In the face of Russian aggression and Chinese military modernization, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs has assessed that the "potential for significant international conflict is increasing." The 2022 National Defense Strategy directs the services to "act urgently to sustain and strengthen deterrence." Whether gray zone operations or strategic competition, naval forces are tied to every aspect of deterrence -- and to operations should deterrence fail. Faced with this deteriorating environment, this year's Naval Intelligence Essay Contest challenges you to think about how naval intelligence supports naval power across the Sea Services. Potential themes include:
- How can naval intelligence support integrated deterrence?
- How can naval intelligence rebuild a masterful knowledge of the adversary that characterized its work during the Cold War?
- The Marine Corps' Force Design 2030 imagines lethal, survivable stand-in forces intimately tied to forces afloat. How does this new approach impact naval intelligence -- both supporting its operations and leveraging its potential?
- What lessons does the current conflict in Ukraine offer naval intelligence?
- Open to all contributors -- active-duty, military, reservists, veterans, and civilians.
- Essays must be no more than 2,500 words, excluding end notes and sources. Include word count on title page of the essay.
- Essays are judged in the blind. Do not include author name(s) on the title page or within the body of the essay.
- Submit essay as a Word document at www.usni.org/navalintelligence no later than 31 July 2022.
- Essay must be original and not previously published (online or in print) or being considered for publication elsewhere.
First Prize: $5,000
Second Prize: $2,500
Third Prize: $1,500
A panel of expert judges compiled by the U.S. Naval Institute and Naval Intelligence Professionals will evaluate and judge all entries submitted to the contest. Essays will be judged in the blind—i.e., the judging panel will not know the authors of the essays. Since we receive so many submissions (more than 100 per month!), notification of acceptance on one of our platforms can take 4-6 months. We will notify you via email if your essay is selected for a prize or for publication.
Announcement of the Winners
Winners will be recognized at the Naval Intelligence Professionals' Annual Meeting.