Digital warfighting temporalities and drone discourse

Anna Jackman

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As drones have emerged as icons of contemporary warfare so too have drone operators become symbols of contemporary warfighting. While drone scholarship to date has predominantly centred upon exploring the drone’s “functioning” and “implications”, including interrogating the ‘in-theatre’ experiences of operators, this article responds to calls for further attentiveness to the “making of” the drone (Klauser and Pedrozo, 2015). In empirically examining the ‘making of’ the drone operator, it turns to their training, and in particular the use of simulators therein. This focus, it argues, offers an alternative accounting of the drone operator, one that both revisits and complicates existing and enduring narratives of drone operation and/as videogaming, and one that offers an alternative temporality and ‘site’ through which to explore how drones come to ‘function’.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalDigital War
Publication statusPublished - 20 Mar 2020


  • Drones
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
  • Digital warfare
  • Simulation
  • Training

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