The International Crisis War Game will be hosted by the Hoover Institution at Stanford University on May 27th, 2020


The war game explores the relationship between new technologies, domestic politics, conventional military capabilities, and nuclear threats. Players simulate decision-making roles in a National Security cabinet and come to the war game as leaders in private industry, government, academia, and the military. The aim is to better understand the role that emerging technologies play in crisis decision-making and how Cold War paradigms of deterrence and crisis escalation apply in a world with new capabilities and vulnerabilities.

The International Crisis Virtual War Game at the Hoover Institution is the first ever iteration of the game played completely virtually using the Zoom platform, but it is a part of a larger set of in person games that have been run all over the world over the last 2 years to compare behaviors across countries and cultures within crises.

As a player in this virtual game, the group of participants will first be given two hypothetical crisis scenarios and a briefing on capabilities and threats. Players will then be placed in teams and asked to represent a National Security cabinet that generates priority objectives and debates courses of action. The war game culminates in the development of a whole of government response plan to the crisis. Finally, the event concludes with a plenary session back in a large group in which players will share lessons learned from the war game and suggest potential recommendations for policies on emerging threats and crisis dynamics.

We have currently reached capacity for the May 27 event.  If you would like to be added to the waitlist please continue with the registration link.  


We believe that the national security landscape is changing at a remarkable pace and that war games provide a forward-thinking opportunity to mold that landscape for international stability and prosperity. We hope that you will be able to join us to help us all better understand how we can adapt to these emerging challenges and opportunities. 

Please note that as an attendee at this event, you will be a participant in a Stanford research protocol.


Time Content

0900 – 0925

Welcome, platform and game overview, and Scenario 1 brief 


Players are sent to breakout rooms

0925 – 1005

Players assign roles, review info, and complete Response Plan 1

1005 – 1015

Players complete a survey


Players return from breakout rooms

1015 – 1020

Scenario 2 brief


Players are sent to breakout rooms

1020 – 1050

Players complete Response Plan for Scenario 2 

1050 – 1100

Players complete a survey


Players return from breakout rooms

1100 – 1130

Final plenary 





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