Students: Submit Your Papers for the Inman Award!


Our friends at the University of Texas have a great opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students studying national security and intelligence.

Overview: The Inman Award competition is designed to recognize outstanding research and writing by students at the undergraduate or graduate levels on topics related to intelligence and national security. There is no prescribed topic, format, or length for papers submitted. It is presumed that most papers will have been prepared to satisfy a course or degree requirement of the author’s academic program. Co-authored and “team project” papers will be accepted.

About: The Bobby R. Inman award recognizes more than six decades of distinguished public service by Bobby R. Inman, Admiral, U.S. Navy (Ret.). Admiral Inman served in multiple leadership positions in the U.S. military, intelligence community, private industry, and at The University of Texas. His previous intelligence posts include Director of Naval Intelligence, Vice-Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, Director of the National Security Agency, and Deputy Director of Central Intelligence. He continues to serve as a teacher, advisor, and mentor to students, faculty members, and current government officials while occupying the Lyndon B. Johnson Centennial Chair in National Policy at the LBJ School of Public Affairs. His areas of teaching and research are focused on political, economic, and military activities, policy processes and institutions, international affairs and diplomacy, and intelligence and national security.

Eligibility: All undergraduate and graduate students enrolled at an accredited U.S. higher education institution during the 2017-18 academic year are eligible to participate. A student may submit only one paper that has not been published previously.

Deadline: June 30, 2018

Submission Requirements: Papers should be submitted electronically to Paige Bufkin at and include a short biographic profile of the author with current contact information, the date when the paper was completed, and a description of any course requirement that was satisfied by the paper. All papers should be appropriately attributed using footnotes or endnotes.

Judging Process and Standards: Papers will be judged on the basis of academic rigor, clear presentation, creativity, and the potential to contribute positively to the U.S. intelligence community. Faculty and staff members associated with the Intelligence Studies Project, Strauss Center, Clements Center, and/or LBJ School of Public Affairs will review the submissions and select the winning papers.

Awards and Recognition: The Inman Award and a $5,000 prize will be presented to the author of the winning paper. Two papers will be recognized as Inman Award semifinalists and $2,500 will be awarded to the author of each. Cash prizes will be conveyed directly to sole authors or divided equally among co-authors. At least one cash prize will be awarded to an undergraduate author. Recipients of cash prizes are solely responsible for any tax liability that may accompany receipt of such funds.

If requested, the Intelligence Studies Project will assist in publishing the winning paper and ensure it is made available to current intelligence practitioners interested in the paper’s topic. At the discretion of the Intelligence Studies Project, the authors of meritorious papers that are not recognized with an award and cash prize may be offered support in further research and editing in anticipation of publication.

Ownership and Use: All papers submitted in connection with the Inman Award competition shall become the property of the University of Texas at Austin and the Intelligence Studies Project for 60 days after the June 30, 2018 deadline. All rights revert to the author(s) after that date or prior to that date with express authorization of the Intelligence Studies Project.

Intellectual Integrity: Papers submitted in connection with the Inman Award competition will be presumed to satisfy the academic standards of the institution where the author is enrolled. At the sole discretion of the Intelligence Studies Project, papers judged not to meet appropriate standards of intellectual integrity will be disqualified from the competition.

Questions: Please contact Paige Bufkin at with any questions regarding the Inman Award competition.

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