NATO - North Atlantic Treaty Organization

NATO Network Enabled Capability

The NATO Network Enabled Capability (NNEC) programme is the Alliance’s ability to federate various capabilities at all levels, military (strategic to tactical) and civilian, through an information infrastructure. But the main objective of the NNEC programme, illustrated by the slogan “Share to Win”, is to initiate a culture change that begins with people. Interacting with each other and sharing information will lead to better situational awareness and faster decision making, which ultimately saves lives, resources and improves collaboration between nations.

Components of the policy

The networking and information infrastructure (NII) is the supporting structure that enables collaboration and information sharing amongst users and reduces the decision-cycle time. This infrastructure enables the connection of existing networks in an agile and seamless manner.

This leads to Information Superiority, which is the ability to get the right information to the right people at the right time. NATO defines information superiority as the operational advantage derived from the ability to collect, process, and disseminate an uninterrupted flow of information while exploiting or denying an adversary’s ability to do the same.

The NNEC programme provides various benefits to all levels, military and civilian. Some of these benefits are: .

  • Improved efficiency
  • Drastic increase in interoperability between nations
  • Improved and secure way of sharing information
  • Better information quality
  • Faster decisions and speed of command.

Mechanisms

NNEC aims to ensure coherence between all projects but will not replace existing projects or programmatic management.  Moreover, one of the goals of NNEC is to re-use, as much as possible, the existing assets of the NATO nations.

To this end, NATO’s Allied Command Transformation (ACT) has chosen to divide NNEC in smaller pieces called ‘Coherence Areas’:

  • Operational Concepts and Requirements Implications (OCRI) focused on the operator,
  • Architecture & Services Definition and Specification  (ASDS) focused on architecture,
  • Implementation (IMP),
  • and a steering group, Leadership & Guidance (L&G), to make the necessary link with the political level of NATO.

Evolution

At the Prague Summit in November 2002, NATO recognized that transformation of the military based upon Information Age principles was essential, and pursued a course of transformation denoted as NATO Network-Enabled Capabilities (NNEC).

In November 2003, nine NATO nations (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, Spain, The United Kingdom and The United States) signed an arrangement to join in funding a feasibility study on NATO Network Enabled Capability (NNEC) as an important step towards NATO transformation. The study was carried out by the NATO C3 Agency (NC3A).

In 2009, the ACT launched an awareness campaign within NATO, as well as in NATO Nations and beyond, to promote the NNEC concept and have it adopted NATO-wide.  Achieving full collaboration and full coherence between the various NATO and NATO Nations projects is the long term goal.

NNEC is about people first, then processes, and finally technology.