Date Signed: 1/12/2018
1. This message serves as an announcement for the 2d quarter FY-18 Commandants Innovation Challenge, sponsored by the Marine Corps Rapid Capabilities Office (MCRCO). The purpose of the challenges is to solicit innovative ideas from Marines, Sailors, and government civilians from across the Marine Corps.
2. Background. The Information Environment (IE) functions as a conduit for influence on decision-making, and command and control. The IE is a key component of the commanders assigned operational environment and battlespace. Our ability to rapidly obtain, share, and apply information or knowledge about the environment is critical to operating effectively in this space. The IE spans from the strategic to tactical levels and provides a medium for affecting actions across the physical domains. The IE is composed of three interrelated dimensions: the physical, the informational, and the cognitive. The physical dimension includes command and control systems, the supporting infrastructure, as well as the human terrain. The informational dimension includes the manner and flow by which information is collected, processed, stored, disseminated, and protected. The cognitive dimension includes the knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions of the people. Information Environment Operations (IE Ops) represent a broad set of activities occurring in or through the IE which are conducted at the operational or strategic level to achieve operational or strategic objectives. The MAGTF may support theater or national/strategic objectives by conducting tactical level IE Ops.
3. Challenge. How can the Marine Corps man, train or equip to perform the following functions of MAGTF Information Environment Operations:
2.a. Information Environment (IE) is defined as the aggregate of individuals, organizations, and systems that collect, process, disseminate, or act on information.
2.b. Information Environment Operations (IE Ops) represents a broad set of activities occurring in or through the IE which are conducted at the operational or strategic level to achieve operational or strategic objectives.
2.c. The current version of the MAGTF Information Environment Operations Concept of Employment, Signature Management Concept, Electromagnetic Spectrum Operations Concept, Space Operations Concept, and Defensive Cyberspace Operations – Internal Defensive Measures Concept of Employment are available at: https://marinecorpsconceptsandprograms.com/concepts
4. Evaluation Criteria: Submissions will be evaluated based on four criteria.
3.a. Assure enterprise command and control systems and critical systems – Actions to operate and defend networks, systems and information in order to enable command and control and the assured operation of critical systems.
3.b. Provide information environment battlespace awareness – Actions to characterize the physical, informational and cognitive dimensions of the Information Environment in order to identify challenges, opportunities and comparative advantages for the MAGTF.
3.c. Attack and exploit networks, systems and information – Actions in accordance with approved authorities to exploit or attack adversary networks, systems, signatures and information in order to create advantages for the MAGTF.
3.d. Inform domestic and international audiences – Actions taken to inform domestic and international audiences IOT build understanding and support for operational and institutional objectives.
3.e. Influence foreign target audiences – Actions taken in accordance with approved authorities to influence select foreign audiences and affect their decision-making and behaviors IOT create conditions favorable to operational objectives.
3.f. Deceive foreign target audiences – Actions executed in accordance with approved authorities to induce ambiguity, misunderstanding, resource misallocation and delayed actions in order to deliberately mislead adversary decision makers, cause them to reveal strengths, dispositions, and future intentions while protecting the MAGTFs true capability, readiness, posture and intent.
3.g. Control of information environment operations capabilities, resources and activities – Actions taken to provide the commander with the ability to exercise command and control and integrate assigned Marine, Naval and Joint Information Warfare assets and enhance the MAGTFs ability to operate in the Information Environment.
5. Beginning 16 Jan 2018, Marines (active and reserve), Sailors, and government civilians from across the Marine Corps will have the opportunity to participate in this Innovation Challenge. Ideas can be submitted at: http://www.marines.mil/innovate until 20 February 2018. Submitted ideas will be carefully reviewed and winner(s) will be selected as well as noteworthy submissions identified. Challenge winners will be announced via MARADMIN, the website, and e-mail beginning 31 Mar 2018.
4.a. Does the submitted idea address the challenge?
4.b. Is the submitted idea feasible?
4.c. How original or innovative is the submitted idea?
4.d. Is the submitted idea complete?
6. Individuals are encouraged to work and submit as teams. Everyone is encouraged to comment on ideas throughout the submission period to continue the ideas development. A submission is not required prior to commenting on the site. Individuals are allowed to submit more than one idea.
7. Release authorized by Lieutenant General Robert S. Walsh, Deputy Commandant, Combat Development and Integration.