Accession Number:

ADA621696

Title:

Shifting Perspectives: Using Complexity Theory to Anticipate Strategic Surprise

Descriptive Note:

Master's thesis

Corporate Author:

NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV NORFOLK VA JOINT ADVANCED WARFIGHTING SCHOOL

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2015-08-08

Pagination or Media Count:

62.0

Abstract:

In the years since the attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States Department of Defense intelligence organizations have not provided adequate warning to decision makers about events in the strategic environment. The coming decade will see advances in worldwide interconnectivity coupled with shifting ideas about how people wield power, resulting in a strategic environment that is increasingly complex. Current intelligence analytical methods, based on reductionist approaches to science, are insufficient for allowing analysts to view the international system holistically and anticipate unexpected behavior or activity. Complexity theory offers promise in allowing analysts to comprehend the strategic environment better. Complexity theory focuses on relationships between components of complex systems and provides alternative ways of considering emergent behavior based on the introduction of different stimuli. The incorporation of the principles of complexity theory into analyst training will provide intelligence analysts with additional tools to keep strategic leaders better informed and help prevent future strategic surprise.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Intelligence

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE