Future Perfect: Effects Based Operations, Complexity and the Human Environment


  1. Vermaas, R.
Corporate Authors
Operational Research Div, Ottawa ONT (CAN) Directorate of Operational Research (Joint)
This study is the first in a series of monographs on the Effects Based Approach. It introduces the concept of Effects Based Operations (EBO) as a alternative means to pursue foreign and defence policy objectives. This concept relies heavily on the injection and fusion of specific inter-agency, academic, corporate, diplomatic, economic and coalition intelligence knowledge for the formulation of an Operational Net Assessment (ONA), as well as a recognition of the need for technological means to assist the decision maker in ascertaining the complexity of desired tactical end-states, or, ‘effects’, required for the attainment of a strategic objective. It is suggested that a dramatic shift in the traditional mind-set of decision makers is needed in order to plan for, assess, analyze, and task, future strategic operations. It is also suggested that Canada pursue the development of this concept. The concluding section will outline recommendations for the DND/CF and will posit question for further exploration. The Effects Based Approach is outcome based. The concept relies heavily on a shift in the psychological mind-set of the decision maker, as well as a suitable application of technology to the overall planning, decision making, and analysis phases of an operation. Indeed, the effective management and manipulation of large quantities of diverse data is necessary to maintain a shared situational awareness both within and outside of an area of operations as well as to achieve an
Report Number
ORD-DOR(JOINT)-RN-2004-01 — Research Note
Date of publication
01 Jan 2004
Number of Pages

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