Working Group 2 Military History

Working Group 2 is focusing on military history for military professionals, teachers and researchers.

Military history is one of the important branches in military studies. WG 2 helps to popularize forgotten topics. We are addressing a large variety of themes and topics: history of warfare and military practice, including matters related to strategy, operational planning, tactical doctrine, art of war, military operations, doctrinal subjects, military institutions, innovation in the past. We have the opportunity to have a multinational working group which is supporting broader perspectives.


Paul Nash, Canadian War Artist, The Ypres Salient at Night (1918). 

Current Chair and Contact for Working group 

Art Johanson

Baltic Defence College,

Art Johanson

Art Johanson graduated from the University of Tartu in general history, specialising in military history topics. In the Baltic Defence College he is teaching history related topics. He is Head of the International Society of Military Sciences Working Group 2 (Military History). He has worked on multiple projects in political-military dimension and is one of the board members of the Institute of Society Studies. Before the Baltic Defence College, he was Head of the Strategy and Military History Department in the Estonian National Defence College (ENDC) and Director of the ENDC Museum. His areas of expertise include: History of the Operational Art, Estonian Military History, Baltic Military History, Military Theory, and Strategic Studies.

Past Chairs:

  • Dr. James Corum, Baltic Defence College
  • Dr. Douglas Ford, Baltic Defence College

Scope: the aim and purpose of the Working Group

The military history working group aims to improve knowledge of the history of warfare and military practice through practitioners’ research, communities of practice, and networks of learning. These processes are also subject to study and reporting to improve both individual and institutional practice.

Keyword descriptors

History of warfare and military practice, including matters related to strategy, operational planning, tactical doctrine, art of war, history of warfare,military operations, doctrinal options and military planning

Topics addressed 

Logistics, intelligence, propaganda, technology and innovation, military leadership, development of military institutions, civil-military relations, impact of wars on society, military thought, origins of wars, dynamics of conflict resolution, diplomacy and international relations

Current Working Group Activities

  • Finding authors to contribute to the proposed Handbook of Military Sciences in the fields related to military history
  • Supporting the enhancement of curricula content by linking up with experts in other institutions 
  • Sharing curricula, course outlines, reading lists and expert biographies
  • Providing a clearinghouse for enquiries about sabbaticals and faculty exchanges (limited to establishing initial contacts)
  • Sharing notifications of conferences and publications of interest to the members of the working group
  • Coordinating special journal issues or publication of relevant work by organizing panels and linking authors and editors

Many members of the Military History working group are involved in the annual Baltic Military History Conference, which has been held every year since 2009.

History of the Working Group

This is one of the original eight working groups of the ISMS established at Amsterdam in 2008.

Related Contact information

Laurier Centre for Military, Strategic, and Disarmament Studies, Waterloo, Canada, Waterloo, Canada

Annual Colloquium, Canadian Military History 14-15 May 2021

Baltic Defence College, Annual Military History Conference  

A new journal of military history, Nuova Antologia Militare: Rivista interdisciplinare della società Italiana di storia militare, has now published three issues, open access online. This journal provides abstracts in English, and publishes articles from ancient to contemporary military history in both English and Italian., Editor, Virgilio Ilari,