing to tackle the issues that our complex future has waiting for us just over the horizon.

James W. Forsyth Jr is Dean of the Air Command and Staff College at Maxwell AFB, Alabama. He received his PhD in International Studies from the Joseph Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver, where he studied international and comparative politics and S ecurity studies. His research interests are wide ranging and he has written on great power conflict and war.

Disclaimer: The views expressed are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government.

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