Archive for the 'Academia' Category

Tweeting Exploring the Frontiers of Air Power Research Workshop

Today is the first day of the Air Power Workshop at the Centre for War Studies at the University of Birmingham. This is an important and exciting event that seeks to explore future avenues of research in the field of Air Power Studies.

Rather than write a report on the two days activities I am tweeting some key points that are raised during the course of the workshop. You can follow these tweets by following the hash tag #airpowerresearch. Hopefully this works.


Air Power Studies Debate Series

A new series of Air Power Studies Debates are being organised by the Air Power Studies Division of King’s College London.

The inaugural debate will be on the motion:

‘Autonomous weapons and morality in war are incompatible’

Professor Noel Sharkey, University of Sheffield

(For the motion)

Professor Tony Gillespie, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory

(Against the motion)

The debate will be held in the Edmund J Safra Lecture Theatre, Kings College London, Strand Campus, London on Thursday 14 April 2011

1845 Complementary refreshments in “Chapters”

1930 Lecture Theatre (doors open 1915)


Please confirm your intent to attend by contacting:

Ms Debra Aitkenhead

Telephone: +44 (0) 1400 266334

DFTS: 95751 6334

Fax: +44 (0) 1400 266265


CFP – Air Power and Global Operations: 9/11 and Beyond

United States Air Force Historical Foundation


United States Air Force Historical Studies Office

Call for Papers

The Air Force Historical Foundation and the U.S. Air Force Historical Studies Office invite scholars, analysts, observers, and participants to submit proposals for papers to be presented at the 2011 symposium, “Air Power and Global Operations: 9/11 and Beyond,” which will be held November 17–18, 2011, in the Washington, D.C. area.

In recognition of the tenth anniversary of the events of September 11, 2001, this 1-1/2 day symposium will feature prominent U.S. military and civilian leaders, national security experts, and Air Force historians. Papers will consider topics of leadership, technology, doctrine, planning, operations, and roles and missions within the general theme of air power in the post-9/11 world:

9/11 and Operation Noble Eagle, including leadership and information management, interagency communication and coordination, evolution and expansion of the air defense mission, and budgetary impact on day-to-day operations.

The Global War on Terror and Operation Enduring Freedom, including increased heightened operational tempo, coalition interoperability, air mobility, special operations, and provincial reconstruction teams.

Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn, including counterinsurgency, joint aspects of major combat operations, nation-building, and air mobility.

New Operational Paradigms and Innovations, including the impact of precision weapons, ISR, command and control systems, satellite and communications systems, cyber warfare, and global humanitarian missions.

Time constraints may limit the opportunity to present some papers in person at the symposium. The Air Force History and Museums Program plans to publish an edited volume based on the proceedings. Thus, contributors unable to present papers will be able to share their work in the published symposium proceedings.

The conference sponsors are unable to provide transportation, food, or lodging for this symposium.

To be considered for the symposium, submit an abstract of approximately 250 words and a one-page curriculum vitae or résumé to by May 1, 2011.

Please type “2011 Symposium” as the subject of the email. We plan to respond to proposals by mid-June. The final papers will be due by October 2, 2011.

N.B. This has been posted on behalf of the organisers.

Birmingham Branch of the Historical Association

Next weeks seminar at the Birmingham Branch of the Historical Association is as follows:

Air Commodore (ret’d) Dr. Peter Gray, Senior Air Power Research Fellow, University of Birmingham

‘Churchill and the Bombing of Dresden 1945′

This event will be on 15 February. All lectures 6pm Tuesdays at The Open University, 66 High Street, Harborne, Birmingham B17 9NB.

Transformation and Innovation in the British Military from 1642 to 1945

I have been working on this event with a couple of fellow PhD student for the past few months. We are now in a position to start advertising it. As you can see there are a f ew air power related papers being delivered on the day…Keep an eye on the blog for similar events. The main web page for the event is here.

Transformation and Innovation in the British Military from 1642 to 1945

A Symposium for Postgraduate and Early Career Historians

13 April 2011

This symposium, organised by the Centres for First and Second World War Studies at the University of Birmingham, intends to give postgraduate and early career historians the opportunity to examine the process of transformation and innovation in the British military as recent literature on the subject has highlighted a need to evaluate the process from 1642 to 1945. The symposium will be held at the Edgbaston campus of the University of Birmingham.

The symposium will also give delegates the opportunity to present aspects of their research to a wider audience and engage with the academic community in military history. The symposium programme is attached;  it includes eighteen papers on aspects of transformation and innovation in the British military from the early modern period to the  early twentieth century and from a range of perspectives. Professor John Buckley, Chair of Military History at the University of Wolverhampton, will deliver the keynote lecture. Professor Gary Sheffield, Chair of War Studies at the University of Birmingham, will deliver the symposium’s closing address.

The symposium fee, which includes tea & coffee and lunch on the day, is £10 for postgraduate students and Friends/Members of the Centres for First and Second World War Studies and £20 for other interested parties.

If you wish to attend the symposium please print out and return the Symposium Booking Form below and send it by Monday 4 April to:

Ross Mahoney

C/O School of History and Cultures

College of Arts and Law

University of Birmingham



B15 2TT

For informal enquiries please email us at or post a comment below.

Provisional Conference Programme:

8:45 – Registration

9:15 – Introduction and Welcome – Ross Mahoney, Stuart Mitchell and Michael LoCicero

9:30 – Panel 1: Transformation and Innovation in the Early Modern Era, 1642-1815

Chair: Victoria Henshaw (University of Birmingham)

Sara Regnier-Mckeller (University of Essex) – Honour and Manhood in the Armies of the British Civil Wars

Britt Zerbe (University of Exeter) – Amphibious Brotherhood: 1664 or 1755? What Foundation and Establishment mean to Marine Identity

11:00 – Tea

11:15 – Panel 2A: Transformation and Innovation in the 19th Century

Chair: Aimée Fox (University of Birmingham)

Peter Randall (University of Reading) – The Influence of the Napoleonic Wars upon the British Military, 1815-1854

Andrew Duncan (University of Birmingham) – British Army Medicine, 1854-1914 (Title TBC)

Edward Gosling (University of Plymouth) – The Cardwell-Childers Reforms, 1868-1881

11:15 – Panel 2B: Transformation and Innovation at the Fin de Siècle

Chair: Michael LoCicero (University of Birmingham)

Dr Spencer Jones (University of Wolverhampton) – Countdown to the ‘Mad Minute’: The Reform of British Musketry, 1899-1914

Dr Peter Grant (Cass Business School, City University) – Learning to Manage the Army: The Army Administration Course at the London School of Economics

Martin Gibson (University of Glasgow) – The Royal Navy’s Conversion from Coal to Oil, 1900-1914

12:45 – Lunch

13:30 – Keynote Address by Professor John Buckley, Chair of Military History, University of Wolverhampton

14:30 – Panel 3A: Transformation and Innovation in the First World War

Chair: Stuart Mitchell (University of Birmingham)

Paul Harris (King’s College London) – Soldier Banker: Lieutenant-General Sir Herbert Lawrence as the BEF’s Chief of Staff in 1918

Simon Justice (University of Birmingham) – Vanishing Battalions: The Reorganisation of British Infantry prior to, and as a result of, the German Spring Offensives of 1918

Dr Jonathan Boff (King’s College London) – Innovation and Victory: The British Army during the Hundred Days Campaign, 1918

14:30 – Panel 3B: Transformation and Innovation in the Second World War

Chair: James Pugh (University of Birmingham)

Neal Dando (University of Plymouth) – From ‘Jock Column’ to Armoured Column: Transformation and Change in British and Commonwealth Unit Tactics in the Western Desert, January 1941 to November 1942

Sarah McCook (University of Durham) – Wartime Communications: British Dispatch Riders and the need for reliable communications during the Second World War

Dr Matthew Ford (University of Hull) – Learning the Lessons of Battle: Organisational Learning, Small Unit Tactics and the Problems with the Force Transformation Literature

16.00 – Coffee

16:15 – Panel 4: Transformation and Innovation in the Third Dimension

Chair: Ross Mahoney (University of Birmingham)

James Pugh (University of Birmingham) – Oil and Water: Military and Naval approaches to Air Power Doctrine and Technological Innovation, 1911-1914

John Alexander (University of Birmingham) – Transformation and Innovation in British Air Defence, 1922-1936

Richard Hammond (University of Exeter) – British Aero-Naval Co-Operation in the Mediterranean and the Formation of RAF No. 201 (Naval Co-Operation) Group

17:45 Closing Address by Professor Gary Sheffield, Chair of War Studies, University of Birmingham

Precis of the Air Power Symposium

After a successful symposium a couple of weeks back, we are hoping to post up some posts by the contributors based on the papers that were delivered.

The first will be a paper by Ian Shields, who is completing his PhD at the University of Cambridge. His paper was entitled ‘What does Time and Space Mean for the Airman?’

Watch this space to see what exciting research is ongoing in Air Power Studies in the UK.

Air Power Studies Postgraduate Symposium at the University of Birmingham

As previously mentioned here are the deatils for the forthcoming Air Power Postgraduate Symposium that is being held at the University of Birmingham on 23 September.

Air Power Studies

Thursday 23rd September 2010

Air Power Postgraduate Research Symposium

Lecture Room 8, Third Floor, Arts Building, University of Birmingham

An informal exploration of air power research topics and issues.


0930 Coffee and Registration

1000 Welcome and Introduction by Air Commodore (Ret’d) Dr Peter Gray (Director of Air Power Studies)

1005 A Recent Graduate’s perspective Air Commodore Neville Parton PhD

Panel 1

1030-1050 Ross Mahoney – The Leadership Effectiveness of Air Chief Marshal Sir Trafford Leigh-Mallory

1050-1110 Peter Dye – Air Power and Logistics in the First World War

1110-1130 James Pugh – Control of the Air

1130 Coffee – Foyer on Third Floor – Lecture Room 8

Panel 2

1150-1210 Andy Walters – Air Power and COIN

1210-1230 Tom Withington – Title (TBC)

1300 Lunch

1345 The External Examiner’s Perspective by Professor Gary Sheffield with Air Power input from Dr Christina Goulter of the  JSCSC, KCL

Panel 3

1415-1435 Kenny Fuchter – China (TBC)

1435-1455 Clive Richards – The Air Ministry 1932 – 1949

1455-1515 Peter Preston-Hough – Air Superiority over Burma 1941-1945

1515 Tea

1530 What the Air Historical Branch can do for you by Seb Cox, Head of the Air Historical Branch, MoD

Panel 4

1600-1620 Ian Shields – tbc

1620-1640 John Alexander – The RAF in Hashemite Iraq

1645 Wash-up and discussion by Proffessor Gary Sheffield

1700 Close

Please contact Mrs Carolyn Sweet, Secretary of the Centre for First World War Studies, to confirm attendance. Tel.: 0121 414 3983 e-mail: Directions and downloadable maps are also available from the University of Birmingham Web Site.

Any questions please post here.


Welcome to The Aerodrome, the unofficial blog of the Air Power Studies students at the University of Birmingham.

Please note all opinions expressed are those of the contributors and should not be taken to be those of the University of Birmingham, the Ministry of Defence or any other organisation or body.

Non-students will from time to time contribute to this blog.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about either this blog or about studying Air Power at the University of Birmingham please email us at The Aerodrome

The Aerodrome Forum

As an adjunct to this blog we have set up an Air Power Forum for students and academics working in the field of Air Power Studies.

You can find the forum here.

If you have any questions please Email us.

You can also find an Air Power Studies networking group on LinkedIn

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