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Coping with Uncertainty: - En studie om hur en NATO-medlem kontra en icke NATO-medlem hanterar ovisshet
Swedish National Defence College.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

In a modern world with extensive military cross-border cooperation, interoperability is often a decisive factor in order to reach success. The degree of interoperability is strongly influenced by our uncertainty-coping methods. A doctrine regulates and determines methods used by the military. Thus making the doctrines a profound source of information regarding methods taken by armed forces. By studying and comparing methods of uncertainty-coping we can see differences that might affect interoperability between coalition members.


According to eminent scientists, uncertainty is a phenomenon which presence is inevitable in decision-making processes. Martin van Creveld states that organizations need to make conscious choices and strategies in order to cope with uncertainty. He presents a theoretical thesis, in which the organization possesses six interrelated demands.

Demands that, if fulfilled, will optimize the organization in its quest for certainty.

The concept of Network Centric Warfare(NCW) influences the way we think of future war in a considerable way, and it presents new ways of decreasing and coping with uncertainty. In this study, van Creveld’s thesis with six demands and the principles of NCW formed an analytic tool which I used to analyse uncertainty coping and doctrinal interoperability regarding uncertainty management.


This study compares a NATO member - Norway, and a non-NATO member - Sweden.

By analysing and comparing these nation’s Operational and C2 doctrines, I searched to discover how the respective nations decide to cope with uncertainty.

Similarities were found and considerable differences in methods were not identified. However, this paper discovered and charted some minor and semi-minor differences in coping methods. For example, the analytic tool found that staffing methods, linked with uncertainty coping - somewhat varies between the armed forces in question.  

This diverseness may cause interoperability problems in future collaboration


Considering the delimitation of this study I cannot say that interoperability has been reached. However, the similar doctrinal methods of uncertainty coping, gives us a slight piece of a greater picture. A piece which this paper found hypothetic interoperable.


Even though the study uses the cases of Norway and rgSweden, the intention of this method is to be universal in its comparison between nations being members of NATO and those nations who aren’t.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 41 p.
Keyword [en]
Coping with Uncertainty, interoperability, Network Centric Warfare, NCW
Keyword [sv]
Ovisshet, van Creveld, NATO, Nätverksbaserat försvar
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-5496OAI: diva2:825914
Subject / course
War Studies Thesis
Educational program
Officersprogrammet (OP)
Available from: 2015-07-03 Created: 2015-06-24 Last updated: 2015-08-04Bibliographically approved

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