The Transformation Trinity. A Model for Strategic Innovation and its Application to Space Power
AIR UNIV MAXWELL AFB AL SCHOOL OF ADVANCED AIRPOWER STUDIES
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The world that lies in store for us over the next 25 years will surely challenge our received wisdom about how to protect American interests and advance American values. With these words, the Commission on National Security in the 21st Century captured the exciting challenges this study sets out to explore. First, this study develops a generalized model for United States military transformations in peacetime. To develop the model the author combines observations made by several historians about recurrent trends in military strategic innovation. The author concludes that, after taking into account inevitable uncertainty, there are three identifiable factors that occur in most cases of military transformation. The three key factors are the need for a coherent, congruent vision an emerging culture that bolsters the vision and develops competing theories of victory to fulfill the vision and a process for honestly assessing the maturing vision and its supporting theories of victory. After defining the limitations of the model and its usefulness, the author applies the framework to an important aspect of national security-the future of space power. The framework is used to study the recent approach to space power from a civilian policy and military application perspective. Application of the transformation model highlights some important points about the present approach for developing space power. First, the civilian vision is not completely congruent with the military vision and the military vision is inconsistent. Second, the military-primarily the Air Force-has made moderate but hesitant progress towards nurturing a space power culture with some unexpected consequences. Third, the military has an uncoordinated, haphazard approach to assessment that blurs the merit of the space power vision and associated theories.
- Space Warfare