Inspiring Doctrinal Innovation (IDI)

Spring 2024 Now Open

Sponsored by: The Curtis E. LeMay Center for Doctrine Development and Education &
Air University Innovation Accelerator (AUiX)

Prompt

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is already changing the way the US Air Force operates. Write an essay on how AI will necessitate changes to US Air Force Doctrine. You may want to consider the following questions while writing your essay:

How will AI transform the Air Force core competencies such as such as air superiority, global integrated intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, rapid global mobility, and global strike?

What are the implications of these changes for specific operational doctrine such as AFDP 3-01 Counterair, AFDP 3-03 Counterland, etc?

What are the challenges to operational level organization and employment posed by the integration of AI into Air Force operations?

Background

The IDI essay contest is a cooperative effort between The LeMay Center and AUiX to accelerate innovation in Air Force doctrine by encouraging Airmen of all ranks and AFSC’s to read, internalize, and debate Air Force doctrine in professional writing and discourse.

2023 Winners

1ST PLACE WINNER

Lt Col Matthew Barry (USAF)

Organizing for Mission Command

Lt Col Matthew Barry is an Air Force pilot with multiple combat deployments in the U-28. He is currently assigned to the Strategic Execution Group at Headquarters Air Force

2nd PLACE WINNER

LtCol Brian Blain (USMC)

USAF Mission Command: Cultural, Organizational and Operational Change to Meet Future Demands

3rd PLACE WINNER

Maj Jerome Limoge III (COANG)

Planning to Fail: Operational Persistence Through Mission Command

How To Participate

Open to all Department of Air Force personnel

and joint/foreign service personnel assigned to an Air Force PME institution

Read the Contest/Submission Guidelines

Make sure you’re familiar with the contest rules.
Read the Contest Guidelines
Read the Submission Guidelines

Prepare Your Essay

Submission Process

Use the form below to upload your essay and provide the necessary details.
BEFORE MAY 5TH, MIDNIGHT

Contest Guidelines

Essay Content, Structure, and Audience:

  • Essays must address the prompt: “How AI will necessitate changes to US Air Force Doctrine.” Essays are highly encouraged to reference USAF or Joint Operational Doctrine Publications (doctrine.af.mil). You may want to consider:

    How will AI transform the Air Force core competencies such as such as air superiority, global integrated intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, rapid global mobility, and global strike?

    What are the implications of these changes for specific operational doctrine such as AFDP 3-01 Counterair, AFDP 3-03 Counterland, etc?

    What are the challenges to operational level organization and employment posed by the integration of AI into Air Force operations?

  • Essays must be greater than 1500 words and less than 3000 words not including footnotes, headers, title, or author’s bio.
  • Your essay should be clearly focused and establish that focus almost immediately, in part by providing a thesis in the first paragraph.
  • Your essay should be well structured over the entire piece, where ideas are developed through the logical, orderly progression of paragraphs.
  • Your essay should also be well organized at the paragraph level, with each paragraph centered on a single, main idea and, your article should provide evidence that logically and clearly supports the content and thesis of your article.
  • A note on evidence: authors may refer to themselves in the first person (e.g., “I could not put down the book”), but personal and professional experience are no substitute for external evidence.
  • Finally, prose is important. Clarity, concision, and directness at the sentence level ensure even the most complicated ideas are presented in an accessible way. Avoid jargon.
  • Your audience does not necessarily share your outlook, background, and store of knowledge; write with that in mind.

Essay Format:

  • Please use AP Style for the content of your piece; that is, for matters including abbreviations, capitalization, forms of address etc.
  • Your article should use the Chicago Manual of Style for formatting and citations. Begin each new paragraph without indenting the first sentence. Use footnotes only—do not use endnotes. Do not include bibliographies or works cited listings.
  • Use one space only between a punctuation mark that ends a sentence and the first word of the next sentence. All punctuation goes within quotation marks in accordance with AP Style.
  • Default to standard American English for spelling and punctuation.
  • Avoid hyperlink citations.

Helpful notes and Resources

  • Doctrine is about warfighting operations and organization. Avoid focusing on specific technologies or government policies. Instead, focus on how the technology changes the application of doctrine or how the interaction of the policy and doctrine creates friction that doctrine can address
  • Read the doctrine that you are proposing to change carefully. Proposed changes may already be covered or may not be appropriate for the operational level of warfare. This contest is focused on operational doctrine and not tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs).
  • If you are relatively new to operational doctrine, we are very excited you are participating. To help you have the best chance at winning, take a moment to either read the doctrine primer on doctrine.af.mil or listen to the What is USAF Doctrine podcast to ensure that your proposed changes are appropriate for doctrine.
    • Doctrine is about warfighting operations and organization. Avoid focusing on specific technologies or government policies. Instead, focus on how the technology changes the application of doctrine or how the interaction of the policy and doctrine creates friction that doctrine can address
    • Read the doctrine that you are proposing to change carefully. Proposed changes may already be covered or may not be appropriate for the operational level of warfare. This contest is focused on operational doctrine and not tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs).
    • If you are relatively new to operational doctrine, we are very excited you are participating. To help you have the best chance at winning, take a moment to either read the doctrine primer on doctrine.af.mil or listen to the What is USAF Doctrine podcast to ensure that your proposed changes are appropriate for doctrine.

    Doctrine links:

    www.doctrine.af.mil (USAF operational doctrine)

    www.jcs.mil/doctrine/ (Joint Doctrine)

    Podcast links:

    Air Force Doctrine Podcasts on Apple

    Air Force Doctrine Podcasts on Spotify

    Air Force Doctrine Podcasts on Amazon

    Submission Guidelines

    • Word Documents Only
    • Simultaneous submissions are acceptable. The LeMay Center wishes to encourage Airmen and Guardians to write. However, please inform us upon submission if your work is being considered for publication elsewhere. If your work is accepted elsewhere, please inform us immediately as you may be ineligible for dual publication and the top prize.
    • We will accept only first-publication articles (previously published articles will not be accepted). Work submitted for academic requirements that is not officially published elsewhere IS acceptable.
    • Provide a brief biographical statement. In addition to your Word attachment please include a brief biographical statement (e.g. “Maj Jones is a an air mobility pilot and currently a student at ACSC.”). Please also provide links to your X (formerly Twitter) handle and your LinkedIn profile, if applicable.
    • You may also need to include any relevant institutional caveats.
    • Authors requiring official review before an article can be published should secure permissions prior to submission.
    • If you create any custom images, figures, or tables for your article, please attach separately the highest possible quality of image for our use. Give credit for any images you do not create.
    • Word Documents Only
    • Simultaneous submissions are acceptable. The LeMay Center wishes to encourage Airmen and Guardians to write. However, please inform us upon submission if your work is being considered for publication elsewhere. If your work is accepted elsewhere, please inform us immediately as you may be ineligible for dual publication and the top prize.
    • We will accept only first-publication articles (previously published articles will not be accepted). Work submitted for academic requirements that is not officially published elsewhere IS acceptable.
    • Provide a brief biographical statement. In addition to your Word attachment please include a brief biographical statement (e.g. “Maj Jones is a an air mobility pilot and currently a student at ACSC.”). Please also provide links to your X (formerly Twitter) handle and your LinkedIn profile, if applicable.
    • You may also need to include any relevant institutional caveats.
    • Authors requiring official review before an article can be published should secure permissions prior to submission.
    • If you create any custom images, figures, or tables for your article, please attach separately the highest possible quality of image for our use. Give credit for any images you do not create.

    The Prizes

    Top essay will be purchased from the author for $1,000.

    The Commander of the LeMay Center, Maj Gen Wright, will coin the top three essay authors.

    Top three authors will be highlighted via Air University social media and AUiX

    All essays of publishing quality will be combined into the following issue of The LeMay Papers (AU Publishing Publication). Top essays will be submitted for publishing in an online journal.

    Key Dates

    26 Feb 2024

    Submissions Open

    5 May 2024

    Last Day to Submit

    This will be the final day you can submit your essay.

    TBD

    Winners Announcement

    Remember to look back and see who won!

    Submit Your Essay

    Inspiring Doctrinal Innovation Essay Submission
    Please provide a link to your X (formerly Twitter) handle if applicable.
    Please provide a link to your LinkedIn handle if applicable.

    Maximum file size: 10MB

    Word Documents Only.

    Maximum file size: 10MB

    Use this field to upload any custom images, figures, or tables for your article. If you need to upload more than one asset, please create a ZIP archive and upload the ZIP here. If your ZIP/asset is greater than 10MB, please upload to a third-party hosting service (Box, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.) and provide the link to the share here. Ensure that your share permissions allow retrieval of the file(s). Please be patient as we review and upload your assets. The speed of this process will be dependent on your network speed and the size of the file(s) you're uploading!
    Use this field to share any custom images, figures, or tables for your article that exceed 10MB. Ensure that your share permissions allow retrieval of the file(s).

    Amplify The Message

    Share with #USAFDoctrine or #IDIEssayContest

    #USAFDoctrine on X (formerly Twitter)/Facebook

    Join the Conversation

    Contacts

    Mr. Joseph (Bill) DeMarco
    joseph.demarco.4@us.af.mil

    Mr. Tony Montelepre
    tony@auix.org

    Mr. Jeremy VanEgmond
    jeremy@auix.org

    Major Nicholas (BADGER) Underwood
    usafdoctrine@us.af.mil