Last update: 08-Mar-2006 18:44 NATO Update

20 Feb. 2006


Testing “effects-based” operations

Multinational Experiment 4 kicks off

A major multinational experiment being held in simulation centres across the globe from 20 February to 17 March is testing new ways of sharing information before, during and after operations.

The aim is to give decision-makers at all levels a unified picture of the situation on the ground in order to facilitate decision-making.

Military officials and civilians from eight NATO and partner countries are taking part and simulation centres in Canada, France, Germany, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States have linked up to create the experiment environment.

Achieving desired effects

The experiment is part of a new approach to operations, which experts refer to as “effects-based”.

Rather than focusing on how planned actions are being executed, the new approach identifies and plans for changes in the behaviour of key players in order to identify opportunities for creating desired effects.

In other words, decision-makers not only have to decide “are things being done right?” but also “are the right things being done?”.

A key aspect of the new approach is the timely sharing and analysis of information from a wide range of sources.

NATO’s Alliance Command Transformation is participating in the experiment through the Ataturk Wargaming, Simulation and Cultural Centre in Istanbul, Turkey.

It is specifically looking at the aspects of the experiment that are pertinent to NATO’s rapidly deployable Response Force, which is due to reach full operational capability this year.