NATO's Strategic Warfare Development Command

Allied Command Transformation to Showcase Wargaming Expertise at Wargaming Initiative for NATO 2023

June 23, 2023

From June 26-28, 2023, Allied Command Transformation will co-lead the Wargaming Initiative for NATO 2023, deepening the wargaming knowledge of senior NATO military and civilian officials.

Allied Command Transformation is developing its Audacious Wargaming Capability as part of its effort to better understand the challenges facing the Alliance’s Military Instrument of Power and out-excel potential adversaries through leadership development. It also seeks to enhance engagement and cooperation with stakeholders to refine NATO’s understanding and use of wargaming to enable it to remain at the forefront of warfare development. One aspect of these efforts is the Wargaming Initiative for NATO, which seeks to further the Alliance’s wargaming capabilities and foster a wargaming culture across the Alliance.

Allied Command Transformation is co-leading the Wargaming Initiative for NATO 2023, better known as WIN 2023, from June 26-28, 2023 in Rome, Italy. Over the course of this three-day event, the Command’s Wargaming and Experimentation Branch will be working alongside Italy, France, and Germany to expose senior NATO military and civilian officials to future wargaming practices and technologies. In line with the theme of ‘Harnessing the Power and Potential of Wargaming,’ WIN 2023 seeks to enable NATO’s competitive edge into the future by reinforcing analytical rigor at all levels of decision-making and providing the opportunity to explore threats in a safe-to-fail environment. WIN 2023 has over 300 participants from across the Alliance, with participation from NATO, Allies, academia, and industry.

Speaking on the importance of WIN 2023 to the development of NATO’s wargaming capabilities, Colonel Nicholas Waldron, Head of the Experimentation and Wargaming Branch, said,

“WIN 23 is the second iteration of ACT’s collaboration with nations to build a culture and awareness of Wargaming practice throughout the Alliance. What began as a grassroots effort to broaden the exposure to wargaming has grown this year into an event that maintains the spirit of that grassroots effort, but also exposes senior NATO leaders to the art of the possible for future wargaming practices and technologies. As such, we have a packed schedule focused on Harnessing the Power and Potential of Wargaming as a practice, with an exposure to technologies that can augment our ability to do just that.”

This year’s Wargaming Initiative for NATO features plenary sessions about the use of wargaming to enhance the Alliance’s strategic advantage as well as the use of wargaming to develop better decision-makers in an era of accelerated decision-making. WIN 2023 will also provide participants the opportunity to experience the benefits of wargaming first-hand during wargaming sessions and to interact with the latest wargaming solutions, topics, and capabilities from NATO, academia, and industry.

The Wargaming Initiative for NATO began in 2022 as a bilateral initiative between France and Italy, supported by the Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, General Philippe Lavigne. It has since evolved into a continuum of events, with Allied Command Transformation co-hosting NATO’s first practitioner-level wargaming conference at King’s College London in May, and conducting WIN 2023 in Rome. The Wargaming Initiative for NATO has recently become an annual event, with planning currently ongoing for the next iterations in 2024 and 2025.