Making Sense of Human Dimension Warfighting Requirements

Army Leaders have never neglected the human dimension; but more than ever, it is vital that they understand it holistically… cognitively, physically, and neurologically. Each of these perspectives was represented by military, industry, and academic thought leaders at the Human Dimension: Cognitive Dominance Conference hosted by the Combined Arms Center. The theme of the conference was how to prepare the future Soldier to operate and thrive in conditions of ambiguity and chaos (conditions predicted by Army planners from 2025 onwards).

These conditions are challenging because they introduce a problem set characterized by new forms of warfare from cyber and space, as well as asymmetric threats from hybrid, non-State actors to narco-terrorists. Leveraging the Human Dimensions requires Soldiers and Leaders who are trained and trusted to act based on intent; educated to deal with wicked problems; and, experienced in diplomacy as well as tactics as we engage asymmetric threats where they thrive in urban environments. The strategic framework balances Realistic Training, Cognitive Dominance, and Institutional Agility for implementing Army Operational Concept 2025. The strategy results in a highly adaptive, professional force that is prepared to function effectively when faced with warfighting challenges.

The Army is in continuous transition and adapts to valuable lessons from the past decade of transformational warfare, where our adversaries have proven themselves to be adaptable in the techniques of irregular warfare. To counter these trends, the Army and other Services have adopted new methods and techniques that leverage our strengths. We believe we can achieve a distinct advantage in the Human Dimension. Advancing our understanding of how to achieve cognitive dominance affects our ability to exercise mission command, develop situational understanding, and improve individual and team performance. Benefits include: Performance in Joint-Interagency missions, fielding an agile cyber force, shaping the security environment, and developing future leaders. In the long-term, there are initiatives that have been pushed forward to establish an organizational culture and create the foundation for rapid prototyping and assessment of promising solutions for accelerating learning and development across the Human Dimension.

CPG views the warfighting challenges in Mission Command, Situational Understanding, Enhanced Training, and Leader Development as areas where its expertise in applied cognitive sciences would benefit the Army-wide effort to produce agile, adaptive, reflective thinking skills required to operate on the edge of chaos.


About the Author:


Cognitive Performance Group, LLC is a woman-owned small business with offices in Orlando, Florida, and Cleveland, Ohio. It was founded by Dr. Karol G. Ross, Jennifer K. Phillips, and William A. Ross. The three CPG Principals developed the concept for a company to support cognitive performance improvement in industry and government. (more...)

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