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30 December 2012

Military Cyber Influence Operations Theory

Related:

1019.pdf    Military Information Operations Primer           December 29, 2012 (3.1MB)
1018.pdf    Military Information Influence Operations        December 29, 2012 (1.3MB)
1017.pdf    Military Influence Operations and the Internet   December 29, 2012


http://www.au.af.mil/info-ops/theory.htm

theory and research

information operations theory, theories, communications theory


Basics and OverviewsBack to Top


Relating to Doctrine and StrategyBack to Top

Who's Doing ResearchBack to Top

U. S. Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social SciencesBack to Top

Symbols & SymbologyBack to Top

Media TheoryBack to Top

Surveys, Polling, & Statistical AnalysisBack to Top

Focus GroupsBack to Top
  • Community Tool Box, National Park Service - includes tools such as
    • Consensus building
    • Networking
    • spiffy Focus groups
    • Press conferences
    • Group mapping
    • and many more - with sections for each tool on "use it if ..." and "forget it if ..."

  • Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about focus groups - Dept of Education - selecting the participants, writing up and presenting the results

  • Qualitative Research: Introducing focus groups, by Kitzinger, University of Glasgow, BMJ, July 1995

  • When to Use Focus Group Interviews, Minnesota Dept of Health - adapted from Krueger and Casey (see below)
    • [ed.] consider using when (see link for expanded text)
      • Insights are needed in exploratory or preliminary studies.
      • There is a communication or understanding gap between groups or categories of people.
      • The purpose is to uncover factors relating to complex behavior or motivation. Focus groups can provide insight into complicated topics where opinions or attitudes are conditional or where the area of concern relates to multifaceted behavior or motivation.
      • You desire ideas to emerge from the group. Groups possess the capacity to become more than the sum of their parts, to exhibit a synergy that individuals alone cannot possess.
      • The researcher needs additional information to prepare for a large-scale study. Focus groups have provided researchers with valuable insights into conducting complicated and often quantifiable investigations.
    • [ed.] you may not want to use when (see link for expanded text)
      • The environment is emotionally charged and more information of any type is likely to intensify the conflict. This is likely to occur in situations where the issues are polarized, trust has deteriorated and the participants are in a confrontational attitude.
      • The researcher has lost control over critical aspects of the study. When control is relinquished to other individuals or groups, the study is prone to manipulation and bias.
      • Statistical projections are needed. Focus groups do not involve sufficient numbers of participants nor does the sampling strategy lend itself to statistical projections.
      • You cannot ensure the confidentiality of sensitive information.

  • Focus Groups: A Practical Guide for Applied Research (3rd Ed.), by Richard A. Krueger and Mary Anne Casey


Game TheoryBack to Top

Behavior Modeling & AnalysisBack to Top

Insider Threat ModelsBack to Top
  • Understanding the Insider Threat, RAND Proceedings of a March 2004 Workshop
    • Plenary and breakout sessions discussed various aspects of the problem, including intelligence community system models, vulnerabilities and exploits, attacker models, and event characterization.

  • Research on Mitigating the Insider Threat to Information Systems - #2, RAND Proceedings of a Workshop Held August, 2000 - including
    • Chapter 3 -Insider Threat Models
    • Appendix A: An Insider Threat Model for Model Adversaries
    • Appendix B: An Insider Threat Model for Adversary Simulation
    • Appendix C: Modeling Behavior of the Cyber-Terrorist
    • Appendix D: Can Technology Reduce the Insider Threat?
    • Appendix E: The Insider Threat to Information Systems
    • Appendix F: The Insider Espionage Threat
    • Appendix G: Insider Threat - A Theoretical Model
    • Appendix H: Information Assurance Cyberecology

  • The Insider Threat to Information Systems, by Shaw, Ruby, and Post - posted by the Defense Security Service (DSS)
    • In summary, the research literature which we have surveyed identifies a coherent cluster of risk factors characteristic of a vulnerable subgroup of Critical Information Technology Insiders (CITIs).
      • Introversion
      • Social and Personal Frustrations
      • Computer Dependency
      • Ethical "Flexibility"
      • Reduced Loyalty
      • Entitlement
      • Lack of Empathy


Social Network Analysis (SNA)Back to Top

Bayesian Inference and Decision TheoryBack to Top

Evolutionary Cognitive Neuroscience (ECN)Back to Top

Chaos TheoryBack to Top

Rumor PropagationBack to Top
  • Rumor and Gossip Research, by Rosnow and Foster, in Psychological Science Agenda, April 2005 - American Psychological Association - excerpts below
    • We should distinguish between rumor and gossip, as each appears to function differently in its pure state. Rumors have been described as public communications that are infused with private hypotheses about how the world works (Rosnow, 1991), or more specifically, ways of making sense to help us cope with our anxieties and uncertainties (Rosnow, 1988, 2001). On the other hand, as Wert and Salovey (2004b) noted, "almost as many functions of gossip have been argued as writers to write about gossip" (p. 77). More than rumor, gossip tends to have an "inner-circleness" about it, in that it is customarily passed between people who have a common history or shared interests.
    • Allport and Postman called their most far-reaching assertion "the basic law of rumor." It declared that rumor strength (R) will vary with the importance of the subject to the individual concerned (i) times the ambiguity of the evidence pertaining to the topic at hand (a), or R ? i × a. The basic law of rumor was not empirically grounded in any rumor research, but was adapted from the earlier work of Douglas McGregor (1938) on factors influencing predictive judgments (Rosnow, 1980).

    • As another recent illustration, Air Force Captain Stephanie R. Kelley (2004), for her Master's thesis at the Naval Postgraduate School, did a content analysis of 966 rumors collected in Iraq from a weekly feature in the Baghdad Mosquito. Proceeding from the idea that rumors serve as a window into people's uncertainties and anxieties, she identified fears inhibiting cooperation with U.S. counterinsurgency efforts and formulated ideas for improving Coalition information campaigns. [ed. - see that thesis below]

  • spiffy Rumors in Iraq: a Guide to Winning Hearts and Minds (local copy), by Kelley, Sep 2004, Naval Postgraduate School

  • spiffy A Theory of Rumor Transmission, by Buckner, in The Public Opinion Quarterly, Spring 1965

  • Problem Solving in Social Interactions on the Internet: Rumor As Social Cognition, by Bordia and Difonzo, Social Psychology Quarterly, March 2004 - abstract below
    • Rumor discourse has been conceptualized as an attempt to reduce anxiety and uncertainty via a process of social sensemaking. Fourteen rumors transmitted on various Internet discussion groups were observed and content analyzed over the life of each rumor. With this (previously unavailable) more ecologically robust methodology, the intertwined threads of sensemaking and the gaining of interpretive control are clearly evident in the tapestry of rumor discourse. We propose a categorization of statements (the Rumor Interaction Analysis System) and find differences between dread rumors and wish rumors in anxiety-related content categories. Cluster analysis of these statements reveals a typology of voices ("communicative postures") exhibiting sensemaking activities of the rumor discussion group, such as hypothesizing, skeptical critique, directing of activities to gain information, and presentation of evidence. These findings enrich our understanding of the long-implicated sensemaking function of rumor by clarifying the elements of communication that operate in rumor's social context.

  • Dynamics of rumor propagation on small-world networks, by Zenette, in Physical Review, Mar 2002


Lattice Theory & Formal Concept Analysis (FCA)Back to Top

Collective IntelligenceBack to Top
  • NASA 'Collective Intelligence' Can Send Space Messages Faster (local copy), NASA news, 21 Oct 2004
    • "The Internet is a huge network of computers relaying messages to one another," Wolpert explained. "We figured out how to change the goals of those computers so messages arrived at their ultimate destinations faster, with improvements of up to five times in certain Internet-based experiments," Wolpert said. The same type of collective intelligence will enable spacecraft to send messages faster to Earth and return more data.
    • These procedures also can help carry out other tasks such as programming nano-computers, controlling unpiloted aerial vehicles (UAVs) and running the national airspace where airliners fly, Wolpert ventured.

  • An Introduction to Collective Intelligence (local copy), by Wolpert and Tumer, NASA, Feb 2000

  • Collective Intelligence (local copy), by Wolpert, NASA, Jan 2003


Schmitt AnalysisBack to Top
  • An Introduction to Legal Aspects of Operations in Cyberspace (local copy), by Wingfield and Michael, Naval Postgraduate School, Apr 2004
    • There is, unfortunately, a catch—the UN Charter, the paradigmatic document of international law, takes a qualitative approach, not a quantitative one. The framers, writing at the end of WWII, wanted to discourage military coercion, even at the cost of increasing diplomatic and economic coercion. Deciding that even the most stiffly worded diplomatic note—or restrictive economic boycott—would be preferable to an armored division crashing across an international border, the framers incorporated a very low threshold for impermissible military activity and a very high threshold for nonmilitary activity. The problem with this approach, as the subsequent decades have shown, is that many forms of “nonmilitary” coercion—such as terrorism and so called “low intensity conflicts”—result in more death and destruction than many traditional military activities, and many of today’s information weapons look nothing like military weapons and technology of the past. Sixty years ago, a telegraph message was simply a means of communication, benign and unassuming. Perhaps today—and certainly in the future—its e-mail equivalent could carry a virus capable of wreaking just the sort of havoc described above.
    • Policy makers can overcome this intellectual and legal quandary by adhering to a forward-looking doctrine known as the “Schmitt Analysis.” By demonstrating how military coercion differs from diplomatic and economic coercion, Michael Schmitt, late of Yale, the Naval War College, and now at the Marshall Center in Europe, identified seven areas—severity, immediacy, directness, invasiveness, measurability, presumptive legitimacy, and responsibility—in which military operations differ qualitatively from nonmilitary ones. If any given operation were quantitatively “graded” in each of these seven areas, the results could be used to give a principled qualitative description of the operation, accurately classifying it as a use of force or not.
      • Severity: If people are killed or there is extensive property damage, the action is probably military; the less damage, the less likely the action is a “use of force.”
      • Immediacy: When the effects are seen within seconds to minutes—such as when a bomb explodes—the operation is probably military; if the effects take weeks or months to appear, it is more likely diplomatic or economic.
      • Directness: If the action taken is the sole cause of the result, it is more likely to be viewed as a use of force; as the link between cause and effect attenuates, so does the military nature of the act.
      • Invasiveness: A violated border is still an indicator of military operations; actions that are mounted from outside a target nation’s borders are probably more diplomatic or economic.
      • Measurability: If the effect can be quantified immediately—such as photographing a “smoking hole” where the target used to be—the operation has a strong military characteristic; the more subjective the process of evaluating the damage, the more diplomatic or economic.
      • Presumptive Legitimacy: State actors have a monopoly on the legitimate use of kinetic force, while other non-kinetic actions—attacks through or in cyberspace— often are permissible in a wider set of circumstances; actions that have not been the sole province of nation-states are less likely to be viewed as military.
      • Responsibility: If a state takes visible responsibility for any destructive act, it is more likely to be categorized as a traditional military operation; ambiguous responsibility militates for a non-military label.

  • Measured Responses to Cyber Attacks Using Schmitt Analysis (local copy), presentation by Michael and Wingfield, Nov 2003, at IEEE COMPSAC Web & Security Informatics Workshop

  • Measured Responses to Cyber Attacks Using Schmitt Analysis: A Case Study of Attack Scenarios for a Software-Intensive System (local copy), paper by Michael et al, Nov 2003, as posted by Naval Postgraduate School
    • In this paper we address the development of measured responses to coercive actions. We demonstrate, via a case study of kinetic and cyber attacks on a safety-critical software-intensive system, the application of the Schmitt Analysis to the question of whether the attacks have risen to the level of a “use of force” under international law, taking into account both the quantitative and qualitative aspects of the attacks.


Uncertainty Reduction TheoryBack to Top
  • A Comparative Study of Uncertainty Reduction Theory in High- and Low-Context Cultures, 1987 paper by Kim and Yoon - abstract (below) in ERIC
    • To test the cross-cultural validity of uncertainty reduction theory, a study was conducted using students from South Korea and the United States who were chosen to represent high- and low-context cultures respectively. Uncertainty reduction theory is based upon the assumption that the primary concern of strangers upon meeting is one of uncertainty reduction, or of increasing predictability of the behavior of both themselves and others in the interaction. The high-context/low-context culture distinction depends on the amount of contextual information left unstated in typical communication settings--Korean leaves much unstated, while American English spells out much information explicitly. Subjects, 88 Korean students at Yonsei university and 62 native American English speakers at the University of Massachusetts, responded to a questionnaire in their own language designed to determine the kind of information they would exchange upon first meeting someone. Results indicated little difference between the two types of culture with regard to interpersonal patterns in initial interactions. In both cultures, people exchanged background information more than sociability or personal interests and attitude and had a higher degree of certainty in their prediction of sociability than in their prediction of personal interests and attitude. (Seven tables of results and 10 references are appended.) (SKC)

  • Uncertainty Reduction Theory, interpersonal communication lesson from University of Twente, NL
    • Uncertainty reduction theory (URT) was initially presented as a series of axioms (universal truths which do not require proof) and theorems (propositions assumed to be true) which describe the relationships between uncertainty and several communication factors. URT was developed to describe the interrelationships between seven important factors in any dyadic exchange:

      • verbal communication,
        nonverbal expressiveness,
        information-seeking behavior,
        intimacy,
        reciprocity,
        similarity, and
        liking.


      This theoretical perspective was originated by C.R. Berger and Calabrese in 1975; they drew on the work of Heider (1952).

  • Unertainty Reduction Theory of Charles Berger - summary posted at Ohio University
    • "Berger uses seven axioms in order to reinforce his theory.
      • Axiom 1- As verbal communication increases, the level of uncertainty decreases.
        Axiom 2- As nonverbal expressiveness increases, the level of uncertainty decreases.
        Axiom 3- Uncertainty causes increased levels of information seeking.
        Axiom 4- High levels of uncertainty result in low levels of self disclosure.
        Axiom 5- Uncertainty causes increased levels of reciprocity.
        Axiom 6- Similarities decrease uncertainty whereas dissimilarities increase uncertainty.
        Axiom 7- High levels of uncertainty cause a decrease in liking whereas low levels of uncertainty increase liking.


Social Penetration TheoryBack to Top
  • Social Penetration: A Description, Research, and Evaluation, 1993 paper by Allensworth - abstract (below) in ERIC
    • Social penetration has been described by S.W. Littlejohn (1992) as "the process of increasing disclosure and intimacy in a relationship." The phrase "social penetration" originated with I. Altman and D. Taylor, the foremost researchers in this area. From other theories, Altman and Taylor developed a unified theory which provided a stable base from which researchers could study. Before an understanding of the theory can be obtained, there must be knowledge of the philosophical perspective behind the orientation. Using the systems perspective, the definition of communication that supports social penetration theory is, as follows: communication is the process of exchanging symbols and gaining understanding and sharing from the exchange. Social penetration is consistently viewed as having 4 stages of penetration, summarized by Michael Roloff (1981):

      • (1) orientation, with a ritualized conversation and disclosure of superficial information;
        (2) exploratory affective exchange--communication about superficial topics is expanded and there is movement toward inner layers;
        (3) affective exchange--movement to the central layers of personality; and
        (4) stable exchange, achieved in a few relationships.


      In research studies that use social penetration theory in their framework, its relation to individuals on a daily basis can be seen. For example, a longitudinal study of college roommates investigated developmental changes in social penetration processes. Another study investigated Japanese students at American universities and paired them with American student friends, examining their cross-cultural relationships. Exploring social penetration theory is of great importance to the study of communication. (Contains 2 figures and 17 references.) (NKA)


Information Manipulation TheoryBack to Top
  • Information Manipulation Theory, U. of Ky, part of the Persuasion theories page
    • A speaker purposefully and covertly violates one of the conversational maxims of quantity, quality, relation and manner with the intention of deceiving his/her listener.

  • Information Manipulation Theory, by McCornack, in Communication Monographs, Mar 1992 - abstract (below) in ERIC
    • Presents Information Manipulation Theory to describe the different ways that information can be manipulated in the production of deceptive messages. Suggests that deceptive messages covertly violate principles governing conversational exchanges regarding quantity, quality, manner, and relevance of information that should be presented. (SR)


Inoculation TheoryBack to Top
  • McGuire, W. "Resistance to persuasion conferred by active and passive prior refutation of the same and alternative counterarguments." Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 1961

  • Inoculation Theory, U. of Ky, part of the Persuasion theories page
    • Inoculation theory states that inoculation is used to describe the attribution of greater resistance to individuals. Or, the process of supplying information to receivers before the communication process takes place in hopes that the information would make the receiver more resistant.

  • Review of the Literature Regarding McGuire's Inoculation Theory: Early Formulations and Recent Applications, dissertation by Braley, 2001 - abstract (portion below) at ERIC
    • As originally formulated by William J. McGuire, Inoculation Theory provided a means of immunizing cultural truisms against the effects of persuasive attacks. Subsequent studies have demonstrated its efficacy in conferring resistance to issues of considerable complexity and controversy. The efficacy of the Inoculation Theory process has been widely attributed to its double-defense action: threat to beliefs motivates subjects to bolster those beliefs, while refutational preemption provides persons with a model for defending the same against attack. Although no research has been conducted to evaluate the utility of Inoculation Theory principles and procedures in considering immunity to matters of religious faith, its success with highly controversial, complex, and personal issues strongly suggests its potential.

  • Furthering Adjustment: An Application of Inoculation Theory in an Intercultural Context, paper by Briggs and Harwood, 1983 - abstract (below) in ERIC
    • A significant need exists for new and expanded training programs for people who must interact with different cultures. When people experience a new cultural environment, they are likely to experience conflict between their own cultural predispositions and the values, beliefs, and opinions of the host culture. A training program, the Cultural Communication Capsule, can aid in cross-cultural adaptation by improving interpersonal and social communication skills. Employing the metaphor of inoculation, the capsule is intended to immunize and inoculate against the erosion of self-image and self-confidence that results when people who do not understand a host culture's norms feel that their own cultural norms under attack. The program consists of discussion questions to stimulate new value orientation and uses exercises and simulation games organized around 10 elements:

      • (1) linguistic variables,
        (2) identity and status,
        (3) historical and political climates,
        (4) social values and structures,
        (5) economic trends,
        (6) technological language vocabularies,
        (7) nonverbal communication,
        (8) family/friends,
        (9) employment skills, and
        (10) company policy.


      The questions relate to cultural norms that underlie communication on-the-job specifically and the new cultural environment in general. (Sample questions for each of the 10 elements are provided.) (HOD)


Borden-Kopp ModelBack to Top
  • With formulas relating the canonical strategies of information warfare to Shannon's information theory

  • What is Information Warfare?, by Borden, Air & Space Power Chronicles, 1999
    • On the IW battlefield, there are only four tasks to be performed:
      • Data is:
        • Collected
        • Moved
        • Stored, and
        • Used to reduce uncertainty (perform Situation Assessment (SA))
    • There are only four types of Attack Measures possible against the four IW tasks. These are:
      • Degrade
      • Corrupt
      • Deny
      • Exploit

  • A Fundamental Paradigm of Infowar, by Kopp, 2000
    • If we are to apply a classification scheme to the most basic strategies in IW/IO, they can be divided into four simple categories:
      • A) denial of information (DoI), ie concealment and camouflage, or stealth.
      • B) deception and mimicry (D&M), ie the insertion of intentionally misleading information.
      • C) disruption & destruction (D&D), ie the insertion of information which produces a dysfunction inside the opponent's system; alternately the outright destruction of the system.
      • D) subversion (SUB), ie insertion of information which triggers a self destructive process in the opponent's target system.
      • [ed. author gives examples of each of the above for electronic combat in air warfare and for cyberwar]
    • Gibsonian cyberwar may have indeed captured the public imagination as the most critical aspect of the IW/IO paradigm, but if history teaches us anything, the use of new information distribution media to wage propaganda wars may be the area in which the greatest political and military impact is seen.

  • Shannon, Hypergames and Information Warfare, slides for lecture by Kopp, 2002
    • The Shannon model provides a powerful tool for capturing the interactions between adversaries and the information carrying channel.
    • The Shannon model cannot capture how the manipulation of the channel might be reflected in the behaviour of the adversaries.
    • Hypergames are games in which the respective adversaries may not be fully aware of the nature of the engagement they are participating in, or indeed that they are actually participating in an engagement.


Shannon's Information Theory(s)Back to Top
  • Information is that which reduces uncertainty (Shannon–Weaver definition)

  • search on internet

  • A Mathematical Theory of Communication by Claude E. Shannon - 1948 paper for Bell Labs

  • Shannon's theory(s) and theorems touched many aspects of information/communications - below is one application

  • Appendix 1. Notes on the Theil Index, to Manufacturing Wage Inequality in the Appalachian Region, report by Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), 2001
    • ... [Claude] Shannon's [information] theory [1948] was motivated by the need to measure the value of information. Shannon argued that the more unexpected an event is, the higher the yield of information it would produce. To formalize this idea, Shannon proposed to measure the information content of an event as a decreasing function of the probability of its occurrence. Adding some axiomatic principles, most importantly that independent events should yield information corresponding to the sum of the individual events' information, Shannon chose the logarithm of the inverse of the probability as the way to translate probabilities into information. The logarithm allows the decomposition of the multiplicative probabilities into additive information content.

      If we have a set of n events, one of which we are certain is going to occur, and each with a probability xi of occurring, then  and the expected information content is given by Shannon's measure:

      [1]                   

      The information content is zero when one of the events has probability 1; we draw no information from the occurrence of an event we are sure is going to happen. The information content is maximum when ; in this case H = log n . In other words, maximum information is derived from the occurrence of one event in a context of maximum uncertainty. To borrow from thermodynamics, maximum information is derived from a state of maximum disorder, or maximum entropy. This is the reason why entropy is used as a synonym of expected information. ....


Innovation Diffusion TheoryBack to Top
  • See also Innovation Adoption-Diffusion on Future Studies page

  • A Primer in Diffusion of Innovations Theory, by Clarke -- short and to the point, with the stages of innovation, characteristics of innovation, adopter categories, and roles in the innovation process
    • the stages through which a technological innovation passes
      • knowledge (exposure to its existence, and understanding of its functions);
      • persuasion (the forming of a favourable attitude to it);
      • decision (commitment to its adoption);
      • implementation (putting it to use); and
      • confirmation (reinforcement based on positive outcomes from it)


Metcalfe's Law, Amdahl's Law, and Moore's LawBack to Top
  • Metcalfe's Law
    • Metcalfe's Law - Wikipedia entry

    • "The power of a networked system grows exponentially with the number of devices in the network."
      --- from Evolution or Revolution: Tracing Outsourcing's Controversial Path, by Hamblen, in Chips, Jan 1998

    • Hudson Trend Analysis - Final Report to NOAA (local copy), 2002 - includes extensive section on information technologies, advances, and potential impacts
      • The Internet harnesses the power of Metcalf's Law which generates huge increases in the value of the network as the number of participants rises.
      • "Metcalf's Law" defines the potential for huge benefits of any type of network as more people participate -- whether through telephone, automobile or Internet. It states that the value of the network increased with the square of the number of participants. For example, if a network has 10 participants its value is 10 x 10 or 100 units. If the network instead has 1000 participants its value is 1000 x 1000 or 1 million units -- not 100 times the original 10 but 10,000 times as much.

  • Amdahl's Law
    • Amdahl's Law - Wikipedia entry
      • "... is used to find the maximum expected improvement to an overall system when only part of the system is improved. It is often used in parallel computing to predict the theoretical maximum speedup using multiple processors."
      • "Amdahl's law can be interpreted more technically, but in simplest terms it means that it is the algorithm that decides the speedup not the number of processors. You eventually reach a place where you can not parallelise the algorithm any more."
      • "Amdahl's law is a demonstration of the law of diminishing returns...."

  • Moore's Law


Clausewitz and Info OpsBack to Top
  • Clausewitz's Theory of War and Information Operations (local copy), by Darley, in Joint Force Quarterly, Jan 2006
    • It further suggests that IO and kinetic operations are inseparably linked, like strands of a DNA molecule in a gene, and in the same way have a dominant/recessive relationship (for example, one exercising dominance over the other depending on where the conflict falls on the continuum relative to the polar extremes). Thus, among the important issues it highlights, the theory shows the absolute need to refine both the specific political objectives of a campaign as well as their nature in order to determine whether the campaign is predominantly kinetic or informational. This suggests that neglecting consideration of the role of IO and its integration with kinetic operations imperils the entire campaign plan.

  • See also other Clausewitz references on the Military Theorists page of the Air War College Gateway to the Internet


Sun Tzu and Info OpsBack to Top

SensemakingBack to Top
  • see also knowledge management below

  • Sensemaking Symposium, Final Report (local copy), DODCCRP, 2001
    • A knowledge management workshop sponsored on 6-8 March 2001 by the Command and Control Research Program (CCRP) of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence (ASD(C3I)) identified sensemaking as an essential cognitive element of the military decisionmaking process (MDMP). As shown in Figure 1, participants of this earlier workshop viewed sensemaking as occurring within the cognitive domain while linking other critical MDMP elements across the information and physical domains of command and control.

    • Figure 5. Sensemaking Strategies Employed by Military Commanders
      • Situation Management
      • Recognition Primed
      • Deliberate
    • Figure 1. Sensemaking Conceptual Framework (click on image to enlarge)
      sensemaking diagram, click to enlarge


Persistent SurveillanceBack to Top

Knowledge ManagementBack to Top


Media Richness TheoryBack to Top

Steganography - hiding in plain sightBack to Top

Other Info Ops and Knowledge TheoryBack to Top

Other Theories - which have or might have application in info-opsBack to Top
  • see also ye olde brain, and its workings at Air War College Gateway to the Internet

  • Military Theory page at Air War College Gateway to the Internet

  • Social Balance Theory: Revisiting Heider’s Balance Theory for many agents (local copy), by Khanafiah and Situngkir, as posted by Los Alamos National Labs

  • Category Error
    • Category Error or Category Mistake, Wikipedia entry
      • A category mistake, or category error is a semantic or ontological error by which a property is ascribed to a thing that could not possibly have that property.
      • Another frequently occurring category mistake was revealed by John Searle in his "Chinese Room" argument. With the creation of the "chessmaster" computer, many were discussing whether a computer could actually understand language even if it could play chess and carry on a casual conversation. Searle argues that understanding language is not a capacity that a computer could possibly have. He compares it to a person in a room of Chinese boxes with Chinese symbols on them. He is given a manual on how to manipulate the symbols to send them out of the room (output). All the while new symbols are being sent in for him to manipulate (input). It is argued that in the same way that computer does not understand as it cannot understand.

  • Ashby's "Law of Requisite Variety"
    • The larger the variety of actions available to a control system, the larger the variety of perturbations it is able to compensate. [ed. - how might this apply to strategic communication or other info-ops elements?]

  • General Robert E. Lee and Modern Decision Theory, by Gilster, in AU Review, Mar-Apr 1972, including discussion of battle of Chancellorsville, and brief discussion of
    • Lanchester Equations
    • Bayes’ Theorem
    • Von Neumann-Morgenstern Utility Theorem

  • Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle
    • Every time a major power, even for the noblest of reasons, considers intervention, that power must confront the politico-military equivalent of Werner K. Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle: to inject yourself into the situation is to change the situation and, at least temporarily, will probably mean some liberal idealistic principles taking the proverbial back seat to realpolitik.
      --- from Lost in the Snow: the US Intervention in Siberia during the Russian Civil War, by Stamp, CSI, Leavenworth

    • No matter how well designed and statistically reliable our study may be, the fact that we are doing a study influences the data we collect. ... Heisenberg, an atomic physicist, posited we cannot measure anything without altering it or its environment and we cannot know the extent of our disruptions with certainty. Whenever we measure, we must consider the effect that the act of collecting data has on the data itself.
      --- from Chapter 9 of Executive Decision Making, from the Naval War College

  • The Basis Problem in Many-Worlds Theories (local copy), by Stapp, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 27 Feb 2002
  • additional work by Stapp

  • spiffy Explorations in Learning & Instruction: The Theory Into Practice (TIP) Database - a wealth of interlinked information on theories about learning, thinking, and communicating

  • spiffy Psychological theories/effects, summarized at Wikipedia - how might they apply in IO?

  • Psychological experiments/syndromes - are there IO analogies?
    • Milgram Obedience Experiment, aka Milgram Experiment, examined how far even well educated folks will go in obeying orders that may conflict with their consciences, with more than 60 percent willing to administer potentially fatal electrical shocks to "subjects" - just because they were told to by the professor running the "experiment"

    • Stanford Prison Experiment, classic examination of the psychology of imprisonment - changing behaviors of students cast in the roles of both prisoners and guards

    • Stockholm Syndrome, where hostages sometimes begin to identify with their captors

    • Learned Helplessness, when individuals come to believe their personal actions do not affect the outcome, so why try
      • an example of application is Chapter 8 Domestic Violence, 1999 National Victim Assistance Academy, Dept of Justice
        • ...People suffering from learned helplessness are more likely to choose behavioral responses that will have the highest predictability of an effect within the known, or familiar, situation; they avoid responses--like escape, for instance--that launch them into the unknown.... (Walker 1979).

  • Forensic principles/laws/theories - are there IO analogies?
    • Locard's Exchange Principle states that whenever two objects come into contact, a transfer of material will occur. - quote from "Trace Evidence Recovery Guidelines," in Forensic Science Communications, Oct 1999
      • [ed. - We've all seen this on CSI and other popular forensic TV shows. Might there be a similar principle regarding the exchange of information or influence when two communications efforts come into contact -- be it in the press, in cyberspace, or in the minds of individuals/groups?]

  • Management principles/laws/theories - are there IO analogies?
    • Parkinson's Law - after Cyril Northcote Parkinson (1909-1993), British historian
      • Any of several satirical observations propounded as economic laws, especially “Work expands to fill the time available for its completion.” [from The American Heritage® Dictionary]

    • Peter Principle - after Laurence Johnston Peter (1919-1990)
      • The theory that employees within an organization will advance to their highest level of competence and then be promoted to and remain at a level at which they are incompetent. [from The American Heritage® Dictionary]

  • Epistemology and Rosen’s Modeling Relation (local copy), by Dress, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Nov 1999
    • Rosen’s modeling relation is embedded in Popper’s three worlds to provide an heuristic tool for model building and a guide for thinking about complex systems.


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page updated/reviewed 23 Mar 2011