USSOCOM Innovation Foundry (IF10) Event

03-05 May 2022

Submissions Closed 27 March 11:59 PM ET


SOFWERX, in collaboration with USSOCOM’s Directorate of Science and Technology (S&T), will host the tenth Innovation Foundry (IF10) Event. S&T Futures seeks to bring together U.S. and International Special Operations Forces (SOF), Industry, Academia, Government, and futurists in an exploration, design thinking, facilitated event to assist USSOCOM in decomposing future scenarios and missions to develop concepts for future SOF operator skillsets and traits in a 2040 timeframe. The theme of IF10 is “Future SOF Teams: Diversity of Skillsets and Traits.”

IF10 participants will explore the impact of future missions, operating environments, and social and technological changes to SOF Operators, the people who are the core of the SOF enterprise.

To ground the discussion, IF10 participants will use a fictional mission scenario that reflects the complex interplays of social, technological, political, and cultural factors as they might play out in 2040 to explore the human dimensions of the challenge, the skillsets and traits needed for SOF operators in 2040 and beyond.

Why You Should Participate
The event will be a compelling opportunity for leading minds in Industry, Academia, Labs, and Government, as well as Subject Matter Experts in Team Performance and Assessment, Training and Education, Social and Behavioral Sciences, and SOF Operations to ideate, collaborate, and develop concepts for the future needs of SOF. USSOCOM has also used Innovation Foundries to build key relationships with local and regional entrepreneurs and technology developers.

Problem Statement
As the world and future missions change, so must SOF. Are the current skillsets and traits SOF recruits and trains for today valuable in 2040? What skillsets and traits will be valuable for SOF operators in 2040 and beyond? The skillsets and traits of future SOF operators will have many facets, each with its advantages to the SOF organization as well as challenges in implementation, organization, training, equipping, educating, assessing, and sustaining. IF10 participants will analyze the impacts of potential force design changes as a result of their recommendations.

“The scenarios were sophisticated and intentionally difficult in order to drive new and creative approaches to the problem sets.” — RDML Rodriguez (NSWC Deputy), IF3

Event Timeline
Completed Phase 1 – 03 March 2022 to 27 March 2022 Requests to Attend Open: Team Performance and Assessment, Training and Education, Social and Behavioral Sciences Subject Matter Experts, futurists and visionaries from Industry, Academia, and National Labs request to attend the IF10 Event by submitting a CV below NLT 27 March.

Completed Phase 2 – 28 March 2022 to 08 April 2022 SME Review: The S&T Directorate Future’s Team will review SME requests to attend and notify SOFWERX of invited participants. SOFWERX will notify participants of their attendance status o/a 11 April. 

Completed Phase 3 – 03 May 2022 to 05 May 2022 Innovation Foundry 10 Event: During the event, selected participants will collaborate and ideate with fellow SMEs, the S&T Directorate Future’s Team, and U.S. and International SOF Operators on the concept areas above. Selectees should plan for workdays from 0800-1700 ET.

How You Can Participate

For event-related questions, please contact Lindsay Horst,