Updated May 19, 2011

  • Day 1
  • Day 2

Thursday, April 14

6:45 – 8:00 AM:  Conference Registration and Informal Reception

8:00 – 8:15 AM:  Conference Welcome and Introduction

Dr. Robert L. Pfaltzgraff, Jr., President, IFPA, and Shelby Cullom Davis Professor of International Security Studies, The Fletcher School, Tufts University

8:15 – 8:45 AM:  Opening Keynote Address

9:00 – 10:00 AM:  Morning Keynote Address

10:00 AM – 12:00 Noon

Session 1

The 21st-Century Security Setting: Identifying the Demand

The geostrategic environment has changed dramatically in the last two decades, increasing the importance of the global commons and shifting strategic focus to the urbanized, littoral regions of the world. Rising states, non-state actors, the proliferation of information technologies and precision weapons, the prevalence of hybrid tactics, the effects of globalization, and the reduction of forward-based U.S. forces all combine to create a complex and uncertain future.  Given that uncertainty, it is unlikely that the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) will get its force structure 100% right. It cannot afford, however, to be too far wrong. Consequently, it must build a force that possesses the flexibility, adaptability, and versatility to meet the unique challenges each Geographic Combatant Command (GCC) will confront. This session is designed to examine regional challenges and future demand for the Marine Corps.

Issue areas for presentations:

  • Identifying the most pressing regional demands and likely regional crises
  • The implications of demographic and urbanization trends for littoral operations and expeditionary forces
  • The impact of anti-access/area-denial weapons on forward engagement, crisis response, and power projection operations
  • The  challenges within the cyber domain and how they will effect forward engagement, crisis response, and power projection
  • The requisite military capabilities to complement the other military services, the GCCs, government agencies, and non-governmental organizations
  • Leveraging the expeditionary readiness of USMC forces optimized for crisis response to engage with an expanding set of partners and to assure access

Moderator: Dr. Robert L. Pfaltzgraff, Jr.

Session questions and answers: Transcript

Panel members:

12:15 – 1:45 PM:  Luncheon and Address  

Representative Todd Akin, Chairman, Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, House Armed Services Committee || Transcript
Introduced by Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis , Executive Vice-President, IFPA

2:00 – 3:45 PM

Session 2

Meeting the Demand: Promoting Partnerships for Engagement

This session is designed to examine the changing nature of operations and its emphasis on developing joint, interagency, allied/partner, inter-governmental and non-governmental relationships. The goal is to identify key partnerships that can facilitate access and meet the demands highlighted in the opening session. The Marine Corps has identified the need to augment partnerships with the GCCs, Services, and civilian policy-makers in order to improve responsiveness and better meet projected demand.  As such, it seeks to answer questions of where and how Marine Corps units can work more closely with partners, and in support of GCC planning. If basing and access become problematic, what options exist for overcoming these constraints, and are there new operational concepts that can support GCC and Marine Corps contingency access?  How can the Marine Corps better exploit civil support and engagement activities to assure access and partner support when and where needed? 

Issue areas for presentations:

  • Overcoming basing constraints on forward access by means of new concepts – such as the “lily pad” concept, Fleet Stations, and Alert Contingency Marine Air-Ground Task Forces – for supporting and implementing operations
  • Developing alternative means to increase forward engagement, including through deployments on diverse platforms
  • Building partner capacities with traditional and non-traditional partners and allies across domains and in key regional theaters
  • Developing specialized, engagement capabilities to improve civil-military coordination and promote USMC regionalization, including regionalization of major headquarters, which among other benefits will improve cultural and regional knowledge/understanding
  • Designing new operational concepts for littoral operations and for countering irregular threats based on the “small wars” legacy and on ideas for employing “soft” power to shape and influence decisions in partner and potential adversarial states
  • Identifying areas where the Marines can have their greatest impact, especially along the littorals

Moderator: Dr. Nadia Schadlow, Senior Program Officer, Smith Richardson Foundation

Session questions and answers: Transcript

Panel members:

3:45 – 4:00 PM: Break

4:00 – 6:00 PM

Session 3

Meeting the Demand: Responding to Crisis and Applying Force

Opening session speaker: the Honorable Robert O. Work, Under Secretary of the Navy || Transcript
Introduced by Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis

This session will address issues related to overcoming challenges to access, responding to crises, and projecting power. Panelists will consider essential Marine Corps and joint capabilities for conducting a spectrum of operations from humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to non-combatant evacuations, counter-terrorism and counter-proliferation missions, and forcible entry operations. 

Issue areas for presentations:

  • Developing crisis response capabilities and tailored crisis response force packages 
  • Expediting crisis response by sea-basing, enhancements to the Maritime Pre-positioning Force, and tethering to forward augmentation modules and forward operating sites
  • Conducting amphibious operations and joint and multinational operations in permissive, uncertain, and hostile environments   
  • Preparing for tailored, distributed, “net-centric” operations and cyber warfare
  • Constraints on forward basing and on strategic and operational lift capacity, and the impact of both on maintaining/gaining access, building partnerships, and responding to crises

Moderator: Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis

Session questions and answers: Transcript

Panel members:

  • Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert, USN, Vice Chief of Naval Operations

end of Day 1  |  go to Day 2

Friday, April 15

8:00 – 9:00 AM: Conference Registration and Informal Reception  

9:00 – 10:00 AM: Opening Keynote Address  

Gen James L. Jones, USMC (Ret.), former U.S. National Security Advisor, former Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR), and former Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps || Transcript
Introduced by Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis

10:00 AM – 12:00 Noon 

Session 4

Supporting and Enabling the Force to Meet Emerging and Future Challenges

This session will feature an overview of the results of the USMC Force Structure Review to include discussion of the capabilities, capacities, requirements, relationships, and interdependencies necessary for an expeditionary force in readiness. Given that there will be continuing demands for adaptable forces to respond to increasingly complex needs, such forces must be sufficiently light and agile to deploy and employ rapidly but robust enough to carry the day. Panel members will discuss their perspective on the USMC’s future direction including factors to consider in designing the Marine Corps as a middleweight force. 

Issue areas for presentations:

  • The resources and programs, including the naval and joint interdependencies, required to support the Marine Corps
  • The new concepts, networks, and partnerships the Marine Corps will need to develop
  • The capabilities, capacities, and global posture needed to engage, respond, and project power
  • Technology innovations required in mission critical areas
  • Reconciling budget constraints with modernization needs
  • Areas where the Marine Corps can accept risk

Moderator: Dr. Charles M. Perry, Vice President and Director of Studies, IFPA

Session questions and answers: Transcript

Panel members:

  • Mr. Ron O'Rourke, Senior Analyst for Maritime Forces, Congressional Research Service

12:15 – 1:45 PM: Luncheon and Address

General James F. Amos, USMC Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps || Transcript || Slides
Introduced by Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis

2:00 – 4:15 PM    

Session 5

Regional Challenges and Opportunities 

From the operational perspectives of the GCCs, this session will examine priorities, challenges, and opportunities, with particular emphasis on engagement, access, crisis prevention, conflict management, and support to civil authorities. Senior military leaders will discuss future demands for engagement, crisis response, power projection and assuring access.  Panelists will address the impact of these issues on the development of integrated priority lists and capability packages and the implications for Marine Corps component commanders.  A goal of this session is to understand how best to integrate littoral warfare considerations more fully into joint and GCC planning.

Issue areas for presentations:

  • Addressing access challenges and GCC requirements for conducting engage and respond operations and the ramifications for an expeditionary force in readiness
  • Identifying capability gaps and how the Marines Corps can best meet GCC needs
  • GCC perspectives on the critical skills required in tomorrow’s Marine Corps
  • Developing the most effective approach for the Marine Corps to work with the functional commands (e.g., U.S. Special Operations Command), the other Services, and the broader interagency community to achieve U.S. strategic objectives

Moderator: Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis

Session questions and answers: Transcript

Panel members:

4:15 – 4:30 PM: Closing Remarks

General James F. Amos, USMC
Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis