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Call For Papers, RAF Museum Conference 2024

Published on: 13 March 2024

Organiser: Royal Air Force Museum

Conference: Understanding the Future of Air Power – Air Forces since 1980 and Beyond

Place and Date: Royal Air Force Museum London, Thursday 5 – Friday 6 September 2024.

Application deadline: 28 April 2024.

Submission Type: Abstract, plus a biography and talk title.

Form of Submission: Maximum 300 words in English. Biographies should be no more than 200 words.

Applications to be sent to: megan.kelleher@rafmuseum.org

Hosted at the Royal Air Force Museum’s London site, this two-day conference will explore the complex ways in which air forces have evolved and transformed since the late twentieth century, and what the future of air power may look like. The conference will be interdisciplinary and will host scholars working on topics that relate to air forces, their personnel and technologies, the economies and societies with which they interact, the conflicts in which they have engaged, and the global and international context with which they are connected. Moreover, the conference will explore the legacies of the time period through the lens of the media produced to tell its story, both contemporary to the time period and as part of commemorative works.

Chinook Helicopter Bravo November in flight

The conference will be available to attend in-person, with recordings of the talks and panels being live-streamed and recorded online via Crowdcast.

The research presented will provide new evidence and insights on the development of air forces, speaking to the changes and continuity experienced since 1980. The research presented will help inform the Museum’s new exhibition on the recent development of British air power.

We would welcome papers on a variety of topics which examine topics that include, but are not limited to, the following questions:

  • What were the causes of the changes experienced by the Royal Air Force since 1980?
  • How has the field of air power evolved as a consequence of these developments?
  • What challenges have been faced by air forces facing reductions in expenditure?
  • What lessons from earlier periods help to inform the changes that the RAF experienced during this period?
  • How do changes in society create pressures for air forces, particularly in recruitment, retention and operations?
  • What does the future of air power and the Royal Air Force look like?

Two Panavia Tornado Jets of to the Gulf

If you are interested in delivering a paper, or proposing a discussion panel, please send a lecture title, abstract and biography to the Museum’s Historian and Academic Access Manager, Dr Megan Kelleher megan.kelleher@rafmuseum.org by Sunday 28 April 2024.

We would particularly welcome papers from Masters and Doctoral Researchers, in addition to Early Career Researchers. There are a limited number of bursaries for those requiring financial support to present at the conference; please speak to Dr Megan Kelleher for more details.

Off on a Humanitarian Mission

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