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Strategy and Defence PlanningMeeting the Challenge of Uncertainty$
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Colin S. Gray

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198701842

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198701842.001.0001

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Guidance for Defence Planning

Guidance for Defence Planning

(p.162) 6 Guidance for Defence Planning
Strategy and Defence Planning

Colin S Gray

Oxford University Press

This chapter provides a guide to the mission of defence planning. In particular, the text examines the defence planning function with reference to the following major considerations: motivation, the drivers of political and strategic behaviour; priorities, the need to comprehend what is most important; tolerance of error and adaptability to circumstance, or resilience despite some legacy of error in a national defence programme; science and certainty, the challenge of settling for ‘good enough’ solutions to questions that cannot be answered with the certainty of science; politics and economics; and finally strategy and history, referring to permanent dialogue about continuity and change. This chapter discusses the respective domains of perceived necessity, and discretionary choice. This chapter unifies the argument of the book, and facilitates understanding of the subject of defence planning. Particular attention is paid to the explanations why technical defence analysis makes only a modest contribution to the strategic function.

Keywords:   defence analysis, motivation, priorities, adaptability, science, strategy, history

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