1st Edition

War by Others’ Means Delivering Effective Partner Force Capacity Building

By Jack Watling, Nick Reynolds Copyright 2020

    A new era of great power competition places a strategic premium on the efficiency with which states can pursue their aims. There is therefore likely to be an expanded scope for partnered operations. Partner force capacity building has a long history, with very mixed results, yet there is little historical memory in the institutions tasked with carrying it out. War by Others’ Means uses archival research, interviews with practitioners, and observation of capacity building to understand why states undertake it, how they should select, train and equip their partners, and how they should manage the generation and withdrawal of trainers.


    1. Why Do Patrons Embark Upon Capacity Building?

    2. How Should Patrons Select their Partners?

    3. What Training Should be Provided?

    4. Who Should Deliver Training?

    5. What Equipment Should be Provided?

    6. When Should Training End?

    7. Conclusions


    Jack Watling is Research Fellow for Land Warfare at RUSI. Jack has recently conducted studies of deterrence against Russia, force modernisation, partner force capacity building, the future of corps operations, the future of fires and Iranian strategic culture. He has a PhD from Birckbeck University, with a thesis that examined the evolution of Britain’s policy responses to civil war in the early twentieth century. Prior to joining RUSI he worked in Iraq, Mali, Rwanda, Brunei and further afield. Originally a journalist he has contributed to Reuters, The Atlantic, Foreign Policy, the Guardian, Jane’s Intelligence Review and Haaretz among others. Jack was shortlisted for the European Press Prize Distinguished Writing Award in 2016, and won the Breakaway Award at the International Media Awards in 2017.

    Nick Reynolds is the Research Analyst for Land Warfare at RUSI. His research interests include land power, wargaming and simulation. Prior to joining RUSI he worked for Constellis. He holds a BA in War Studies and an MA in Conflict, Security and Development from King’s College London. During his time there, he was Head of Operations of the KCL Crisis Team, which organises large-scale crisis simulation events.