Atlantic Future Forum

The 2019 Atlantic Future Forum (AFF) will take place on board HMS Queen Elizabeth, Thursday 21st November at anchor off Annapolis, Washington D.C., during her deployment to the USA.

The event, a full day conference, brings together the brightest minds and most influential thinkers-from defence and beyond-to strengthen the US-UK special relationship and encourage collaboration between the public and private sector.

The forum will bring together industry, military and government to discuss the issues to be faced in what has come to be known as the ‘fourth industrial revolution’ of AI, cyber technology, robotics and big data.  

Through a series of keynote speeches and panel discussions, the Forum will explore how both private and public sector and US and UK interests can work together to maximise the opportunities – and mitigate the risks – posed by current and future technologies.

It is crucial to retain a competitive edge and to be ready for the challenges of tomorrow.

The future we choose

On the fiftieth anniversary of the iconic moon landing, this panel discussion will explore what future this generation of scientists and policy-makers will choose. As we move through the fourth industrial revolution, how do we ensure technology is harnessed for the benefit, in NASA’s words, of all mankind? What should be our ambitions for the next 10, 20, 100 years and how can the UK and US work together to turn them into reality?

The future of defence

In the face of growing cyber threats and the rapid pace of technological change, it is crucial that the UK and US retain a competitive edge against potential adversaries. This panel will explore what effect emerging technologies will have on the future of warfare, and what our two nations should do to ensure these technologies are harnessed to positive effect.

The future of security

50 years ago, the US and UK collaborated to win the space race between the great powers. Today, great power competition is returning. And at the same time, new challenges are being posed by non-state actors like terrorist groups. In this session, we will explore how terrorist groups and hostile states will try to use new technologies to threaten our security, and ask how we can fight back.

The future of space

We are living through a new age of space exploration, with public and private sectors actors – as well as a plethora of different nation states – stretching the bounds of space technology like never before. How can the UK and US work together to stay ahead of the competition when it comes to space technology? What are the opportunities and threats ahead?

Our Strategic Partners

Atlantic Future Forum 2018

The inaugural Atlantic Future Forum was held on 22 October 2018 in New York Harbour.

It was a historic event which celebrated HMS Queen Elizabeth’s maiden voyage across the Atlantic, and the special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom.

Addressed by senior members of the British and US Governments, it was a rare opportunity for the UK and US military, business leaders, innovators and tech entrepreneurs to come together with political leaders and policy makers from both sides of the Atlantic.

The forum explored the opportunities and threats presented by developments in cyber technology and the world of AI with addresses from experts including Michael Chertoff, the second United States Secretary of Homeland Security, Dr Ian Levy, the Technical Director of the UK National Cyber Security Centre, Rear Admiral David J Hahn, the Chief of Naval Research, and Teresa Carlson, the Vice President of Amazon Web Services.

The delegates at the forum represented companies at the cutting edge of technology, including Amazon Web Services, BP, BlackRock, Lockheed Martin and BAE Systems. Together they explored the opportunities and threats presented by developments in the cyber world, and the role the public and private sector could jointly play in shaping them.

Delegates came away from the forum with a renewed sense of excitement about what can be accomplished when these two nations work together, and the potential AI has to change the world for the better.