Does Design Help or Hurt Military Planning: How NTM-A Designed a Plausible Afghan Security Force in an Uncertain Future, Part I

Author: Ben Zweibelson

Author’s Note: Many military professionals and academics ask for tangible examples in a combat environment of what design theory brings to a military organization conducting planning and decision-making.  As an operational-level planner in NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan/Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan (NTM-A/CSTC-A) in 2011, I had a unique opportunity to lead a planning team that fused design theory and other non-standard planning techniques into the military decision-making and wargame process. Those results, and our team’s precise recommendations, were eventually briefed and approved at the strategic level for our Coalition to implement a change in direction of long-range planning for Afghan security forces.  This is part I of a two-part series on how design practitioners produced an output that may shape the future form and capacity of the Afghan forces.

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Small Wars Journal - Does Design Help or Hurt Military Planning_ How NTM-A Designed a Plausible Afghan Security Force in an Uncertain Future, Part I - 2012-07-09

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