Organisational Learning and the Modern Army
A New Model for Lessons-Learned Processes
Drawing upon extensive original research, this book explores best practice in army lessons-learned processes.
Without the correct learning mechanisms, military adaptation can be blocked, or the wider lessons from adaptation can easily be lost, leading to the need to relearn lessons in the field, often at great human and financial cost. This book analyses the organisational processes and activities which can help improve tactical- and operational-level learning through case studies of lessons learned in two key NATO armies: that of Britain and of Germany. Providing the first comparative analysis of the variables which facilitate or impede the emergence of best practice in military learning, it makes an important contribution to the growing scholarship on knowledge management and learning in public organisations.
It will be of much interest to lessons-learned practitioners, and students of military and strategic studies, defence studies, organisation studies and security studies.
Table of Contents
Introduction: lessons-learned processes as the transmission belt from adaptation to innovation; 1 A model of best practice in military learning; 2 Theorising military learning; CASE STUDY 1 The evolution and performance of British Army lessons learned; 3 The development of the institutional architecture of British Army lessons learned: a tale of two potential absorptive capacities; 4 The performance of British Army lessons learned: tactical-level success and operational-level failure; 5 The British Army’s knowledge transformation capability: the struggle to establish a culture of experimentation and creativity; CASE STUDY 2 The evolution and performance of German Army lessons learned; 6 The development of the institutional architecture of German Army lessons learned: improving potential absorptive capacity; 7 The performance of German Army lessons learned: limited adaptation, innovation and emulation at the tactical and operational levels; 8 The impediments to knowledge transformation in the German Army; Reflections on the sources of military learning and future research agendas: getting leadership and processes right; Appendix; Index
Tom Dyson is Senior Lecturer in International Relations at Royal Holloway College. He is the author of The Politics of German Defence and Security, Neoclassical Realism and Defence Reform in post-Cold War Europe and the co-author (with Theodore Konstadinides) of European Defence Cooperation in EU Law and IR Theory.