Strategic Framework - 00 - Banner Title
Strategic Framework
For Decisive Maritime Advantage
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Strategic Framework - 01 - Intro Quote

"Delivering emerging capabilities at speed and scale requires every member of our Navy team, including our industry, academic, and research partners, to embrace the urgency of the moment..."

Adm. Michael Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations, 2021
Strategic Framework - 02 - Introduction


The Naval Postgraduate School prepares defense leaders with the intellectual capabilities to meet operational and strategic challenges in a dynamic and complex security environment. To compete and win against 21st-century peer adversaries, the Navy’s education enterprise curriculum and research must deliver warfighting advantage. Expert faculty, experienced in defense and security related issues, develop and enhance the cognitive readiness of our operationally experienced warrior-scholar students through interdisciplinary graduate education and fundamental research in support of advanced knowledge, skills and solutions.  

Our nation’s strategic guidance is clear: we must do more.

  • Cognitive Readiness: Maintaining our intellectual and technological edge is fundamental to our decisive advantage at sea. 
  • Intellectual Leadership: To prevail in strategic competition, we must quickly develop and adopt new technologies, as well as the competencies and strategic thinkers need to deter, fight and win. 

This Strategic Framework builds upon our NPS transformation efforts and provides us with a shared vision for the future which combines our graduate education, research and innovation to generate cognitive readiness and intellectual leadership for the future force.

Strategic Framework - Side 01 - President Message
NPS President Ann Rondeau speaking

President's Message:

We are in long-term strategic competition, and U.S. maritime dominance is at risk. The Naval Postgraduate School is also in a state of strategic competition. In an era of increasing resource pressure, we must respond by advancing our education and research to ensure operational and strategic relevance...

Strategic Framework - 03 - Priorities

Enduring Strategic Priorities

This Strategic Framework centers on four interconnected Strategic Priorities.  Together they ensure a comprehensive approach to advancing the institution providing an outcomes-based focus to our mission that emphasizes ingenuity, intellectual application, and military professionalism, while deepening technical expertise in the art and science of warfighting.

Strategic Framework - 04 - Priorities Graphic


Strategic Framework - 05 - Objectives

Framework Objectives

Further guiding execution of the Strategic Priorities are the following set of near- to long-term Objectives.  These Framework Objectives are interdependent and provide insight to leaders coordinating transformation initiatives about the priority, requirements and timeline for supporting initiatives.

Matrix showing objectives and sub-priorities
Strategic Framework - 06 - Initial Actions


Initial Actions

The seven areas below will strengthen our foundation for continuous improvement.

  • Advance Curricula Reform: Continue transition to defense-focused, naval-relevant education program areas curricula, certificates, and short course offerings; extend the NPS campus through strategic leadership of distance learning...

  • Advance Relevant Research: Accelerate implementation of the Office of Research and Innovation; establish institutional support framework; initiate and foster formalized organization-to-organization relationships...

  • Foster a Culture of Innovation: Expand education of innovation process and practice across program areas; pilot innovation capstone projects to ensure relevant solutions, technology, and capabilities are fielded more quickly...

  • Invest in People: Develop an inclusive whole-of-institution civilian talent acquisition and development strategy; align recruitment, advancement, compensation, and incentives to enable institution strategic objectives...

  • Strengthen Fiscal Accountability: Continue responsible financial planning and resource management; refine institutional processes to develop an annual Program Objective Memorandum (POM) submission...

  • Modernize NPS Facilities: Continue academic and facility modernization; expand classified education and research capability and capacity; advance planning, design, and analysis for the state-of-the-art Naval Innovation Center...

  • Improve Organizational Responsiveness: Integrate the Navy’s “Get Real, Get Better” approaches to assess, understand, and improve performance; collect and analyze institutional data to access performance against key metrics...

Strategic Framework - Side 02 - Mission

Our Mission

To provide defense-focused graduate education, including classified studies and interdisciplinary research, to advance the operational effectiveness, technological leadership, and warfighting advantage of the Naval service.

Strategic Framework - Side 03 - Vision

Our Vision

The Naval Postgraduate School will become the nation’s leading institution for defense higher education and applied research, delivering transformative solutions and innovative leaders for decisive U.S. seapower and national defense.

Strategic Framework - 06 - Outcomes Title
Strategic Framework - 07 - Education Text


NPS is sought-after for advanced interdisciplinary education and alumni that can solve highly complex fleet problems. Demonstrating a mastery of technical, naval-relevant subjects, graduates return to the fleet and Fleet Marine Force with improved critical thinking and problem-solving skills and engage in continuous career-long learning that supports excellence in primary warfighting duties. NPS is the Department of Defense’s premier institution for education and research in science and technology, innovation, analysis and analytics, emerging technologies and...


Strategic Framework - 07 - Education Image

Education achieved graduation procession

Strategic Framework - 08 - Research Text


NPS is known for its responsive, high-impact research solutions. Basic and applied research at all classification level supports solving key operational problems. Hands-on, project-based education and applied research focus on threat-informed solutions and enhance educational outcomes. Enabled by the Naval Warfare Studies Institute (NWSI) as the front door to the NPS knowledge ecosystem, NPS research groups connect to relevant warfighting challenges in pursuit of outcomes supporting critical fleet needs at all levels of classification...

Strategic Framework - 08 - Research Image

Research in the Red Room

Strategic Framework - 09 - Innovation Text


NPS is synonymous with innovation. Leveraging the intellectual, operational, and entrepreneurial talent at NPS, the institution becomes a technology accelerator, incubator, and testbed for applications, concepts, and capabilities. Promising ideas are generated, analyzed, war-gamed, redteamed, and matured through capstone projects in a classified environment. NPS is a convening place for experimentation, rapid prototyping, and collaboration with industry and NR&DE partners. The Naval Innovation Center (NIC) at NPS is a center of innovation through applied research...

Strategic Framework - 09 - Innovation image

Innovation with students of NPS

Strategic Framework - 10 - Institution Text


NPS’ mission success is enabled by people, processes, and places. Expert faculty and staff thrive and grow, impacting and inspiring the students by modeling the advantages of life-long learning and innovation. Non-traditional opportunities to earn tenure attract and retain bright young minds. Our culture enables the institution to be a model command and a “super-connector” linking academia, industry, and defense to develop ideas, solve problems and accelerate the capability of the Joint Force. NPS has a lean and effective organization able to support advanced defense education...

Strategic Framework - 10 - Institution Image
NPS as the instutuion with students walking by.
Strategic Framework - 11 - Implementation


Implementation is through a portfolio of iterative plans that enable accomplishment of the strategic objectives for each priority in the near (1-2 years), mid (2-3 years), and far (3-5 years) range. These plans form a campaign and serve as the comprehensive approach for realizing the strategic vision.


Strategic Framework - 12 - Conclusion


The desired end state is recognition of NPS as the nation’s leading institution for defense higher education and applied research. Decisive maritime advantage requires NPS to be an institution valued for transformative solutions, and innovative, technologically competent leaders of character cognitively ready to outthink adversaries and command effectively in the Navy, Marine Corps, and Joint Force.


Strategic Framework - Side 04 - Quote

"Globally integrated and all-domain operations present challenges for tomorrow’s warfighters that our educational system must adapt to today. Being cognitively prepared to conduct these operations necessitates an adjustment in how we educate tomorrow’s warfighter." 

“Developing Today’s Joint Officers for Tomorrow’s Ways of War”, May 2020

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