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CfP 2024 Annual Conference | Playing War: Simulations, Games, Exercises, and the Representations of Military Force and Violence

We invited proposals for our 2024 annual conference, which will be held on 27–29 November 2024 in Regensburg in collaboration with the Bundeswehr Center of Military History and Social Sciences (ZMSBw). Get your proposals in by 6 May 2024.

The organizing team of the 2024 ScienceCampus annual conference – Kerrin Langer (ZMSBw),  Jon-Wyatt Matlack (UR/IOS), Frank Reichherzer (ZMSBw) and Juliane Tomann (UR) – welcomes paper and panel proposals for the 2024 annual conference, organized in collaboration with the Bundeswehr Center of Military History and Social Sciences (ZMSBw) in Potsdam. The conference takes place in Regensburg on 27–29 November 2024. The CfP is open until 6 May 2024. Send your submissions to info@europeamerica.de

Find the full Call for Papers here

CfP Summary

Military organizations are unique in that their design, doctrine, training, and equipment are all based on an exception: warfighting. Especially in uncertain times, the military seeks to gain certainty of action through speculation. The military apparatus is constantly searching for ways to deal with unknowns and contingency. The largest NATO maneuvers since the end of the Cold War in response to Russia's war in Ukraine, wargaming from hybrid attacks to full-scale warfare scenarios, mock invasion of Taiwan conducted by the Chinese People's Liberation Army are just recent examples. In such contexts, the use of force and military violence must be imagined, represented, displayed, performed, – played. Using the concept of ‘play’ for this conference, we seek to decode how military force and violence functions within imaginatively created environments within the military and beyond.

As primers, we pose the following questions:

  1. (military) Operations: What understanding of warfighting etc. form play- and rulebooks? How does the state perform its “enemy”? What impact does playing war have on ‘real’ conflicts and operations?
  2. Practice: How are war games played? What continuities and changes can be observed in the practices of playing war games? How do war games represent force and violence, and what practices of representation are evident in their portrayal?
  3. Environment: Under what conditions is war played? What are the infrastructures? What could be said about the material culture of playing war?
  4. Design: How are conflict, war, and combat modeled? What informs these processes? What about “playing peace”?
  5. Knowledge: How and what kind of knowledge shapes play? How and what kind of games produce knowledge?
  6. Technology: How does technology enable specific forms of wargaming? What is the significance of (perhaps future) military technology?

Authors are invited to submit abstracts of original papers until 6 Mai 2024 via email to info@europeamerica.de. Submissions must not exceed 500 words. Please add name, affiliation, and a short (one page max.) CV to your proposal.

If you want to organize a panel (3 slots max. for a two-hour panel), extend your submission for each author under the mentioned conditions and a short idea of the Panel.