JMAP image

Joint Warfighting - The Impact of Assumption and Bias

Are aspects of the JMAP fundamentally flawed? In the absence of a complete intelligence picture, planners often make a series of assumptions. These are based on an unproven assessment of the adversary plan. Within these assumptions lie a series of unanswered questions relating to ‘intent’. This article explores how bias and assumption can impact on the planning process and complicate the successful attainment of the end-state.

Dougal Robertson

Scenario Planning and Strategy in the Pentagon

Dr. Michael Fitzsimmons at the U.S. Army War College examines scenario plan­ning in the Pentagon. He demonstrates how uncertainty and com­plexity converge with the DOD’s bureaucratic decision-making to subvert what should be a straightforward process. His recommendations for reorienting this invite debate among strategists, planners, and the broader joint community.

US Department of Army
2 hrs
Two people tugging on a rope from opposite ends

Center of Gravity: What Clausewitz Really Meant (Part 1 of 2)

Part one of a two-part article written by Professor Joseph L. Strange, Marine Corps War College and COL Richard Iron, British Army.

This paper explores what Clausewitz really meant by the term “center of gravity”. The authors propose that he intended it to be a strength, either moral or physical, and a dynamic and powerful agent in its own right. The authors also suggest that the current Joint and NATO definition of center of gravity is incorrect, implying it to be a source of strength, and that this mis-definition has been responsible for much of the confusion about the concept that exists today.

Joseph Strange and Richard Iron
Map laid out on a table with people working around it

Managing Assumptions in Planning and Execution

Jeffery Marshall

Capability Boost: Trials Demonstrate Enhanced ViDAR/ScanEagle Package

This article from Jane’s International Defence Review discusses the use of Visual Detection and Ranging (ViDAR) technology on the ScanEagle unmanned aerial system (UAS) platform to provide detection capabilities comparable to radar using Electrooptical (EO) and Infra Red (IR) sensors.

30 m
Illuminated human brain

Redefining the Center of Gravity

COL Dale C. Eikmeier, USA (Ret.), is an Assistant Professor at the U.S. Army Command and General staff College. COL Eikmeier shares his thoughts on identifying Center of Gravity. This method will provide campaign planners with an analytical tool that will fulfil doctrinal intent.

Dale Eikmeier
Open book with spectacles on top

Understanding Centers of Gravity and Critical Vulnerabilities (Part 2 of 2)

Part two of a two-part article written by Professor Joseph L. Strange, Marine Corps War College and COL Richard Iron, British Army.

This paper examines the role of centers of gravity in operational design, looking at the relationship between centers of gravity and critical vulnerabilities. It suggests an analytical model that joint warfighters and planners on both sides of the Atlantic can use to assist strategic and operational-level planning. The model helps to analyze existing and potential vulnerabilities of a center of gravity, and determine which of those could be especially critical.

Joe Strange
Human and robot facing each other

Google Ponders the Shortcomings of Machine Learning

This article discusses Google’s AI research project Google Brain and DeepMind and their explanation for why, despite advances in computing power, machine learning still lags behind human cognitive skills, particularly the ability to “generalize beyond one’s experience”. The article describes the use of graphs of relationships to replicate neural networks as a potential area of future advancement in machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Tiernan Ray
Eye with electronic interior

Artificial intelligence system uses transparent, human-like reasoning to solve problems

This article describes a method by which a computer can recognise objects using Transparency by Design Network (TbD-Net) developed at the MIT Lincoln Laboratory. Researchers have used human-like reasoning to develop an algorithm which they claim can outperform other visual recognition software and algorithms because humans can view its reasoning process to determine where and how it is making mistakes.

Kylie Foy
Himan man removing his face and showing circuitry beneath

Neuro Embodied Design: How We’ll Become Cyborgs and Extend Human Potential

Humans will soon have new bodies that forever blur the line between the natural and synthetic worlds, says bionics designer Hugh Herr. In an unforgettable talk, he details "NeuroEmbodied Design," a methodology for creating cyborg function that he's developing at the MIT Media Lab, and shows us a future where we've augmented our bodies in a way that will redefine human potential -- and, maybe, turn us into superheroes. "During the twilight years of this century, I believe humans will be unrecognizable in morphology and dynamics from what we are today," Herr says. "Humanity will take flight and soar."

Hugh Herr
Map of earth and the oceans

Queryable Earth: A Searchable database of Earth

What if you could search the surface of the Earth the same way you search the internet? Will Marshall and his team at Planet use the world's largest fleet of satellites to image the entire Earth every day. Now they're moving on to a new project: using AI to index all the objects on the planet over time -- which could make ships, trees, houses and everything else on Earth searchable, the same way you search Google. He shares a vision for how this database can become a living record of the immense physical changes happening across the globe. "You can't fix what you can't see," Marshall says. "We want to give people the tools to see change and take action."

Will Marshall
Fantasy battle scene

Dr. Phillip Karber on the Russian Way of War

Speaking to staff and cadets at the United States’ West Point Academy, Dr. Phillip Karber describes what he has learned about the Russian way of war from thirty trips he has made to Ukraine, including six months on the front lines of the war in the country's east. This lecture highlights how a re-imagined Russian military is conducting technologically advanced joint-land combat against a ‘near peer’ military – the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

Modern War Institute