Connections Oz will occur in 2020.
We have booked space at the Australian Defence College (Canberra) for 7-9 December.
However, we are currently operating under physical distancing rules and it seems unlikely this will change. This will limit the number of attendees who can physically attend the conference. We are investigating options to include web based sessions.
This is potentially an opportunity to include a wider variety of attendees, including some from overseas. If you have any proposals for what to include, please get in touch.
In the meantime I would like to draw your attention to ‘Connections Global’ 10-14 August. This is an entirely online conference. See their website https://connections-wargaming.com/connections-2020/ for program and registration details. This is a great opportunity to link up with our international colleagues.
Additionally, PaxSims and other groups have developed a set of principles to foster diversity and inclusion https://paxsims.wordpress.com/derby-house-principles/. These principles are gaining widespread endorsement from wargaming and related groups. I encourage our readers to reflect on these principles and consider how they might enact them so that the Connections Oz community embodies them. We are planning a session at the conference to explore issues of inclusion and diversity and welcome your input. If you would like to comment on this, please use the ‘Diversity’ tab on the top menu bar.
Hi all, apologies, but we have had a snag with our initial venue plans. The good news is that the Australian Defence College has agreed to host us this year, but the bad news is this requires a date change. The conference has been moved to Monday 9 December to Wednesday 11 December.
Sorry about any inconvenience, but we felt this was better than cancelling all together.
Please see the registration page for registration details or go straight to Eventbrite to register. https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/connections-oz-2019-tickets-78914777223.
A rough program has been posted on the program page and details will be added over the next few days.
Please note that although the conference is unclassified, all non-defence attendees must sign in at the front gate and collect a visitor pass and they must be escorted while attending the conference. For this reason we ask you to register individually as we must provide a list of names to security.
The Modelling and Simulation Society of Australia and New Zealand are holding their conference, MODSIM , in Canberra the previous week, so we hope some people might decide to attend both. Please stay tuned for more details.
Papers from the 2018 Connections Oz conference have been archived here.
Great news. Professor Robert Burks from the US Naval Postgraduate School has agreed to deliver an opening keynote at this years conference. Rob is visiting to attend the national conference for the Australian Society of Operations Research and has been able to extend the visit to attend our conference again this year.
Please see the program page for emerging details of the other activities.
My apology for taking so long to announce a date for Connections Oz 2018. Moving the conference interstate proved far more difficult than I had imagined. After plan A and B both failed (and perhaps some other letters too) Mariana has come to the rescue and saved the day.
This year’s conference will be held 10-12 December in the Hatchery at the University of Technology Sydney. More details will follow soon.
Please consider this a call for papers and presentations and feel free to distribute the information amongst the relevant networks.
Click on “Registrations” on the menu at the top of the page to go to the eventbrite registration page. The conference is again free. Thanks very much to the generosity of UTS for allowing us to use their space.
Connections Oz is over for another year. Thanks to everyone who attended and for the enthusiastic participation. Thanks in particular to our two international visitors and keynote Jeff Appleget and Rob Burks from the US Naval Postgraduate School and to our second keynote speaker Dr Fred Bowden from DST Group.
Thanks also to the University of Melbourne and the team at the School of Computing and Information Systems for hosting us again.
I have archived the program here http://www.kriegspiel.com.au/connections/2017/Connections2017.html and put links to the slide decks that I have so far received.
Stay tuned for details about next year.
On the positive side:
three days seems about right
best to keep a mix of lectures and activities
it is great to have international participation
the game night and social activities are important
Room for improvement:
the goals/ mission/ identity of the group are not clear
add an activity on designing a game
broaden the connection to non-defence industries
involve military history academics
include some relevant side visits (as extra activities for later in the week)
get the program out much earlier
consider an icebreaker opening activity – such as a large game
Please post some further comments.
Great news! Dr Jeff Appleget, Senior Lecturer from the Operations Research Department at the US Naval Postgraduate School, will be attending Connections Oz this year, maintaining our unbroken record of international guest speakers. Jeff has a distinguished career in modelling, simulation and wargaming and teaches a number of related subjects at NPS. We look forward to his involvement in the conference and the opportunity to learn from his experiences.
The Connections Oz Wargame conference is an opportunity for professional wargamers to get together and share knowledge to improve the art and science of wargaming. It is also an opportunity for those new to the discipline to get some first hand experience playing and designing games and scenarios.
Although the title says “wargame” it is not limited to military applications. Business, emergency services and many other disciplines use games and simulation for planning, learning and experimentation.
This year’s conference will run over 3 days from Monday 11 Dec to Wednesday 13 Dec at the University of Melbourne. Exact times are yet to be confirmed, but expect a 10AM start on the Monday and a 4PM end on the Wednesday for those needing to plan travel.
The venue is level 2 in the “Old Metallurgy” building (Link). Thanks very much to staff at the University who have arranged the facilities for us. Register here.
Please forward this information to your colleagues and start planning some presentations or workshops. If anyone has a specific request for a workshop, something you may have heard about or would like to try, get in touch with us and we will see if we can arrange it.
Our plan is to run as many interactive activities as we can. There will be some introductory workshops, the opportunity to participate in a variety of game methods, and some game design activities.
Once again, registration will be free this year (with a gold coin donation for coffee/ tea etc). Sadly, this may be the last time we can run it at no cost, so get in while you can!
The conference is unclassified.
The 2016 conference has concluded. While the number of attendees was lower than past years, I believe we can call it a success.
Thanks to all those who presented, attended and participated in the activities with such enthusiasm. Slide decks etc will be available on the Resources page shortly. Please comment on the feedback below.
Looking forward to 2017.
We held a short feedback session and considered the following points:
Mix of activities and presentations
Breadth of topics/ guests/ participants
Small group size – approximately 20
Exposure to new techniques
Relaxed social evening
Comfortable for novices to attend
Things to improve
Connect with other industries
Invite game designers – for insights into game design
Game design workshop
Tighter schedule – build in explicit time for Q&A
Increase to 3 days
Consider charging a fee – encourage commitment and allow for some funds for marketing etc
Consider alternate locations – interstate?
The conference program now has its own web page. See the menu at the top of this page for the link.
Based on feedback from 2015, Mariana proposed a program outline, and this is the basis of this year’s suggested program. We need proposals from you, the delegates, for content: either what you would like to be included, or what you would be prepared to present yourself. If there are sufficient numbers, we will run the workshop sessions in parallel, and repeat them as needed.
Day 1, Monday 5 Dec
Start at 1000
Session 1: Introduction to Wargaming
Sessions 2, 3 & 4: Interactive Workshops. Suggested topics: games for planners, games for operational leaders, designing games.
End at 1800
Dinner and games night 1900
Day 2, Tuesday 6 Dec
Start at 0900
Session 1 Keynote Address
Session 2:The Business Case for Wargaming
Session 3: Game Design Workshop
Session 4: Debrief and wrap up.
End at 1700
Doug McDonell building, University of Melbourne
Register at https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/connections-oz-2016-tickets-27066459509