The Current Strategy Forum has its origins in the Round Table Discussions first held at the Naval War College in May 1949. Their purpose was to bring together a small number of prominent civilian and military guests to discuss future U.S. strategy with senior officers attending the Naval War College.
In 1951 Vice Admiral Richard L. Conolly, President of the Naval War College, gained Secretary of the Navy sponsorship of this annual event under the title Global Strategy Discussions. The program was expanded to include a broader cross-section of America’s civilian leadership and to encourage a free and open exchange of views on major national and international issues.
In 1973 the title was changed to Current Strategy Forum (CSF) and the program focus narrowed to examination of one issue of strategic national importance each year. The Current Strategy Forum has thus evolved, despite shifts in title and scope, in consonance with the original objective of providing a forum for the open exchange of viewpoints on important national issues.
Each Forum focuses on one issue of strategic national importance. Distinguished speakers examine various facets of the theme in a series of addresses and panel discussions, followed by question and answer sessions. All plenary sessions are convened in Spruance Auditorium. During the forum, attendees break into informal classroom seminars chaired by faculty moderators, in which guests and students have the opportunity to discuss topics of current strategic concern. Seminar discussions add an interesting dimension to the Forum and allow all participants to develop additional perspective on the theme.