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Strategic Foresight and Warning: Navigating the Unknown

Helene Lavoix, Editor

Strategic Foresight and Warning: Navigating the Unknown


Helene Lavoix, Editor

CONTENTS
Foreword Kumar Ramakrishna Strategic Foresight and Warning: An Introduction Helene Lavoix Risks and Opportunities: The Role of Strategic Foresight and Warning Jan Eichstedt Cognitive Biases: What We Think Affects the World -The Case of Climate Change and Terrorism Marc Villot The future of food security: complexity and a systemic approach Ya-Yi Ong Strategic foresight and warning, the United States (U.S.) Department of Defense and counterinsugency in Iraq Justin M. Goldman Framing the Future for ASEAN Loh Woon Liang Typhoon Ketsana and the effects of cognitive biases in a governments strategic foresight and early warning capability Gayedelle V. Florendo Navigating Uncertainty: Understanding and Appreciating the Role of the Human Analyst B.C. Tan Abstracts Contributors About the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) About the Centre of Excellence for National Security (CENS) i 1 12 24

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FOREWORD
As part of the Master of Science programme at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, experienced political scientist specialised in Strategic Foresight and Warning Dr. Helene Lavoix was invited to teach a module on Strategic Foresight and Warning in the second quarter of 2010. As a result of excellent student and other feedback on the module, it was decided that the best student essays should be put together in an easily accessible format for the benefit of the wider Strategic Foresight and Warning community and interested readers in Singapore and elsewhere. Dr. Lavoix very kindly agreed to select and edit the best essays and write the Introduction. The short monograph you hold in your hands is the result of all this effort. This collection of essays is intended to showcase the potentially wide applicability of Strategic Foresight and Warning approaches and concepts. These provide a suite of useful analytical tools for busy analysts within and outside government. Such tools may well be timely as policy analysts everywhere face the demanding task of having to make sense of an often bewildering variety of oftenlinked transnational security threats, challenges and opportunities that comprise the complex milieu within which Singapore and other countries find themselves inextricably a part of. More experienced readers are requested to excuse whatever imperfections they may encounter in these essays. These are after all, written by post-graduate students, many of whom were encountering Strategic Foresight and Warning for the very first time. Finally, it is hoped that this monograph will help achieve the wider goal of encouraging greater policy interest in the increasingly important domain of Strategic Foresight and Warning. Happy reading! Kumar Ramakrishna Associate Professor and Head, Centre of Excellence for National Security S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies Nanyang Technological University November 2010

STRATEGIC FORESIGHT 1 INTRODUCTION


Helene Lavoix

AND

WARNING:

AN

Since Pearl Harbour, for most of recent history, societies have been taken by surprise more than once by events that inflicted harm and damage on them and threatened their objectives and strategies. However, since the end of the Cold War, starting with the 1997 Asian financial crisis, it seems that those surprises have not only been accumulating, but have also done so with an increased frequency, spreading from one domain to another, so that courses of actions easily backfire and are increasingly difficult to choose and implement. For example, societies faced 9/11 and the spread of terrorist attacks worldwide; the violent aftermath of the victory of the U.S.-led coalition in Iraq; the degradation of the situation in Afghanistan after a deceptive improvement; SARS, H1N1, H5N1, AIDS as a precursor, and the development of human resistance to antibiotic;2 an increase in and potential volatility of energy prices, Peak Oil,3 unclear and insufficiently considered potential Peak Coal and Peak Uranium;4 the global financial crisis since 2007 and its economic aftermath; the 2008 food crisis; accumulated and grinding localized crises prompted by extreme weather events such as Katrina; an increased pace of biodiversity loss; the 2010 BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill; volcanic ash paralyzing air traffic; a spreading and increasing fragilisation of the modern rational state throughout the world with all its wide-ranging potential consequences, exemplified by mammoth budget deficits, with Greece in 2009-2010 as one of the most recent illustrations, etc. We are thus faced with a rising global uncertainty, crises and doubts piling up and accelerating,

I would like to take the opportunity to thank first, all those intelligence and warning analysts and officers that I cannot name but who will recognize themselves if or when they read these lines, those exemplary men and women I have met these past years and that I shall hopefully continue to meet for all the knowledge and understanding they have shared with me, for the example they gave me and are offering to others in serving their respective nations, the world, their mission and their craft, often at whatever cost to their well being. They were essential in allowing me to embrace Strategic Foresight and Warning and in transmitting understanding to my students. Without them, this book could not have been written. I hope it does not disappoint them. Then, I would like to thank all the students who have contributed to this volume without sparing their time or effort, despite their graduation assignments and sometimes demanding jobs, as well as their classmates, for their enthusiasm, their persistence, their insights and most of the time their friendship. I have learned much with them and I wish them all great successes. 2 Bryan Walsh, Meat and Antibiotics: Getting Our Animals Off Drugs, Time.com, June 29, 2010, accessed 30 June 2010, http://ecocentric.blogs.time.com/2010/06/29/meat-and-antibiotics-gettingour-animals-off-drugs/?xid=rss-topstories#ixzz0sMN2QTeH; WHO, Antimicrobial resistance, Fact sheet N194, Revised January 2002. 3 Peak Oil is shorthand for the peaking of world conventional oil production. geologists know that at some future date, conventional oil supply will no longer be capable of satisfying world demand. At that point world conventional oil production will have peaked and begin to decline. Robert L. Hirsch, Roger Bezdek, & Robert Wendling, Peaking Of World Oil Production: Impacts, Mitigation, & Risk Management, report of the U.S. Department of Energy, February 2005, 7-8. It has been denied for a long time and its existence was again revised because of the economic crisis. 4 Among others, B. Kavalov and S. D. Peteves, The Future of Coal. Prepared for European Commission DG Joint Research Centre Institute for Energy (JRC IFE), February 2007; Michael Dittmar, The Future of Nuclear Energy: Facts and Fiction, Institute of Particle Physics, ETH, Zurich, August to November 2009, accessed June 28, 2010, http://arxiv.org/abs/0908.0627v1.

contributing to a feeling of disarray in the population and general increased tension among state actors and at systemic level. However, human societies and rulers entrusted with their security are prepared to face this situation. In general, living beings are equipped with more or less complex systems to warn about dangers and prevent harm, not only as individuals but also as groups and species. For example, plants that come under attack by insects produce higher levels of jasmonic acid and methyl jasmonate, which build up in the damaged parts of the plant. If ingested by the insect, the proteinase inhibitors can interfere with its digestive system and deter the insect from feeding.5 Furthermore, unharmed but close-by plants are warned of the danger by the spread of the volatile methyl jasmonate, which signals the attack and prompts them to produce defensive chemicals before they are attacked.6 Closer to us, since the dawn of mankind, human beings organized in societies have had to face for their survival the inevitable challenge, always renewed, that is to coordinate their activities with larger uncertain changes in their milieu, notably when their surroundings could be threatening.7 Throughout history, this activity has evolved, been assigned to specific types of actors and been given many names, one of the latest being strategic foresight and warning. What is strategic foresight and warning (SF&W)? It is an organized and systematic process to reduce uncertainty regarding the future.8 It aims to allow policy-makers and decision-makers to take decisions with sufficient lead-time to see those decisions implemented at best.9 It must thus help us in identifying the frontiers of plausibility within which changes in our surroundings are most likely to take place within a specific period of time, so that we can best coordinate our activities for our societys security, in the light of those coming alterations. SF&Ws objective is thus very concrete; it needs to address all those issues that belong to the mission of rulers qua rulers, i.e. to ensure the security of their

Simon Cotton, Methyl Jasmonate, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.chm.bris.ac.uk/motm/jasmine/jasminev.htm; Methyljasmonate.com, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.methyljasmonate.com/main.html; Jurgen Engelberth, Smelling the Danger and Getting Prepared: Volatile Signals as Priming Agents in Defense Response, Essay 13.8, A Companion to Plant Physiology, Fourth Edition by Lincoln Taiz and Eduardo Zeiger, accessed 28 June 2010, http://4e.plantphys.net/article.php?ch=13&id=378. 6 Ibid. and Edward E. Farmer & Clarence A. Ryan, Interplant communication: Airborne methyl jasmonate induces synthesis of proteinase inhibitors in plant leaves, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA (PNAS), Vol. 87, October 1990: 7713-7716,. 7 Norbert Elias, Time: An Essay (Oxford: Blackwell, 1992). 8 Thomas Fingar, Anticipating Opportunities: Using Intelligence to Shape the Future, and ''Myths, Fears, and Expectations, Payne Distinguished Lecture Series 2009 Reducing Uncertainty: Intelligence and National Security, Lecture 3 & 1, FSI Stanford, CISAC Lecture Series, October 21, 2009 & March 11, 2009, accessed June 28, 2010, http://iisdb.stanford.edu/evnts/5859/lecture_text.pdf. 9 Jack Davis, Strategic Warning: If Surprise is Inevitable, What Role for Analysis? Sherman Kent Center for Intelligence Analysis, Occasional Papers, Vol.2, Number 1, accessed June 28, 2010, https://www.cia.gov/library/kent-center-occasional-papers/vol2no1.htm; Cynthia M. Grabo, Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning, edited by Jan Goldman, (Lanham MD: University Press of America, May 2004); Kenneth Knight, Focused on foresight: An interview with the U.S.s national intelligence officer for warning, McKinsey Quarterly, September 2009, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.mckinseyquarterly.com/Public_Sector/Management/Focused_on_foresight_An_interview_ with_the_U.S._national_intelligence_officer_for_warning_2415.

polity, including the consideration of opportunities.10 SF&W is crucial because, without it, emerging but also latent issues or imminent problems could be missed, leading the various actors concerned to focus solely on already known and mastered problems the syndrome of fighting the last war hence allowing strategic surprises to occur and multiply. This is why in 2004, the government of Singapore introduced strategic anticipation as a whole-of-government approach then fully involving its scholarly and academic community imbued with a multinational multidisciplinary outlook.11 In this framework, the Center of Excellence for National Security (CENS) of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) at Nanyang Technology University, working closely with Singaporean national security agencies such as the National Security Coordination Secretariat within the Prime Ministers Office, has included approaches to the future and SF&W as one of its research programs on the assumption that resilience also encompasses robust visions of the future.12 Meanwhile, SF&W is taught as part of the RSIS Masters programme, notably its MSc in Strategic Studies.13 The essays published in this monograph represent a selection of the best papers written on the topic by post-graduate students, many of them with professional experience, during the academic year 2009-2010 and represent fresh insights and multinational, multidisciplinary and multi-background contributions to the field. This volume has two objectives. First, it is designed to show policy-makers, decision-makers and specialised analysts the very practical side of SF&W as it addresses issues of concern. Second, with a practitioners audience in mind, it is also organised according to an ideal type of SF&W process, exemplifying some of its steps, and reflecting upon them and their challenges through concrete case studies. In accordance with the concrete objective of SF&W providing policy-makers and decision-makers with sufficient lead-time for decision and action the volume presents instances of SF&W applied to specific issues. Throughout those essays, we shall look first, with Jan Eichstedt at definitions and perceptions of risks and opportunities in our contemporary societies, notably within the framework of National Security and at the crucial importance of SF&W for successful policy-making in the 21st century. Then, we Marc Villot will address climate change and terrorism; Ya-Yi Ong food security, Justin Goldman the second Iraq War, Woon Liang Loh the future of ASEAN, Gayedelle V. Florendo Typhoon Ketsana in the Philippines, and B.C. Tan human analytical shortcomings in warning systems. Second, as a process to reduce uncertainty regarding the future, SF&W is organised within those institutions that constitute the political authorities nexus, and composed of methods and tools that allow it to fulfil its mission in a more systematic way that could otherwise be haphazardly implemented throughout institutions by classical future-orientated analysis or estimates. SF&W has evolved from a long history that gave it its characteristics as much in terms of objectives, legitimacy, status, and processes, as in terms of
Knight, Focused on foresight. Peter Ho, The RAHS Story, in Edna Tan Hong, Ngoh & Hoo Tiang Boon, ed. Thinking about the Future, Strategic anticipation and RAHS, (Singapore: NSCC & RSIS, 2008), xi xix; Justin Zorn, Different lenses on the future: U.S. and Singapores approaches to strategic planning; in Aaron Low, ed. Decisions in a complex World: Building Foresight capabilities, (Singapore: RAHS, 2010), 3-7. 12 RSIS, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.rsis.edu.sg/ and CENS http://www.rsis.edu.sg/cens/. 13 http://www.rsis.edu.sg/grad/index.htm.
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methodologies. For the most recent part, since World War II, its development can be articulated around a double path and with three stages. First, warning came to be rather separated from Strategic Foresight throughout the stable context of the Cold War and the early post-Cold War era. Indeed, the stability of the times made us believe that Strategic Foresight was unnecessary as threats and dangers were thought to be known and unchanging in nature. Warning, besides activities related to natural hazards, was mainly part of the realms of the military and of intelligence and was known as Indications and Warning.14 After the breakup of Yugoslavia and the return of war on the international agenda, warning was rediscovered outside those circles by aid and development agencies and affiliated organizations, under the guise of Early Warning Systems.15 Meanwhile, strategic foresight or, more broadly, approaches to the future followed three, interacting tracks, which developed mainly during the Cold War. First, science, characterized as being descriptive, explanatory, and predictive, had a major role to play in terms of strategic foresight. Natural sciences have indeed assumed this role, with all the difficulties and caution implied by the fundamental discoveries of the late 19th and 20th centuries, such as the theory of relativity (general and special), systems theory, quantum physics and complexity theory.16 Social science, on the contrary, has tended to abandon and even loathe any predictive mission, notably from the advent of post-modernism, an exception being forecasting or quantitative techniques most often grounded in statistics, and applied in various disciplines. Then, from the 1960s onward, the Rand Corporation, an outgrowth of World War IIs American Rand project, dedicated to furthering and promoting scientific, educational, and charitable purposes for the public welfare and security of the United States set out to do pioneering work for anticipating and preparing for possible future developments in military and political affairs.17 It started using scenarios and created the Delphi polling technique. 18 It continues this work with its Frederick S. Pardee Center for Longer Range Global Policy and the Future Human Condition established in 2001. Finally, a new discipline, Futures Studies, was created at the end of the 1950s in France with Gaston Bergers La Prospective. It expanded in the 1960s through larger international movements composed of European (the World Futures Studies Federation) and American intellectuals (The World Future Society), with well-known

U.S. Department of Defense, Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, 2005; Arthur Hulnick, "Indications and Warning Intelligence for Homeland Security: Seeking a new Paradigm" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Studies Association, Hilton Hawaiian Village, Honolulu, Hawaii, Mar 05, 2005. 15 Helene Lavoix, Indicateurs et mthodologies de prvision des crises et conflits: Evaluation, (Indicators and Methodologies of crisis and conflict prevention : an evaluation) (Paris: AFD, December 2005). 16 Among others, Roland Omnes, Quantum Philosophy: Understanding and Interpreting Contemporary Science (Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 1999); Roger Lewin, Complexity: Life at the Edge of Chaos (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1999 2d ed.), Santa Fe Institute, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.santafe.edu/. 17 Rand Corporation, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.rand.org/about/history/. 18 Edward Cornish, The Search for Foresight: How THE FUTURIST Was Born, THE FUTURIST January-February 2007, p.52, for an explanation of scenarios and Delphi polling, see Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon, Ed., The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, 2009.

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developments such as The Club of Rome and its Limits to Growth.19 The intellectual foundation of these movements was rather pro-peace, non-quantitative, and emphasised human intent. Since then, futurists have developed many methodologies, which it would be impossible to detail in such short a space as its most recent peer-reviewed survey, Futures Research Methodology, counts no less than 39 chapters totalling about 1,300 pages.20 The most famous among them are the scenarios method and its variations. By and large, their initial outlook as well as their evolution compounded by a widespread belief in the End of History from the end of the Cold War onwards, led Futures Studies to serve mainly businesses with traditionally little involvement with issues of national security.21 Times have now changed and awareness has started dawning that a transition is taking place. Not only is the Cold War over, but the immediate post-Cold War world when only economics mattered and would solve everything is fading. War and traditional national security issues have been back on the international agenda since the mid-1990s and more particularly since 9/11. They can no longer be seen as separated from non-traditional national security issues. An example of this is the role of military-linked organisations such as the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) in raising environmental awareness.22 In this framework, we are all struggling to adapt our institutions, our thinking and our worldview(s) to a new world in the making still mixed with the late modern world, which is fast changing, where dangers converge, and where novel threats and hazards emerge. It is this transition and the related uncertainty that makes a complete process of SF&W even more crucial today, when all efforts of the past must be synthesised and brought together in the most efficient and concrete way, while inefficient or ill-adapted tools and methodologies must be discarded. This volume is a contribution to this effort as these essays are examples of various steps of a sketched, ideal process of SF&W. Eichstedt, after addressing the larger problem of the place of risk and opportunities in our contemporary societies, underlines the role of SF&W in prioritizing issues in a context of finite resources. Tackling the same challenge but from a different angle, Villot shows that the way policy-makers, the larger public and analysts decide to give precedence to one threat or danger over another here terrorism and climate change stems from those cognitive biases that affect us all at the individual as well as the collective levels, and against which the process of SF&W constantly fights through design and tools. In a similar way, Ong explains, with the example of food security, that cognitive biases on the one hand, and incapacity to tackle complexity, on the other, make us miss the emergence of new issues and dangers, potentially invalidating the way we prioritise issues of concern. Those three essays together are also crucial if one wants to understand the part of the SF&W process that is often called horizon scanning. The latter consists of identifying weak signals of emerging threats, and must be done permanently in
The Club of Rome, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.clubofrome.org/eng/home/; Paalumki, Heli, "Imagine a Good Day" Bertrand de Jouvenel's Idea of Possible Futures in the Context of Fictitious and Historical Narratives, Ennen & nyt, Vol. 1: The Papers of the Nordic Conference on the History of Ideas, Helsinki 2001. 20 Glenn and Gordon, Futures research methodology 21 Francis Fukuyama, The End of History and the Last Man (New York: Free Press, 1992). A brief look at most centers specialized in Futures studies will show that they are usually located within business schools or management departments of universities. Reading of many related journals will also show the heavy emphasis on business, management and related matters. 22 CNAS, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.cnas.org/
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conjunction with the prioritization of issues. Indeed, to be able to identify new dangers, one must first have a larger question in mind what is national security for us (Eichstedt) and then scan the environment for clues about novel dangers or those that are not yet taken into account.23 The sine qua non conditions to achieve horizon scanning is to have an open mind, thus being as free as possible from all biases (Villot and Ong); and to be able to tackle complexity by seeing patterns and linkages (Ong). With issues of concern identified and prioritised, we need now to outline the potential futures we shall face, within frontiers of plausibility for each issue. Indeed, it is only within this cone of plausibility that policy-makers will be able to choose, define, and design courses of actions.24 Specific methodologies of strategic foresight, initially mainly inherited from Rands work and from Futures Studies, are used for this purpose. Yet, considering the specificity of dealing with national security, notably in terms of clients (the policy-makers), actors involved (the state, the regime institutions, citizens, and other political actors), in terms of scope, complexity, and lethality of impact in case of failure, those initial tools and methodologies are being specifically reworked and tested. Meanwhile, new ones, increasingly incorporating science, are being created as the experimental part of the Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning (RAHS) program shows.25 Ongs case study perfectly illustrates this effort and why it is carried out by mapping the complexity of food security, while also stressing specific points for which further research should be endeavoured if we are to use a proper systemic and complex approach to the future. Goldmans article then exemplifies first the use and utility of simulations with the case of the American involvement in Iraq. Second, he revisits the too rarely considered method that is visionary foresight,26 while showing how it has been adapted to involve multiple actors and resulted in a revision of the Counterinsurgency (COIN) manual that changed the course of the war. Finally, Loh uses an explanation by futurist Sohail Inayatullah of the three existing types of understanding of the future and thus of the world out there,27 to creatively develop a novel methodology of strategic foresight specifically adapted to his chosen issue, Can the ASEAN community be built successfully by 2015? Once potential and plausible futures have been devised with various methodologies, one must explore the remaining possibilities for surprise, for example by using wild cards. According to James Dewar, this means identifying the potential for surprise by questioning the assumptions upon the grounding of foresight work as
Beat Habbegger, Horizon Scanning in Government: Concept, Country Experiences, and Models for Switzerland, Center for Security Studies (CSS), ETH Zurich, 2009, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.crn.ethz.ch/publications/crn_team/detail.cfm?id=96084; Gordon, Theodore J. and Glenn, Jerome C., Environmental Scanning, The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon, chapter 2, 1-19. 24 Charles Taylor, Alternative world scenarios for a new order of nations, U.S. Army War College, 1993, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/pdffiles/PUB245.pdf. 25 Edna Tan Hong, Ngoh & Hoo Tiang Boon, ed. Thinking about the Future, Strategic anticipation and RAHS, (Singapore: NSCC & RSIS, 2008); Horizon Scanning Center of the National Security Coordination Secretariat of Singapore - website: http://app.hsc.gov.sg/public/www/home.aspx. 26 Jerome C. Glenn, Genius Forecasting, Intuition, and Vision, The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon, Chapter 25. 27 Sohail Inayatullah, "From Who am I to When am I? Framing the Time and Shape of the Future," Futures 1993, 25(3): 235-253.
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well as imagining as many events as possible, however improbable, that could affect the issue as foreseen, selecting among those potential events based on criteria of plausibility and high impact, then devising the so-called wild cards scenarios before monitoring their possible happenstance through specifically built indicators.28 Loh, imaginatively, integrated fully wild card scenarios to his newly created methodology. Foresight products must then be delivered to clients, all those actors that must use them for the elaboration of policy, strategy, and strategic planning. This part, considering its complexity, is not dealt with in the framework of this monograph. Having now a fully developed foresight product, we move to the last step of the overall process, warning.29 Indeed, for the issue at hand, the previous stages have given us an understanding of the underlying dynamics as well as its plausible evolutions and outcomes. We may thus devise a coherent series of indicators grounded in a true complex understanding of the issue. Those indicators will be monitored to follow potential developments, with the collection of raw data or information then transformed into corresponding indications. When or if the issue evolves into warning problems for example if the issue is domestic instability, then we may have instability in countries x, y, and z as problems - those indicators will be specifically detailed for surveillance, i.e. adapted to each problem. If the indications then obtained so signal, then a warning, which must include assessment of impact, likelihood, and timeframe,30 facilitated by the previous steps, will be delivered to the client or customer, i.e. the policy-maker or decision-maker. Warning and many of its difficulties is illustrated and explained by Florendo in the case of a warning failure: typhoon Ketsana. Meanwhile, Tans essay studies the challenges linked to the indispensable human factor in warning analysis. Warning is an ultimate test for the whole SF&W process, because only the delivery of timely warnings can soundly allow policy-makers to accomplish their coordinating task. Warning ends the process of SF&W but also begins it, transforming it in a cycle. Indeed, as the indications collected represent the real world, they may imply a need to restart the whole cycle. Then, following a warning, policy-makers take actions (a non-action being considered as an action), which changes reality. This, again, necessitates revisiting the overall cycle. Strikingly, most of these essays stresses and underlines the vexing horizontal challenge of biases that runs throughout the whole process of SF&W and affects anyone, from the analyst to the officer to the policy-makers to whom foresight products and warning are delivered.31 Villot and Florendo focus on the effect of biases on prioritizing issues. Goldman showed the long and strenuous efforts needed to overcome biases. Tan tackles the bias challenge in detail, showing notably that no technology devised to replace human shortcomings may, bypass human analysis. Loh and Eichstedt set the example, albeit briefly, by accomplishing the difficult exercise of assessing their own biases, an effort that should be built upon and become a compulsory practice in the field.

James A. Dewar, The Importance of Wild Card Scenarios, Discussion Paper, RAND, accessed June 28, 2010, http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/cia/nic2020/dewar_nov6.pdf. 29 The words that belong to the specific Warning vocabulary will be italicised in the rest of the chapter. See Grabo, Anticipating Surprise for a detailed explanation of the Warning process and its challenges. 30 Grabo, Anticipating surprise. 31 Lawrence Woocher, The Effects of Cognitive Biases on Early Warning, Paper presented at the International Studies Association Annual Convention, 29 March 2008.

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Finally, each and every foresight product should be tested against reality when time comes, and scrutinised in exactly the same way as warning. Goldman provides us with a rare and precious example of this test in the case of the now declassified war-game, Desert Crossing. The aim of such exercises would not be to check that reality was exactly predicted, although, as Goldman exemplifies, it would seem that a fundamental inability to predict might have been overstated. It would be to identify where and why we have been successful or wrong so as to improve tools, methodologies, and processes. To submit foresight products to this harsh and unremitting test is an absolute imperative if SF&W is to win the trust of policymakers, finds its rightful and necessary place within polities institutions and thus meets its objective.

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Davis, Jack. Strategic Warning: If Surprise is Inevitable, What Role for Analysis? Sherman Kent Center for Intelligence Analysis, Occasional Papers. Vol.2, Number 1. Accessed 28 June, 2010. https://www.cia.gov/library/kent-centeroccasional-papers/vol2no1.htm. Dewar, James A. The Importance of Wild Card Scenarios. Discussion Paper, RAND. Accessed June 28, 2010. http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/cia/nic2020/dewar_nov6.pdf. Dittmar, Michael. The Future of Nuclear Energy: Facts and Fiction. Institute of Particle Physics, ETH, Zurich, August to November 2009. Accessed June 28, 2010. http://arxiv.org/abs/0908.0627v1. Edward Cornish. The Search for Foresight: How THE FUTURIST Was Born. THE FUTURIST January-February 2007. Elias, Norbert. Time: An Essay. Oxford: Blackwell, 1992. Engelberth, Jurgen. Smelling the Danger and Getting Prepared: Volatile Signals as Priming Agents in Defense Response. Essay 13.8, A Companion to Plant Physiology, Fourth Edition by Lincoln Taiz and Eduardo Zeiger. Accessed June 28, 2010. http://4e.plantphys.net/article.php?ch=13&id=378. Farmer, Edward E. & Clarence A. Ryan. Interplant communication: Airborne methyl jasmonate induces synthesis of proteinase inhibitors in plant leaves. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA (PNAS), Vol. 87, October 1990. 7713-7716. Fingar, Thomas. Anticipating Opportunities: Using Intelligence to Shape the Future, and ''Myths, Fears, and Expectations. Payne Distinguished Lecture Series 2009 Reducing Uncertainty: Intelligence and National Security, Lecture 3 & 1, FSI Stanford, CISAC Lecture Series, October 21, 2009 & March 11, 2009. Accessed June 28, 2010. http://iis-db.stanford.edu/evnts/5859/lecture_text.pdf Fukuyama, Francis. The End of History and the Last Man. New York: Free Press, 1992. Glenn, Jerome C. and Theodore J. Gordon, Ed. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology. Version 3.0. 2009. Glenn, Jerome C. Genius Forecasting, Intuition, and Vision, in The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon, 2009, Ch. 25. Gordon, Theodore J. and Glenn, Jerome C. Environmental Scanning, The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon, 2009, Ch. 2. Grabo, Cynthia M. Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning. Edited by Jan Goldman. Lanham MD: University Press of America, 2004. Habbegger, Beat. Horizon Scanning in Government: Concept, Country Experiences, and Models for Switzerland. Zurich: Center for Security Studies (CSS), ETH

Zurich, 2009. Accessed June 28, http://www.crn.ethz.ch/publications/crn_team/detail.cfm?id=96084

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Hirsch, Robert L. Roger Bezdek, & Robert Wendling, Peaking Of World Oil Production: Impacts, Mitigation, & Risk Management, report of the U.S. Department of Energy, February 2005. Ho, Peter. The RAHS Story, in Thinking about the Future, Strategic anticipation and RAHS edited by Edna Tan Hong, Ngoh & Hoo Tiang Boon. xi xix. Singapore: NSCC & RSIS, 2008. Hulnick, Arthur. "Indications and Warning Intelligence for Homeland Security: Seeking a new Paradigm." Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Studies Association, Hilton Hawaiian Village, Honolulu, Hawaii, March 05, 2005. Inayatullah, Sohail. "From Who am I to When am I? Framing the Time and Shape of the Future," Futures 1993, 25(3): 235-253. Kavalov B. and S. D. Peteves. The Future of Coal. Prepared for European Commission DG Joint Research Centre Institute for Energy (JRC IFE), February 2007. Knight, Kenneth. Focused on foresight: An interview with the U.S.s national intelligence officer for warning. McKinsey Quarterly, September 2009. Accessed June 28, 2010. http://www.mckinseyquarterly.com/Public_Sector/Management/Focused_on_f oresight_An_interview_with_the_U.S._national_intelligence_officer_for_warni ng_2415. Lavoix, Helene. Indicateurs et mthodologies de prvision des crises et conflits: Evaluation (Indicators and Methodologies of crisis and conflict prevention: an evaluation). Paris: AFD, December 2005. Accessed June 28, 2010. http://www.cdem.defense.gouv.fr/spip.php?article790. Lewin, Roger. Complexity: Life at the Edge of Chaos. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1999 2d ed. Low, Aaron. Ed. Decisions in a complex World: Building Foresight Capabilities. Singapore: RAHS, 2010. Omnes, Roland. Quantum Philosophy: Understanding and Interpreting Contemporary Science. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 1999. Paalumki, Heli. Imagine a Good Day" Bertrand de Jouvenel's Idea of Possible Futures in the Context of Fictitious and Historical Narratives. Ennen & Nyt, Vol. 1: The Papers of the Nordic Conference on the History of Ideas, Helsinki 2001. Tan Hong Ngoh, Edna & Hoo Tiang Boon. Ed. Thinking about the Future, Strategic anticipation and RAHS, Singapore: NSCC & RSIS, 2008. Taylor, Charles. Alternative world scenarios for a new order of nations. U.S. Army War College, 1993. U.S. Department of Defense. Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms. 2005.

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Walsh, Bryan. Meat and Antibiotics: Getting Our Animals Off Drugs. Time.com, June 29, 2010. Accessed June 30, 2010. http://ecocentric.blogs.time.com/2010/06/29/meat-and-antibiotics-getting-ouranimals-off-drugs/?xid=rss-topstories#ixzz0sMN2QTeH. WHO. Antimicrobial resistance. Fact sheet N194, Revised January 2002. Woocher, Lawrence. The Effects of Cognitive Biases on Early Warning. Paper presented at the International Studies Association Annual Convention, 29 March 2008. Zorn, Justin. Different lenses on the future: U.S. and Singapores approaches to strategic planning. In Decisions in a complex World: Building Foresight Capabilities, edited by Aaron Low. 3-16. Singapore: RAHS, 2010. Websites RSIS. Accessed June 30, 2010. http://www.rsis.edu.sg/. CENS, Accessed June 30, 2010. http://www.rsis.edu.sg/cens/. The Club of Rome, Accessed June 30, 2010. http://www.clubofrome.org/eng/home/. Santa Fe Institute, Accessed June 30, 2010. http://www.santafe.edu/. CNAS. Accessed June 30, 2010. http://www.cnas.org/. Methyljasmonate.com. Accessed June http://www.methyljasmonate.com/main.html. 30, 2010.

Rand Corporation. Accessed June 30, 2010. http://www.rand.org/about/history/.

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RISKS AND OPPORTUNITIES: THE ROLE OF STRATEGIC FORESIGHT AND WARNING


Jan Eichstedt An Uncertain World Doom and Gloom or Phoenix from the Ashes? On an average day, a quick scan of newspapers reveals the following: dangerous volcanic ash over Europe,1 the possibility of a nuclear Iran and natural hazards in China.2 It seems that we live in times full of risk. When this author attended the International Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Symposium 2010 in Singapore, he was under the impression that there was an emphasis on risks on the side of policy-makers and the organizations advising them. In turn, they seemed to neglect the other side of the same coin: opportunities! This paper will explore whether, in fact, there is an imbalance between the focus on risks and on opportunities when it comes to national policies by examining as empirical material a sample of U.S. Presidents State of the Union Addresses. If pre-eminence was given to risks, how could it be explained and how could Strategic Foresight and Warning (SF&W) restore the balance? Ideally, Strategic Foresight is a tool designed to reduce uncertainty with regard to various long-term developments that potentially have high impacts on the nation state. It allows decision-makers to formulate and implement policies with sufficient lead-time. Strategic Warning aims at the timely notification of decisionmakers about developments that affect the states security. Therefore, Strategic Foresight and Warning is the base for any kind of strategic planning. The first section of this essay will define terms and concepts of risks and opportunities, explain the methodology and present the empirical data. The second part will explain the findings, focusing on the risk society. The last section will elaborate on how SF&W could successfully broker between the notion of risks and of opportunities. Finally, this paper will conclude that strategic planning facilitated and aided by SF&W has to become a key component if we want to achieve successful policymaking in the 21st century. 1. Theoretical Framework This section will define key concepts and terms before explaining the methodology used in examining 16 State Of The Union Addresses by Presidents Bill Clinton (Democratic Party) and George W. Bush (Republican Party) between 19932008. Finally, the empirical data will be presented. 1.1 Definitions In contemporary discourse, terms of crises, risks, threats, dangers, and hazards are used synonymously. Often, this is confusing and, therefore, it is of utmost importance to gain a clear understanding about the vocabulary before analyzing the U.S. Presidents speeches. Consequently, this part of the essay will define the key terms used in this paper.

1 2

Dagny Ldemann, Wie gefhrlich ist die Aschewolke?, Die Zeit Online, 16 Apr. 2010. Xinhua News Agency, Moderate earthquake jolts Tibet, Peoples Daily, 17 Apr. 2010.

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The Oxford Dictionary defines risk as a situation involving exposure to danger or the possibility that something unpleasant or unwelcome might happen.3 The Dictionary of Psychology states that risk is a danger or a hazard or a situation involving these two. Furthermore, this situation is likely to cause loss or injury. In addition, the notion of agency is highlighted. In a given situation an action might result in an outcome that is uncertain. However, the probabilities of these outcomes are known or can be estimated.4 This author defines the term risk as a function of the probability and the impact of an event that is the occurrence of something that either will or will not happen. This definition has two sides. Probabilities are quantifiable and, therefore, should be objective. Probabilities require data that are often scientific in nature. However, scientific data is contestable and this author will come back to the challenges involving the policy-maker scientist nexus in the next section of this essay. In contrast, impacts have a subjective element to them, since they try to qualify the outcome of an event. Because impacts are subjective, even when the probability is known, some individuals will perceive an event as a risk and some will not. Consequently, risk is defined here as something that inherently implies an action or a belief. The term threat includes the notion of intention. Defined as a statement of an intention to inflict pain, injury, damage, or other hostile action as a retribution for something done or not done, a threat can also be a thing that is likely to cause damage or danger.5 Therefore, many things can be understood as being a threat because they are likely to cause damage or danger. However, threats become risks only when humans decide to use these things. A hazard is a biological, chemical, or physical agent that is reasonably likely to cause illness or injury if not properly controlled.6 Hazardous materials are a potential threat. Nuclear and chemical agents are likely to cause damage and danger if not dealt with properly but humans turn this threat into a risk by their own behaviour and actions. A danger is an element of a hazard, a threat and a risk. It can also be understood as a liability and exposure to harm or a thing that causes or is likely to cause harm. The opposite of a danger is safety or security.7 Defined as the freedom from risk or danger, security in the national context has occupied social groups since the beginning of mankind.8 In this regard, the meaning and definition of national security (NS) is essential to every state in order to have a good anchor for SF&W. We shall examine this aspect further in the next section. The main hypothesis of this essay is that political decision-makers are overly focused on mitigating risks, when they perceive that there is a crisis. The dictionary states that a crisis is a time of intense difficulty and danger.9 Crises inherently carry risks but also open the door for opportunities, defined as a time or set of circumstances that make it possible to do something.10 However, this definition lacks the positive connotation associated with opportunities. Hence opportunities is
The Oxford Dictionary of English, 2nd ed., s.v. risk Andrew M. Colman, ed., A Dictionary of Psychology, 3rd ed. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), s.v. risk 5 The Oxford Dictionary of English, 2nd ed., s.v. threat 6 David A. Bender, ed., A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), s.v. hazard 7 The Oxford Dictionary of English, 2nd ed., s.v. danger 8 The Oxford Dictionary of English, 2nd ed., s.v. security 9 The Oxford Dictionary of English, 2nd ed., s.v. crisis 10 The Oxford Dictionary of English, 2nd ed., s.v. opportunity
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understood here as the possibility to advance the well-being and prosperity of the nation and, in turn, its citizens. Therefore, notions of risks and opportunities in connection to NS are always population centric in liberal democracies. It is understood that there are many more definitions for all these terms and concepts discussed in the academic world.11 However, of utmost importance for this essay is the emphasis that risks are socially constructed by actions and behaviours of actors that can be politicians, social groups or individuals. While the overall connotation is negative, risks also open the door for opportunities. Therefore, risk and opportunities are two sides of the same coin. 1.2 Methodology With some exceptions, the President of the United States of America addresses the State of the Union in January or February every year since its inception in 1790. The President comments on accomplishments made since his last State of the Union Address (SOUA) and looks ahead to the next year in regard to major policy issues.12 The SOUAs were chosen to test the hypothesis for two reasons. First, the United States is still the dominant world power, with American policies driving developments around the world. Second, the data was readily available. The method used was a text search tool looking for the terms of risk and opportunity in the SOUAs. However, this method proved to be insufficient. On a regular basis the presidents spoke of threats, dangers, crises or security. This might have as much to do with the synonymous usage of the above stated terms as with the fact that the recurrence of the same noun is not perceived as good style in language. As explained previously dangers and threats are integral parts of risks, which in turn are part of crises. Therefore, these terms were bundled, keeping risk as the overreaching concept. Despite the fact that the wider scope of the text search now includes all these words, the methodology was still not satisfying. Indeed, the terms used had a qualitative element that the quantitative method was not able sufficiently to unveil. For example, in 1995, President Clinton spoke in vague terms about security at home and abroad.13 Three years later, he stated that the U.S. had the opportunity to become a closer community because of economic growth.14 In his 2005 speech, President Bush spoke about the voters that took the risk to take to the polls in a recent Iraqi election.15 Obviously, the term risk had no linkage to Bushs domestic constituents; it lacked relevance to U.S. citizens. Therefore, all 16 SOUAs were analyzed for the usage of the above stated terms in regard to the research question. One has to acknowledge that this way of conducting the research was prone to misunderstandings and personal biases. The author had to interpret what
A quick check on Oxford Reference Online (http://www.oxfordreference.com/pub/views/home.html) produces different definitions according to different dictionaries, i.e. A Dictionary of Sports Studies, The New Oxford Companion to Law etc. This clearly underlines the fact that the entire concept of risk and risk mitigation is highly contested. 12 See State of the Union Addresses of the Presidents of the United States The American Presidency Project, accessed April 18, 2010, http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/sou.php. 13 William J. Clinton, Address Before a Joint Session of Congress on Administration Goals, 24 Jan. 1995, accessed April 11, 2010, http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=51634. 14 William J. Clinton, Address Before a Joint Session of Congress on Administration Goals, 27 Jan. 1998, accessed April 11, 2010, http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/print.php?pid=56280. 15 George W. Bush, Address Before a Joint Session of Congress on Administration Goals, 2 Feb. 2005, accessed April 11, 2010, http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/print.php?pid=58746.
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the presidents had intended to say. Furthermore, his personal understanding of risk clearly influenced the research. Nevertheless, the findings were persuasive. 1.3 Data From 1992 until 2008 the term risk was mentioned 20 times in SOUAs. On 11 times it referred to risk in regard to the concept of NS, understood as the physical survival of the state, and nine times in regard to economic risks. The term threat was used a total of 61 times. Fifty-eight of those phrases were aimed to highlight a threat to NS. Only three times was a threat to the economy conceptualized.

The word crisis in connection to the economy was used 11 times while it was used in relation to NS only thrice. Clinton and Bush both liked to emphasize dangers, mentioning it 51 times: 43 times in regard to NS and eight times in connection with the economy. The usage of the terms risk, threat, crisis, and danger added up to a total of 146 times. However, the term security was used heavily: 100 times in regard to NS, 111 times referring to welfare (Social Security, Medicare etc.) and 15 times in connection to the economy, totalling 226 times. The number of references to terms suggesting risks is an astounding total of 372. In contrast, references to the term opportunity were made only 79 times (72 in regard to the economy and only seven times in reference to NS).

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Hence, the initial research question holds ground. As proven by the analysis of selected SOUAs, there was an overemphasis on the notion of risk and a neglect of possible opportunities. The question remains why this was the case. 2. The Risk Society The grey eminence of strategic intelligence, Sherman Kent, once argued that politicians have to strike a balance between policies that deal with risks and policies that seize opportunities.16 Obviously, the findings of the previous section clearly indicate that at least two presidents did not read his book. Why are politicians overly focused on risks in their public speeches and, consequently, in their policies? This section will explore possible factors and explanations that form the basis for arguments on how SF&W could aid in altering this one-sided equation. Some scholars bluntly state that, while there has always been risk to life, the nature of risk has changed and our world has become increasingly uncertain.17 This explanation is too shallow. Accordingly, the concept of national security, with a focus on its development and scholarly debate, will be examined first. Second, the nexus of politics and science in regard to risk assessment and mitigation will be critically evaluated. Third, the role of the society and public opinion in with regard to what constitutes a socially accepted risk has to be elaborated upon. The question of how a nation state defines the concept of NS is of paramount importance for understanding risks and opportunities. Furthermore, the concept of NS enables SF&W to scan the horizon in a timely manner for relevant weak signals of emerging risks and opportunities. Traditionally, NS has been understood as the physical survival of the state. The focus was on inter-state conflicts and the business of war. One of the great thinkers, Swiss born Jean-Jacques Rousseau, pointed out that rulers and their population commit themselves to a social contract. In this contract, citizens are willing to give up some of their freedoms in return for security. Furthermore, Rousseau stated that societies might actually fall back into chaos if politicians violate the social contract by not dealing with crises in a credible way.18 German sociologist Ulrich Beck was the first to introduce the term risk into social theory. In his groundbreaking book Risk Society: Towards a New Modernity (1992), Beck distinguished between plagues, natural disasters and famines that carry a notion of fate that were beyond human control in the pre-industrial period on the one hand, and risks that could be mitigated and controlled as a result of modernization on the other. He reasoned that risk assessment developed along the lines of modernity, resulting in insurances against illnesses and unemployment for example. However, the end of the Second World War confronted societies with uninsurable risks that were a result of modernization themselves. Therefore, Beck and Giddens concluded that social actors are forced to deal with systematically produced, unintended social and environmental consequences as products of industrialization.19 This understanding has implications for the definition of NS.
Sherman Kent, Strategic Intelligence For American World Policy (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1949), 4-5. 17 Jane Franklin, Introduction, The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin (Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998), 1. 18 Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The Social Contract (Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 1994), 55-68. 19 John Scott and Gordon Marshall, eds., A Dictionary of Sociology (Oxford University Press, 2009), s.v. risk
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Scholars like Ulmann and Buzan widened this concept, including issues into its definition that might generate an impact on the military realm.20 Examples are migration or climate change. This resulted in the establishment of the Copenhagen School of International Relations that tried to explain the securitization of issues that had no connection to the traditional understanding of NS. Furthermore, the late 1990s saw the deepeners who stated that security is defined as a human condition.21 Critics argued that these definitions opened the floodgates for securitizing a whole range of issues. They stated that governments had an interest in doing so. If policy-makers were to declare something as of vital importance to NS, the rules of the political game would change to favour the executive.22 The findings in section 1.3 seem to underline these arguments. Both presidents mentioned security 226 times. However, while Clinton focused especially on social security (60 references), Bush overemphasized national security (64 references) in a traditional context. This can be traced to the flavour of the day: Clinton focused on health care reform and Bush became a wartime president. However, the securitization of an act only works when the public believes in the securitizing move.23 While Clinton did not pass his health care reform, partly because of public resentments, Bush signed the Patriot Act into law. Under him there was a consensus within the population and legislative about the threat posed by international terrorism. In conclusion, the definition of NS is a vital step for a nation state. In regard to this essay, a concept for NS will enable SF&W to identify risks and opportunities by scanning the horizon for relevant weak signals. In order to examine the nexus between politics and science, we remember the definition of the term risk from section 1.1. The probability of an event is an important factor in determining risk. As stated, probabilities, in theory, should be quantifiable and, therefore, objective. However, in reality they are not. In this regard the role of science has to be critically evaluated. On issues such as Mad Cow Disease24 or the flu virus H1N125 scientists are not able to quantify the probabilities of occurrence. They even differ and contradict each others findings on the very same issue.26 Now scientists do not make a claim that an activity is risky or not. A variety of social groups and actors, among them political decision-makers, do. However, politicians rely on scientific expertise to correctly estimate the outcome of an issue to make a decision in the form of policy. Thus, it seems that todays science might be of less value than expected and that scientists might actually be part of the overall problem that leads to an overemphasis of risks.27 Finally, this essay briefly examines the role of society. Nowadays, everyone seems to be mitigating risks. We drink red wine to reduce the probability of a certain
Peter Hough, Understanding Global Security, 2nd ed. (Abingdon, New York: Routledge, 2008), 7. Ibid., 9-10. 22 Barry Buzan, Ole Waever, and Jaap de Wilde, Security A New Framework For Analysis (Boulder, London: Lynne Rienner Publishers, Inc., 1998), 24-5. 23 Ibid. 24 Ulrich Beck, Politics of Risk Society, The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin (Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998), 7. 25 Shannon Brownlee and Jeanne Lenzer, Shots in the Dark, The Atlantic Vol. 304, No. 4 (2009): 4454. 26 Anthony Giddens, Risk Society: the Context of British Politics, The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin (Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998), 24. 27 John Durant, Once the Men in White Coats Held the Promise of a Better Future, The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin (Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998), 72.
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cancer. We do not eat French Fries for the fear of acryl amide. The list goes on and on. This is what scholar Grove-White calls the Risk Society.28 To cite the examples of BSE and the Y2K bug, public opinion forced politicians to act and commit valuable resources to mitigate these threats ad hoc. Besides the role of the 24/7 media cycle, policy-makers have to broker the interests of different social groups, when it comes to risk mitigation. The impact of an event might be perceived differently according to the actor. While many people stopped eating British beef and French Fries during the late 1990s, others, like this author, continued enjoying medium-rare steaks from English cattle, until the import was banned, with a generous portion of fried potato sticks. However, societies expect politicians to be on top of issues that are potentially risky although, initially, they tend not to know or agree on what those risks are.29 The French contaminated blood scandal is a case in point. In Frances biggest public health scandal, the Centre National de Transfusion Sanguine knowingly distributed blood contaminated with HIV to about 4000 people.30 Rightly, the French public demanded action to be taken because they felt that the social contract had been violated. However, this only happened after the issue was made public and despite the fact that only a minuscule portion of the population had been affected. In regard to the SOUAs it would be interesting to widen the scope of the analysis in order to include speeches from another era. Did presidents during the last centuries use the above stated terms with more, less or the same frequency and what would that tell us about their perception of risk and that of their population? The factors mentioned are only a small sample. There are many more: personal biases, political interests, and lobby groups for instance. Furthermore, the political system in liberal democracies seems to favour reactive short-term measures over pro-active long-term solutions. However, one thing seems to be clear. Except for some natural hazards, risks are man made and socially constructed.31 One should keep this in mind because the very act of mitigating an accepted and publicly agreed upon risk, might create another one down the road.32 In addition, our inability to understand the consequences of our acts in complex environments adds to the misery. This is where SF&W comes in. How it will help to communicate and mitigate risks while promoting opportunities will be the object of discussion in the next section. 3. The Role of Strategic Foresight The data presented previously implies that the American society seems to face many issues that are wide in scope and can cause damage, harm, loss, or injury. Therefore, it seems that the task of risk mitigation becomes overly important. Obviously, mitigating against all kinds of risks requires a lot of resources in times when government funding is in dire straits. Nevertheless, politicians have to act because of the social contract that is so important for the cohesion of society. This
Robin Grove-White, Risk Society, Politics and BSE, The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin (Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998), 50. 29 Barry Buzan, People, States and Fear (New York, London, Toronto: Harvester Wheatsheaf, 1991), 365. 30 BBC Online Network, World: Europe Blood scandal ministers walk free, BBC News, 9 Mar. 1999. 31 Ortwin Renn, Concepts of Risk: A Classification, Social Theories of Risk, eds. Sheldon Krismky, Dominic Golding (Westport: Praeger, 1992), 55. 32 Nick Pidgeon, Roger E. Kasperson, and Paul Slovic, Introduction, The Social Amplification of Risk, eds. Nick Pidgeon, Roger E. Kasperson, Paul Slovic (Cambridge, New York, Melbourne: Cambridge University Press, 2003), 6, 8.
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section will briefly make the case why governments should create a SF&W program, and highlight one possible model for such an exercise discussed within the academic world. Then the tasks and criteria for success will be defined for foresight to make the point that it is important not only to focus on risks but on opportunities as well. Considering governments long-term responsibilities for the security and prosperity of their nations, the need for strategic planning becomes clear. In this regard, the importance of getting the foundation right cannot be overstated. Resources are scarce. As a result, nation states cannot afford to plan for every contingency. They need a screening device that assists them to be proactive rather than reactive.33 This device has to be SF&W. It should be the initial step in an overall multi-agency process for strategic planning and constitute the base for all successive steps. Furthermore, it should be able to better manage socially constructed risks and emphasize opportunity-taking more than in the past. In 2004 a group of students proposed a model for a National Council for Strategic Planning (CSP) within the political system of the U.S. with direct links to the government and departments, as well as to Congress and other stakeholders like think tanks and non-governmental organizations (NGO). SF&W was an integral part in CSP. Several foresight task forces would scan for weak signals and future trends. Once a major trend had been anticipated and identified, the cycle of strategic planning could be initiated. For the students, to achieve a successful foresight exercise, the key was access to decision-makers and the possibility to influence the political process.34 In the same way scholars Calof and Smith concluded that successful strategic foresight programs have to generate an impact on policy.35 While the students overall focus was on strategic planning, this essay will concentrate only on the role of SF&W and its importance as the anchor for government policies. Singapores Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning (RAHS) office scans for weak signals that might be of importance to the government.36 However, how are they to know which signals might be important and relevant when, as stated, risks are socially constructed mainly outside of government? The answer cannot simply be: It is important if it is affecting national security! This is only sufficient when NS is understood in a traditional way. However, the need for foresight increases if one uses the wider and deeper definitions. To solve this dilemma, it is proposed that SF&W has to anticipate the impact and the relevance of weak signals in regard to their cultural, societal, and political milieu. The decision of How safe is safe enough? is for the political decision-maker. But in order for him to make this decision, to formulate policies and to commit resources, he needs an estimation of the relevance and impact of future trends onto his society. Trying to securitize every issue and trend will result in a waste of resources. However, SF&W has to do a delicate balancing act. On the one hand, it has to anticipate trends that can lead to crises full of risks but also of opportunities. On the other hand, it must also anticipate if society understands the severity of this trend or if the securitization of this issue could potentially fail. A case in point is that of H1N1 in Germany. The German government, aided by scientists around the world, anticipated the impact of
Pidgeon, Kasperson, and Slovic, Introduction, 9. Leon Fuerth, Creation of a Commission on Strategic Planning, Futures Research Quarterly Vol. 20, No. 4 (2004): 5-32. 35 Jonathan Calof and Jack E. Smith, Critical success factors for government-led foresight, Science and Public Policy Vol. 37, No. 1 (2010): 31. 36 Pidgeon, Kaspersen, and Slovic, Introduction, 9.
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swine flu as potentially high, resulting in a variety of negative ripple effects for German society. As a result, a massive advertising campaign for vaccinations was started and several million shots were ordered. However, the population did not believe in the securitizing move. It refused to get vaccinated and when swine flu turned out to be not so deadly after all, 30 millions shots were left over and had to be re-sold on the market, resulting in a huge loss for public treasuries.37 Currently, the discussion is ongoing on whether or not incorrect scientific data and lobbying led the government to overreact or citizens did not understand its severity. Considering how low the fatality rate has been, the first explanation is more persuasive. The dilemma is that swine flu could very well have been a worldwide pandemic. In this case the German government could have been accused of not taking the issue seriously enough. This dynamic can be applied for many more issues, the most prominent being climate change. To this day some governments proclaim climate change to be the biggest threat with impacts on traditional and non-traditional security. But some governments challenge this assumption. The same ambiguity can be found within any social group. Therefore, SF&W has to anticipate and monitor all trends and understand their trajectory, using all available data. If findings are inconclusive, this very fact has to be noted. Furthermore, SF&W has to anticipate if the securitization of any given trend will be successful within the wider context of society. If SF&W anticipates that a certain trend will have a high impact with regard to risks or opportunities but finds that the population will not follow or understand the securitizing move, it has to articulate this assessment to policy-makers. It is the decision-makers responsibility to communicate that a trend is of strategic importance for the country and act accordingly. Another critical factor for success will be the anticipation of policy impacts. How does a certain measure shape the trajectory of a trend? What are the consequences? Human beings are generally not very good at thinking strategically in complex systems. Developmental aid in Africa and the huge debt of nation states can attest to this very fact.38 The main point is that opportunities could be more easily highlighted if impacts of policy initiatives could be correctly estimated. When German Chancellor Gerhard Schrder was elected in 1998, he instantly realized that the German industry was not suited for a globalized economy. He also understood that this risk to German heavy industry was a chance for renewable energy technologies to be developed because of certain global trends like scarcity of fossil fuels and an emphasis on climate change. Accordingly, he acted upon this opportunity and promoted clean technology through subsidies and legislation although the population did not understand the trajectory of this trend at the time.39 Today, Germany is one of the leading clean technology producing countries. SF&W should highlight such developments and emphasize opportunities. In conclusion, strategic foresight is an important government function for this century. In order to be successful, it has to have access to stakeholders and has to generate estimation of policy impacts. Furthermore, it has to assess the relevance of weak signals and anticipate the long-term consequences of recommendations and policies. Moreover, it should promote opportunities to strike a balance.
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Impfstoffverkauf gescheitert, Die Zeit Online, 7 May 2010. Dietrich Drner, Die Logik des Milingens. Strategisches Denken in komplexen Situationen, 8th ed. (Hamburg: rororo, 2003). 39 Gerhard Schrder, Entscheidungen: Mein Leben in der Politik (Berlin: Ullstein Verlag, 2007).

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Conclusion This essay sought to explore the notion that political decision-makers are occupied with mitigating risks while neglecting opportunities. In the first part, a sample of SOUAs was quantitatively and qualitatively analyzed. The findings underlined the validity of the research question. The next part looked at possible explanations for the data, concluding that a wide variety of factors within the risk society result in the overemphasis on risk mitigation. The last part looked at the role and tasks of strategic foresight exercises in the policy realm and the criteria for success. In summary, the overemphasis on risk leads to an inefficient allocation of scarce resources with a focus on short-term considerations. However, todays world is more complex and interconnected. Therefore, policies have to be comprehensive, robust, and flexible. The focus should be on nodes connecting different issues. These nodes need to be identified. Trends affecting them need to be anticipated and the underlying drivers and trajectories need to be understood. This forms the basis for successful strategic planning. SF&W should be able to estimate all these factors and shape outcomes by offering recommendations on which future trends to focus on. These recommendations should emphasize opportunities true to the saying: Nothing ventured, nothing gained!

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Bibliography BBC Online Network. World: Europe Blood scandal ministers walk free. BBC News, March 9, 1999. Beck, Ulrich. Politics of Risk Society. The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin. Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998. Bender, David A., ed. A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009. Brownlee, Shannon and Jeanne Lenzer. Shots in the Dark. The Atlantic Vol. 304, No. 4, (2009): 44-54. Bush, George W. Address Before a Joint Session of Congress on Administration Goals. 2 Feb. 2005. Accessed April 11, 2010. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/print.php?pid=58746 Buzan, Barry. People, States and Fear. New York, London, Toronto: Harvester Wheatsheaf, 1991. Buzan, Barry, Ole Waever, and Jaap de Wilde. Security A New Framework Analysis. Boulder, London: Lynne Rienner Publishers, Inc., 1998. For

Calof, Jonathan and Jack E. Smith. Critical success factors for government-led foresight. Science and Public Policy Vol. 37, No. 1, (2010): 31-40. Clinton, William J. Address Before a Joint Session of Congress on Administration Goals. January 27, 1998. Accessed April 11, 2010. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/print.php?pid=56280. Address Before a Joint Session of Congress on Administration Goals. January 24, 1995. Accessed April 11, 2010. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=51634. Coleman, Andrew M., ed. A Dictionary of Psychology, 3rd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009. Drner, Dietrich. Die Logik des Milingens. Strategisches Denken in komplexen Situationen, 8th ed. Hamburg: rororo, 2003. Durant, John. Once the Men in White Coats Held the Promise of a Better Future. The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin. Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998. Durodie, Bill. Risk Perception and Analysis. Paper presented at LT 2, School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. October 7, 2009. Franklin, Jane. Introduction. The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin. Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998. Fuerth, Leon. Creation of a Commission on Strategic Planning. Futures Research Quarterly Vol. 20, No. 4, (2004): 5-32. Giddens, Anthony. Risk Society: the Context of British Politics. The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin. Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998. Grove-White, Robin. Risk Society, Politics and BSE. The Politics of Risk Society, ed. Jane Franklin. Cambridge, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 1998.

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Hough, Peter. Understanding Global Security. 2nd ed. Abingdon, New York: Routledge, 2008. Kent, Sherman. Strategic Intelligence For American World Policy. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1949. Ldemann, Dagny. Wie gefhrlich ist die Aschewolke? Die Zeit Online. April 16, 2010. McKinley, James C. Jr. Fleeing Drug Violence, Mexicans Pour into U.S. New York Times. April 18, 2010. Pidgeon, Nick, Roger E. Kasperson, and Paul Slovic. Introduction. The Social Amplification of Risk, eds. Nick Pidgeon, Roger E. Kasperson, Paul Slovic. Cambridge, New York, Melbourne: Cambridge University Press, 2003. Renn, Ortwin. Concepts of Risk: A Classification. Social Theories of Risk, eds. Sheldon Krismky, Dominic Golding. Westport: Praeger, 1992. Rousseau, Jean-Jacques. The Social Contract. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 1994. Sanger, David E. and Thom Shanker. Gates Says U.S. Lacks Policy to Curb Irans Nuclear Drive. New York Times. April 17, 2010. Schrder, Gerhard. Entscheidungen: Mein Leben in der Politik. Berlin: Ullstein Verlag, 2007. Scott, John and Gordon Marshall, eds. A Dictionary of Sociology. Oxford University Press, 2009. State of the Union Addresses of the Presidents of the United States. University of California at Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. 2010. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/sou.php. Xinhua News Agency. Moderate earthquake jolts Tibet. Peoples Daily. April 17, 2010.

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COGNITIVE BIASES: WHAT WE THINK AFFECTS THE WORLD -THE CASE OF CLIMATE CHANGE AND TERRORISM
Marc Villot Risk assessment is always a controversial issue in which various actors debate the plausibility or the reality that the threat is real. In these debates some risks and threats become national priorities while others are deemed less important. In an ideal world, this assessment would be the product of rational judgement and analysis. Yet this is not always the way the human mind operates. In this essay we shall be looking at two main threats of the modern age: terrorism and climate change. Both have experts arguing that the risks are over or understated, forming asymmetrical positions on the issues. The problem is further expanded exacerbated by our own interpretation of the available information and forecasts. Owing to the uncertainty about the effects and risks of climate change and terrorism, our own biases either play up or dampen the plausible outcomes. This is not simply the case for the less-informed public; the problem of cognitive biases is as crucial to the devising of forecasts by scientists and experts as it is for policy-makers who must make choices on whether the potential risks demand immediate action. The importance of cognitive bias in this debate demonstrates how decision-makers and the public do not view an issue as a vital national security issue. This stance is found in the United States of America and to a lesser extent within European states, which illustrates the impact of biases and belief systems on the issue of climate change. Why, therefore, is terrorism perceived as a more plausible threat than climate change? Why does terrorism allow governments to implement restrictive measures, such as the tightening of airport security, whereas there is no political will or public support for actions against climate change? To answer these questions, this paper argues that terrorism, unlike climate change, is perceived as a major risk due to the cognitive process by which we define threats. In order to assess the influence of cognitive biases, this paper will compare public perceptions of terrorism and climate change and those of policy-makers and elucidate why one is deemed a national priority in the U.S. and in some parts of Europe whereas the other is identified as less important. This essay will be divided into three sections. Firstly, it will define climate change, terrorism, and cognitive biases. Secondly, it will assess the impact of cognitive biases on risk assessment made by experts, decision-makers, and the public. It will illustrate these impacts with examples from climate change and terrorism. Finally, this essay will compare the reactions to terrorism and climate change both of the public at large and of policy-maker, thereby addressing the problem of threats prioritization. In the process, it will seek to illustrate how cognitive biases influence our judgement, pushing certain issues to a higher priority than we would otherwise do rationally. Before developing the issue at hand, a definition of the terms is in order. Though climate change is a controversial issue, one may define it as the modification of the Earths environment through the activities of men. In other words, Man has a profound impact on his environment, to the extent that scientists now believe that he

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is bringing along an irreversible change.1 Though consensus is slowly growing that Man is causing climate change, there is little agreement on what this evolution of our natural world will look like and whether it will prove problematic for future generations.2 To illustrate, there are several scenarios put forward by the scientific community that argue that climate change will be a slow process, giving our societies the time to adapt to new environmental realities.3 However, others argue for caution and maintain that abrupt climate change is a very real possibility, that if ignored could seriously undermine our ability to deal with the associated risks.4 Such scholars argue that though these scenarios have a low probability, they are still a very real possibility, and with our current stance on the issue we would be caught by surprise.5 On the other side of the spectrum, terrorism, which is also a low likelihood event with equally important consequences, is placed very high on our list of risk priorities.6 We fear terrorism in a way we do not fear climate change. The reasons for this asymmetrical evaluation of risks lie in how our brain deals with risks and uncertainties. There is a widespread and ongoing debate over what terrorism is, without any real agreement of what defines a terrorist or an act of terrorism. It is one of the few instances in which most people can agree that certain acts constitute terrorism without being able to properly define the term. For simplicitys sake this essay will use the definition of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations that, in Title 22, defines terrorism as premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by sub-national groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence an audience.7 Although this definition is not perfect, the scope of these problems exceeds the limits of this paper. In order to process complex information and uncertainties, our brain takes mental shortcuts and rules of thumbs to make judgements that are generally quite accurate but can lead to error.8 Our reliance on these shortcuts means that we are not always capable of making rational choices in the face of high levels of uncertainty and risk. Our ability to think and make decisions rationally is further compounded with our relative inability to quantify and deal with probability or uncertainty and risk.9 In order to overcome this, we rely upon a variety of mental shortcuts or biases that make sense out of issues too unpredictable to be properly

Roger A. Pielke, Jr, What is Climate Change? in Issues in Science and Technology, summer 2004, accessed April 19, 2010, http://www.issues.org/20.4/p_pielke.html. 2 Mike Hulme, Abrupt Climate Change: Can Society Cope?, Philosophical Transactions: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 361 1810, (2003): 2001. 3 Thomas Lowe and Irene Lorenzoni, Danger is all around: Eliciting expert perceptions for managing climate change through a mental models approach Global Environmental Change, 17, (2007): 138. 4 Peter Schwartz and Doug Randall, An Abrupt Climate Change Scenario and Its Implications for United States National Security, U.S. Department of Defense Report, 2003, 3. 5 Ibid, 1-4. 6 Cass R. Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions to Terrorism and Climate Change, Columbia Law Review, 107 (2), (2007). 7 Quoted in Black, Patterns of Global Terrorism, U.S. State Department, April 30, 2003, accessed April 19, 2010, http://www.state.gov/s/ct/rls/crt/2002/html/19977.htm,. 8 Jeffrey Rachlinski, Innovation in Environmental Policy: The Psychology of Global Climate Change, University of Illinois Law Review, 299, (2000): 4. 9 Neville Nicholls, Cognitive Illusions, Heuristics, and Climate Prediction, Bulletin of American Meteorological Society, 80 (7), (1999): 1386.

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processed.10 In other words, our biases play a crucial role in the development of our choices and beliefs when it comes to risks and probabilities. Therefore, how we interpret information or forecasts impacts our decision-making process. It is these biases and belief systems that frame how we address a risk. Therefore, why is terrorism viewed as a national priority while climate change is not? These biases are not necessarily acknowledged, as we are not always aware that we are making erroneous choices, given that the observer doesnt see that he doesnt see what he doesnt see.11 Before addressing the question of why the public and policy-makers focus on terrorism to the detriment of climate change, this paper will first provide a brief overview of the impact of cognitive biases on how experts, policy-makers, and the public engage issues. An understanding of the influence of these biases and assumptions, at all levels of risk analysis and interpretation, must be appreciated in order to demonstrate how these issues influence our perception of what a plausible threat is and what it is not. At the root of risk analysis are expert opinions and forecasts. These opinions would ideally be objectively formulated based on data that has been assimilated in a rational way. However, even in the realm of natural sciences this is not a given, with biases affecting what information is used and what underlying assumptions experts already possess. Various scholars have written on this topic, ranging from the geosciences to meteorological predictions. Nicholls argues that all sciences involving forecasts and predictions are subject to biases that affect the way models are constructed and how expert predictions are then interpreted by concerned actors.12 Drawing from the example of El Nino in 1997/1998, Nicholls argues that scientists tend to be overly confident in their models and their own knowledge.13 This is due to how experts assimilate information, whereby powerful initial assumptions influence how they interpret new information.14 Furthermore, new evidence appears reliable and informative if it is consistent with ones initial beliefs meaning that we assimilate information in a way that supplements our existing perspective.15 This is true for both terrorism and climate change; as seen in the divergent opinions on the nature of the threat of Al-Qaeda (AQ), with scholars such as Sageman and Hoffman pointing out data that is consistent with their beliefs and dismissing other information.16 They both have studied AQ as an organisation but have come to two opposing conclusions: on one hand, Sageman argues that AQ has evolved into a decentralised and leaderless movement based more on ideology than a hierarchical entity, and on the other, Hoffman asserts that AQ is still very much a more classical-style organisation, with objectives formulated by its top leaders being carried out by independent cells.17

10 11

Rachlinski, Innovation, 4. Heinz Von Forester quoted in Karlheinz Steinmuller, "Thinking out of the Box. Weak Signals and Wild Cards for European Regions," Futura, 2, (2007). 12 Nicholls, Cognitive Illusions, 1386. 13 Ibid, 1390. 14 Ibid, 1386. 15 Rachlinski, Innovation, 5. 16 Marc Sageman, Leaderless Jihad: Terror Networks in 21st Century, (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008); Bruce Hoffman, Al Qaeda has a new Strategy, Obama Needs one too in The Washington Post, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2010/01/08/AR2010010803555.html, January 10th 2010. 17 Ibid.

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Moreover, the use of language is critical in the development of forecasts and risk assessment. How experts frame their positions and predictions will have an impact on the receiver: studies have shown that the wording of reports plays an understated role in how the reader will react and thus make decisions. Nicholls states that in the face of losses and in the face of gains we tend to be more conservative when offered gains and adventurous when we face loss.18 In other words the framing of the issue influences how decision-makers will react. All these factors play a key role in how policy-makers assess the presented information and make their decisions. Here again there are multiple biases that influence what choices will be made. In this respect, the concept of timing is crucial to how policy-makers will react to climate change.19 Due to their organisational bias, they are prone to short-sightedness, as they see problems only in the short term and within a limited geographical space.20 As such, decision-makers will look at climate change forecasts in ways that reflect their personal position: how will climate change and emissions mitigation affect the major constituencies of my political party?21 Therefore, if a threat is viewed as being a long-term and slowly evolving risk, then policy-makers are unlikely to push for dramatic and restrictive policies that would curtail this possible threat. The problem is that despite calls for action by the scientific community, the threat of climate change [...] remains a psychologically, temporally and spatially distant risk.22 Consequently, a policy-makers perception of plausibility and proximity of the threat will have an impact on how the policy-maker interprets the information presented to him. He will thus pick what he perceives as dangerous depending on his perceptions.23 Consequentially, if presented with reports on climate change and on terrorism he will prioritise terrorism over the former because his biases and assumptions create this threat as more plausible than the latter. Finally the degree to which a policy-maker engages a threat or risk will have an impact on the publics perception of the plausibility of such a threat.24 As such the rhetoric used by then-President Bush Jr. in the aftermath of the 9/11 attack was made in a language of war and danger. During the course of the War on Terror, the language was one of risk: we are a nation at risk and our country is more in danger of an attack.25 There is no similar use of language with regards to climate change, with politicians seeking to dampen the impact of climate change as a plausible threat to the U.S.. For example, Watson, the chief climate change negotiator for the Bush administration, stated of Hurricane Katrina that there is a
Nicholls, Cognitive Illusions, 1388. Lowe and Lorenzoni, Danger is all around, 138. 20 Michelle C. Baddeley, Andrew Curtis, and Rachel A. Wood, An Introduction to Prior Information Derived from Probabilistic Judgements: Elicitation of Knowledge, Cognitive Biases and Herding, Geological Society Special Publications, 239, 2004, 8. 21 Michael Oppenheimer and Alexander Todorov, Global Warming: The Psychology of Long Term Risk, Climatic Change, 77, (2006): 1, accessed April 17, 2010, DOI: 10.1007/s10584-006-9086-6. 22 Irene Lorenzoni and Nick Pidgeon, Public Views on Climate Change: European and USA Perspectives, Climactic Change, 77, (2006): 86. 23 Lowe and Lorenzoni, Danger is all around, 140. 24 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 520. 25 President Bush quoted in Suzanne Goldenberg, We are a Nation in Danger The Guardian, August 3rd 2004, accessed April 17, 2010, http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2004/aug/03/uselections2004.usa; and Associated Press, Bush: Congress Putting U.S. in Danger in MSNBC February 15th 2008, accessed April 17, 2010, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23184150/.
19 18

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difference between climate and extreme weather [...] we cannot blame any single extreme event, and attribute that to climate change.26 The biases coming into play at the two previous levels complement the biases of the general public and their reaction to uncertain threats and risks the future may hold. Various surveys in the U.S. and Europe have shown that these populations view climate change as a serious issue with important political and moral consequences.27 However, this perception has not correlated with legislation that seriously attempts to mitigate the impact of climate change.28 The rationale behind this is how the public recognizes the risk and crucially how they perceive the cost of policies.29 As stated earlier, individuals react differently when they believe that they have much to gain or lose from change. The public will therefore subjectively assess the validity of restrictive legislation through biased lenses whereby their perception of costs and benefits of legislation are placed against the perceived risk.30 Therefore the question is what cognitive biases come into play when the public evaluates risks presented to them by decision-makers and experts. Leiserowitz argues that for a threat to become plausible in the minds of the public it must be perceived as having personal ramifications for them.31 In his study, he found that most Americans view the risk of climate change as lying in a distant realm, where the threats would not affect him or his family but would most likely play out in a remote country.32 Climate change is thus perceived as a distant and impersonal threat removed in space and time.33 Sunsteins analysis of public perceptions of climate change demonstrated that this perceived distance made actors overestimate their immunity to risks, allowing them to ignore the threat of climate change.34 Moreover, a rational understanding of the probability of the threat is overshadowed by personal experience and emotions.35 These two factors play a powerful role in how individuals perceive threats because they stimulate images and allow us to envision the threat, thus making it appear more real and plausible.36 Stated alternatively, our biases stipulate that if threats can be more readily imagined, they are more likely to occur and affect ourselves, family and friends. As such, the ability of actors to ascertain plausibility is overshadowed by emotions and images in what Slovic and Fischhoff call the availability bias.37 Within these instances, we consider

Watson quoted in Associated Press, New heat on U.S. over global warming treaty in MSNBC November 29th 2005, accessed April 17, 2010, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10256169/from/RSS/,. 27 Suzanne Stoll-Kleemann, Tim O'Riordan, Carlo C. Jaeger, The Psychology of Denial Concerning Climate Mitigation Measures: Evidence From Swiss Focus Groups, Global Environmental Change, 11, (2001): 109-111. 28 Ibid. 29 Oppenheimer and Todorov, Global Warming, 2. 30 Ellen Peters and Paul Slovic, The Springs of Actions: Affective and Analytical Information Processing in Choice, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 26 (12), (2000). 31 Anthony, Leiserowitz, Climate Change Risk Perception and Policy Preferences: The Role of Affect, Imagery, and Values, Climatic Change, 77, (2006): 52. 32 Ibid, 53. 33 Lowe and Lorenzoni, Danger is all around, 132. 34 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 552. 35 Lorenzoni and Pidgeon, Public Views on Climate Change, 73. 36 Leiserowitz, Climate Change Risk Perception, 49. 37 Baruch Fischhoff, Paul Slovic and Sarah Lichtenstein, Knowing with Certainty: The Appropriateness of Extreme Confidence, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 3 (4), (1977).

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that the frequency of events is tied to our memory of past examples.38 Consequently, risk reduction legislation is often fuelled by identifiable crises, bringing worst-case scenarios to mind.39 These misleading personal experiences or memories cause risks to be over-or underestimated, whereby terrorism is granted much more credibility than climate change.40 Therefore, though the public believes that climate change is a threat, they do not believe that individual action can mitigate it. Nor do they believe that there are grounds for restrictive policies that will affect their lifestyle and the competitiveness of their nation in the global economy.41 Consequently, their stance is actually one of wishful thinking, in which they deem individual action meaningless, allowing them to evade responsibility, while hoping that someone else will take the lead in addressing the issue.42 As such, public opinion in the U.S. and Europe consider that their current lifestyle outweighs the possible benefits of tackling climate change.43 As we shall see in the following section, this is not the case with the threat of terrorism, where the plausibility of the threat is considered to be high enough to justify restrictive measures to dampen its possible effects. Nevertheless, we have not witnessed a widespread call for action against climate change that would impinge on our pocketbook and way of life.44 The question this paper seeks to address is how the prioritization of risk and then the reaction to them are affected by the impact of cognitive biases on risk assessment at policy-making and public opinion levels. In order to be able to show that cognitive biases indeed have such an impact, we must first ask ourselves if the two threats chosen are similar enough to allow for such a comparison. Both terrorism and climate change are considered to be low plausibility high-impact incidents, where, despite the unlikelihood of us being affected, the consequences of the threat would be huge.45 Sunstein argues that both carry with them worst-case scenarios that could cost the lives of thousands, yet no one is able to assign a probability of an incident occurring.46 However, we can find statements such as the One Percent Doctrine, attributed to former Vice President Cheney, "if there was even a 1 percent chance of terrorists getting a weapon of mass destruction and there has been a small probability of such an occurrence for some time the United States must now act as if it were a certainty."47By contrast, there has been no similar statement made for the issue of climate change. The mainstream media downplays the threat of climate change, assuming that climate change will be a gradual process during which our societies will have the luxury of time to adapt and even profit from it.48 Moreover, Lorenzoni and Pidgeon argue that trust in governments and institutions is
Ibid, 563. Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 539 40 Nicholls, Cognitive Illusions, 1386. 41 Lowe and Lorenzoni, Danger is all around. 138. 42 Lorenzoni and Pidgeon, Public Views, 86. 43 Stoll-Kleemann, O'Riordan and Jaeger, The Psychology of Denial, 113. 44 Leiserowitz, Climate Change Risk Perception, 52, 56. 45 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 505. 46 Ibid, 505-506. 47 Suskind quoted by Michiko Kakutani, Personality, Ideology and Bushs Terror Wars in The New York Times, June 20th 2006, accessed April 17, 2010, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/20/books/20kaku.html,. 48 Alexander MacDonald, The Wild Card in the Climate Change Debate in Issues in Science and Technology, July 1st 2001: 1.
39 38

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crucial for public acceptance of policy choices, seemingly public trust in governments ability to tackle terrorism surpasses their ability to handle climate change.49 A variety of scholars have argued that in order for a threat to muster widespread public support and political will, there must be a vivid image that comes to mind when one thinks of the threat.50 As we saw previously, since humans struggle with the notion of uncertainty, our brains process this information using memory of past events, which are then associated with likelihood. In the case of terrorism, there are several events that can come into play when assessing the probability of a terrorist attack: for example, 9/11, the London 7/7 attack and the Madrid Bombing.51 These events stimulate powerful emotions that conjure intense images of disaster whilst the idea of climate change does not.52 These strong feelings cloud an actors ability to judge probability, which leads to a push for mitigation actions that can supersede the scope of the threat.53 This means that we perceive terrorism as more likely to have an effect on our daily lives. In other words, due to vivid images and strong emotions, we assume that we have a higher chance of being adversely affected by a terrorist attack than by climate change.54 There is no equivalent image for the case of climate change: environmentalists have failed to demonstrate a link between Hurricane Katrina and climate change, thus limiting its impact on public perceptions.55 Moreover, there is no focal point that can easily be identified. In the case of 9/11 or the 7/7 Bombings, policy-makers and the public could point their finger at Osama bin Laden or radical Islamic terrorist organisations. However, this has not been the case with climate change; in this instance scientists have enumerated a variety of reasons for climate change with carbon emissions figuring high on the list of causes.56 Despite this, it is much harder to visualise carbon emissions than it is to evoke the well-known face of bin Laden. Likewise, it is easier to link terrorism with how effective policies will be; the measures put in place in the U.S. reflect this belief, as they are believed to be targeted against a very real threat, which if left undeterred may have dramatic consequences.57 This is not the case with climate change where political beliefs and losses to ones lifestyle inhibit individuals from supporting policies.58 Therefore the costs and benefits are perceived differently because of our biases. While most people do not believe they will be impacted by either risk, there still remains the belief that the costs associated with implementing counter-terrorism measures are beneficial enough to accept the inconveniences.59 However, since the threat of climate change is not perceived to be plausible in the short term, there is no such willingness to make sacrifice.

49 50

Lorenzoni and Pidgeon, Public Views, 89. Ibid, 80. 51 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 507 52 Ibid, 534. 53 Ibid, 542; Rachlinski, Innovation in Environmental Policy, 8. 54 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 516. 55 Leiserowitz, Climate Change Risk Perception, 45; Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 520. 56 Schwartz and Randall, An Abrupt Climate Change Scenario, 2-4. 57 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 503. 58 Stoll-Kleemann, O'Riordan and Jaeger, The Psychology of Denial, 110. 59 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 527-528.

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Therefore, one can argue that global warming and the policies proposed to mitigate or adapt to it occur within a rich and complex socio-political context, in which groups of individuals are socio-politically predisposed to select, ignore and interpret information in different ways.60 This means that we assimilate information that reduces or amplifies risks depending on our biases.61 Applied to terrorism and climate change, we see signs of the rising and ever present threat of terrorism whereas we ignore the threat of climate change. This is translated by a rejection of information attempting to demonstrate the risks of climate change, while legitimising information showing that terrorism is a threat. Moreover, even mixed evidence will, instead of creating doubt, reinforce our beliefs that our assumptions and primary position was correct.62 A very real example of this is the rationale and public support for the invasion of Iraq on the grounds of the War on Terror.63 Despite the growing number of scientists and experts ringing alarm bells and the growing number of signs of climate change, there is little evidence that public perceptions of the risks are evolving to demand greater preventive measures. The melting of the ice caps in the Northern Hemisphere have not caused a public outrage and demand for action, the likes of which were witnessed in the aftermath of the collapse of the World Trade Centre buildings. The reasons behind this are the cognitive biases that we use unconsciously to assess uncertainties and risks. This paper has argued that these biases are crucial in how the public and decisionmakers prioritise threats and risks that demand counter measures and legislation. As such these biases have led to a deployment of impressive measures to tackle the threat of terrorism while the efforts involved in reducing our emissions have been next to naught. The reasons for this are not that there is a lower risk involved in climate change but due to the way we perceive terrorism as a more plausible threat than climate change.

60 61

Leiserowitz, Climate Change Risk Perception, 64. Ibid, p. 49. 62 Nicholls, Cognitive Illusions, 1393. 63 Sunstein, On the Divergent American Reactions, 527.

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Bibliography E-Journals: Baddeley, Michelle C., Andrew Curtis, and Rachel A. Wood. An Introduction to Prior Information Derived from Probabilistic Judgements: Elicitation of Knowledge, Cognitive Biases and Herding. Geological Society Special Publications, 239, (2004): 1-26. Hulme, Mike. Abrupt Climate Change: Can Society Cope? Philosophical Transactions: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences. 361 (1810), (2003): 2001-2021. Leiserowitz, Anthony. Climate Change Risk Perception and Policy Preferences: The Role of Affect, Imagery, and Values. Climatic Change, 77 (2006): 45-72. Lorenzoni, Irene and Nick Pidgeon. Public Views on Climate Change: European and USA Perspectives. Climactic Change, 77(2006): 73-95. Lowe, Thomas and Irene Lorenzoni. Danger is all around: Eliciting expert perceptions for managing climate change through a mental models approach. Global Environmental Change, 17, (2007): 131-146. MacDonald, Alexander. The Wild Card in the Climate Change Debate in Issues in Science and Technology, July 1st 2001: 1-7. Nicholls, Neville. Cognitive Illusions, Heuristics, and Climate Prediction. Bulletin of American Meteorological Society, 80 (7), (1999): 1386-1397. Oppenheimer, Michael and Alexander Todorov. Global Warming: The Psychology of Long Term Risk. Climatic Change, 77 (2006): 1-6. Peters, Ellen and Paul Slovic. The Springs of Actions: Affective and Analytical Information Processing in Choice. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 26 (12), (2000): 1465-1475. Rachlinski, Jeffrey. Innovation in Environmental Policy: The Psychology of Global Climate Change. University of Illinois Law Review, 299, (2000): 299-319. Fischhoff, Baruch, Paul Slovic, and Sarah Lichtenstein. Knowing with Certainty: The Appropriateness of Extreme Confidence. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 3 (4), (1977): 552-564. Sunstein, Cass R. On the Divergent American Reactions to Terrorism and Climate Change. Columbia Law Review, 107 (2), (2007): 1-56. Steinm ller, Karlheinz. Thinking out of the Box. Weak Signals and Wild Cards for European Regions. Futura, 2 (2007). Stoll-Kleemann, Suzanne, Tim O'Riordan, and Carlo C. Jaeger. The Psychology of Denial Concerning Climate Mitigation Measures: Evidence From Swiss Focus Groups. Global Environmental Change, 11, (2001): 107-117. Sageman, Marc. Leaderless Jihad: Terror Networks in 21st Century. University of Pennsylvania Press: Philadelphia, 2008.

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Schwartz Peter and Doug Randall. An Abrupt Climate Change Scenario and Its Implications for United States National Security. U.S. Department of Defence Report: Washington, 2003. Black, Cofer. Patterns of Global Terrorism. U.S. State Department, April 30th 2003, Accessed April 18, 2010. http://www.state.gov/s/ct/rls/crt/2002/html/19977.htm. Pielke, Roger A. Jr. What is Climate Change. Issues in Science and Technology. Summer 2004. Accessed April 19, 2010. http://www.issues.org/20.4/p_pielke.html. Associated Press. Bush: Congress Putting U.S. in Danger MSNBC, February 15th 2008. Accessed April 19, 2010. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23184150. Goldenberg, Suzanne. We are a Nation in Danger. The Guardian, August 3rd 2004. Accessed April 17, 2010. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2004/aug/03/uselections2004.usa Hoffman, Bruce. Al Qaeda has a new Strategy, Obama Needs one too. The Washington Post, January 10th 2010. Accessed April 17, 2010. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2010/01/08/AR2010010803555.html. Kakutani, Michiko. Personality, Ideology and Bushs Terror Wars. The New York Times, June 20th 2006. Accessed April 17, 2010. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/20/books/20kaku.html.

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THE FUTURE OF FOOD SECURITY: COMPLEXITY AND A SYSTEMIC APPROACH


Ya-Yi Ong
Food is not a commodity like others. We should go back to a policy of maximum food self-sufficiency. It is crazy for us to think we can develop countries around the world without increasing their ability to feed themselves. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton, Speech at the United Nations World Food Day, October 16, 2008

Introduction Over the past hundred years, the world has seen only three major spikes in food prices. The first one took place right after World War II, the second one occurred in the 1970s and the third one happened just recently, between 2007 and 2008.1 There is a saying: Crisis is the mother of invention. When the latest food price crisis struck, it revived research and debates on the future of food security. For too long, the world has been caught up in endless rounds of deliberation on climate change, energy, nuclear proliferation everything, except the most basic one that keeps all of mankind alive: food. However now we have series upon series of papers that detail how governments, businesses, and civil society should act to ensure global food security. It is thus the authors intention to caution readers against being lulled into thinking that food security is just another one of those issues that can be simplistically resolved through the implementation of a grocery list of recommendations. On the contrary, a systemic approach that will consider the complexity of food security, notably regarding its future, must be adopted. Section I of this paper will present the facts and events, giving first an overview of how food production was tackled with seeming success in the past via the Green Revolution, then bringing us back to the present issue of food price crisis. Section II will emphasize the complexity of the interdependent factors of food security with respect to its future. Section III will seek to critique the kinds of factors that are included in a systems approach, so as to allow for its best use. Section I: From Past Success to Present Debacle Past Success The Green Revolution Until the first part of the 20th century, increasing the amount of land under cultivation was the most important means of augmenting global food production.2 Between the 1960s and the 1970s, the Green Revolution, a process that increased industrialized agriculture through the expansion of irrigation infrastructure and widespread use of synthetic fertilizer / pesticide, became the key driver for ensuring that food supply kept pace with the population growth.3 Even as it was lauded for its success, the Green Revolution has not been without its limitations. Mainly premised on the mechanization of agriculture, critics
Joachim von Braun, Responding to the World Food Crisis: Getting on the Right Track, International Food Policy Research Institute, 1 September 2008, accessed 20 April 2010, http://www.ifpri.org/publication/responding-world-food-crisis-getting-right-track, 1. 2 Alex Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, Global Food Security for the 21st Century, Chatham House report, 1 January 2009, accessed 20 April 2010, http://www.chathamhouse.org.uk/publications/papers/view/-/id/694/, 17. 3 Ibid.
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associated it with a host of environmental degradation and pollution problems.4 They also charged that the benefits of the process were unequally distributed with technological revolution mainly concentrated on the best agricultural lands, where large-scale farmers in developed nations were the main beneficiaries, leaving out small-scale rural farmers in less developed countries.5 It is also subject to the law of diminishing returns.6 Between 1970 and 1990, productivity growth (global average aggregate yield) was 2.0% annually.7 This declined to an average of 1.1% annually between 1990 and 2007. The fact that world production has since been falling even as population and consumption continue to rise is a cause for concern. Alas, man is prone to overestimating the success of his undertakings. Richard Heuer refers to this as a cognitive bias related to the perception of cause and effect.8 And so it is that rapid technological progress caused man to think that there will always be enough food for an ever-increasing population (an unintended consequence of progress), without having realized that the inequalities which came with the 20th century Green Revolution have actually made the threats faced in the coming decades even greater than those previously confronted. Present Debacle Food Price Crisis Various reasons have been attributed to the most recent food price crisis. In 2000, apparent abundant food supplies on the world markets coupled with an efficient supply chain network led to a long-term slump in the price of commodities. For a time, policy intended for production to fall behind consumption so as to clear surplus stock.9 However, the unanticipated depreciation of the U.S. dollar in 2002 caused oil prices to rise.10 As oil prices rose, the costs of agricultural inputs and transport increased. Rising oil prices also turned bio fuels into an attractive substitute for oil in places like the United States and the European Union.11 This has inadvertently led to developing countries like Indonesia and Malaysia rapidly cutting down forests to expand oil-palm plantations in a bid to supply up to 20% of the EU bio fuels market.12 In 2006, it is thought that investment funds use of automated trend-following trading practices could have contributed to increased price volatility of commodities. At around the same time, extreme weather in a number of major foodproducing countries contributed to shortages in food production.13 Consequently from 2006 onwards, food prices began to rise sharply, a trend that subsequently led to major civil unrests from Mexico to Pakistan. In the West African state of Burkina Faso, rioters burned down government buildings and looted stores.14 This was followed by massive protests in Cameroon, wherein a taxi drivers
Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, 19. Ibid. 6 Ibid. 7 Ibid. 8 Richard J. Heuer, Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, (New York: Novinka Books, 2006), 145. 9 Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, 12. 10 Ibid. 11 Ibid. 12 Eric Holt-Gimnez, Food First Backgrounder: Biofuels--Myths of the Agro-fuels Transition, 6 July 2007, Food First, Institute for Food and Development Policy, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.foodfirst.org/node/1711. 13 Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, 12. 14 Vivienne Walt, The World's Growing Food-Price Crisis, Time, 27 February 2008, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1717572-1,00.html.
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strike over fuel prices mutated to one on food prices.15 And Indian protesters torched food-ration stores in West Bengal, accusing businesses of selling governmentsubsidized food on the lucrative black market.16 In mid-2007, in a bid to curb the inflation of domestic food prices, governments imposed export restrictions.17 By 2008, importing countries, in turn, reduced trade barriers to build their stocks and likewise control inflation.18 It was only during late 2008 that commodity prices started decreasing as a result of the global economic slowdown.19 Section II: Complexity the Past and the Present linked with the Future What do the previous two series of events tell us? It is that we live in exciting times wherein we are constantly pushed to go beyond our limits. Interesting enough, Blaise Pascal, a 17th century French philosopher and mathematician wrote, But the parts of the world all have such a relationship and such link to one another, that I believe it impossible to know one without the other and without the whole.20 Roger Lewin, in his 1992 work Complexity: Life at the Edge of Chaos, succinctly observed that a past where the job of a policy-maker was to ensure things ran smoothly in a command-control style of management is not applicable in todays world anymore.21 A time when policy-makers could operate with a machine model of the world was a period wherein a straightforward response like the Green Revolution could find much success. It can perhaps be said that we human beings are victims of our own progress. We have advanced from a world predicated on linear thinking, control and predictability to the next level.22 For we now find ourselves struggling with something more organic and nonlinear, where there is limited control and a restricted ability to predict the norm.23 Our continued advancement has resulted in a connected economy where top-down linear management is simply ineffective and impedes creativity.24 It is a matter of fact that the 2007/2008 food price crisis triggered a massive re-thinking of how human beings need to view the security of food systems. At the same time, that realization is tempered by the enormity of the task at hand. In order to seriously tackle an issue as vital as mankinds food security, one needs to consider the dynamics of the entire system. It is not enough for food production to be maximized; the entire food systems growth now has to be premised on a sustainable platform that is robust in the face of any shocks. Emphasis has changed from mere optimization to renewal and resilience. Jay Forrester, in a 1998 paper aptly titled Designing the Future, mentioned that dynamic systems are complex, in that sometimes policies established to solve a

Ibid. Ibid. 17 Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, 12. 18 Ibid. 19 Ibid. 20 Blaise Pascal, Thoughts of Mr. Pascal on Religion and on some other topics that have been found after his death among his papers (Paris: Chez Guillaume Desprez, 1671), 318. 21 Roger Lewin, Complexity: Life at the Edge of Chaos (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992), 199. 22 Ibid, 197. 23 Ibid. 24 Lewin, Complexity, 199.
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problem are actually its very cause.25 Such situations cause downward spirals, especially if the very policies that are causing the problems are believed to be alleviating the problems. This principle has been demonstrated in the recent food price crisis, wherein one countrys knee-jerk response of curbing food exports led to another states counter-reaction of lowering import barriers, further exacerbating the security of food supplies in both. Indeed, human beings live in a never-ending circular environment, wherein each action is based on a set of current conditions, and these in turn affect future conditions, while these changed conditions become the basis for later action.26 Inevitably, human beings have to think of food security as one complex adaptive system, where a diversity of agents interact and mutually affect each other and in so doing, generate novel, emergent, behaviour for the system as a whole.27 The old business-as-usual model advocated by the Green Revolution is characterized by an intensification of food production through high reliance on chemical inputs. While this helped to increase food production for a few decades, it also put enormous pressures on the environment and unwittingly lent support to the expansion of unhealthy diet patterns.28 The alternative is to seek to rebalance human beings diet while ensuring the utilization of environmental-friendly and resource-efficient farming methods. However, achieving food security on the basis of sustainable development practices is not as easy as it sounds. Several interdependent factors are involved. Thus, it is imperative to use feedback loops to interconnect them, for there is neither beginning nor end to the process, as we shall now see.29 Land: The Green Revolution advances were principally made through increasing the amount of land that could be used for cultivation. If man is to continue this trend of increasing food production, acreage needs to be expanded.30 However, the amount of farmland available in the world continues to shrink owing to the expansion of urban spaces.31 Meanwhile, a new trend of cash-rich countries acquiring land from poor but land-rich countries in order to secure food supplies further disadvantages developing states.32 Water: Falling water tables across large parts of the world limits the amount of land that can be cultivated.33 The overall decrease in the availability of water affects diet patterns as well. While a kilogram of root crop like potato requires 500 litres of water to produce, a kilogram of meat like beef requires 15,000 litres of water to produce! Energy: Today, links between the worlds food and energy economies are stronger than ever. Higher oil prices tend to contribute to higher food prices.34 In turn,
Jay Forrester, Designing the Future, MIT System Dynamics in Education Project, 15 December 1998, accessed April 20, 2010, http://sysdyn.clexchange.org/sdep/papers/Designjf.pdf, 4. 26 Ibid, 3. 27 Lewin, Complexity, 198. 28 Soil Association, Strategies for a food secure future, 1 January 2009, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.soilassociation.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=aBVYgjxtNOI%3d&tabid=565, 1. 29 Forrester, Designing the Future, 4. 30 Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, 20. 31 Laurie A. Garrett, Food Failures and Futures, Council on Foreign Relations, 15 May 2008, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.cfr.org/publication/16289/food_failures_and_futures.html, 9. 32 Von Braun, Responding to the World Food Crisis, 5. 33 Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, 24. 34 Ibid, 27.
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rising petroleum costs generate huge interest in the conversion of bio-fuels to ethanol. Again, this act of diverting food crops to fuel sources puts upward pressure on food prices and imperils the future security of food supplies.35 Climate: The quest to reduce carbon emissions is seeing major shifts in agricultural production, from industrialized farming to organic farming, which causes a decrease in the productive yield in the short-term. But unless adequate cuts in emissions are achieved, there will be long-term impacts on the planet, which will affect the agriculture industry as well.36 Erratic rainfall and rising temperatures need to be accounted for as well. Demography: The current population forecasts suggest that world population will reach a total of 9.2 billion people in the year 2050 and most of this increase will be accounted for by the less developed regions.37 Once more, a rising population implies increased pressures on food supply. The World Bank estimates that by 2030, nearly a billion more people will join the worlds existing middle class. With rising middle class prosperity comes greater demand for meat and diverse foods.38 Diseases: Many of the developing countries face the additional burden of high HIV infection rates. This, coupled with insufficient access to treatment, means that even if the population increases, the number of adults available to produce food in those regions will be adversely affected.39 Development assistance: Food aid provided by developed countries like the United States has been accused of primarily serving the interests of its donors by providing the American agricultural sector with a means to dispose of their surplus produce.40 This in turn depresses the agricultural sector of recipient nations and further endangers the livelihood of small farm holders in the rural areas, eroding their food security. Politics: More often than not, food production remains a political issue as it affects the use and control of resources that is the economic basis for many countries.41 And yet, contentious issues such as biotechnology, intellectual property rights, land ownership and empowerment of women continue to be neglected in these global political discussions. 42 Actually, the task of analyzing the complex linkages of such interdependent factors requires a team of domain experts and subject specialists. Nevertheless, we shall attempt a brief version here (see Figure 1 below).

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Garrett, Food Failures, 15. Evans, The Feeding of the Nine Billion, 28. 37 Ibid, p.30. 38 Garrett, Food Failures, 12. 39 United Nations, World Population Prospect, The 2008 Revision, United Nations, 1 January 2008, accessed April 20, 2010, http://esa.un.org/unpd/wpp2008/index.htm, 12. 40 Sandy Ross, "The World Food Programme: a case of benign U.S. policy?," Australian Journal of International Affairs 61.2 (2007): 267-281. 41 Jane Midgley, Just Desserts? Securing global food futures, Institute for Public Policy Research, 27 January 2009, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.ippr.org.uk/publicationsandreports/publication.asp?id=644, 31. 42 Ibid.

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Figure 1: Food Security and its Various Interdependent Factors

From the systems perspective, all of life is interconnected. The much-touted effects of climate change imply that the security of our planets water supplies will not always be guaranteed. Without sufficient water, arable lands that do not undergo the requisite irrigation will not be able to produce the expected amount of food. And as the worlds population continues to grow, demand for energy resources remains relentless. Fuel prices are driven up by rising demand and decreasing / stagnant supply. This leads to the never-ending search for alternative sources of energy, currently found in the form of bio-fuels. However, an increasing amount of land that is dedicated to the cultivation of bio-fuel crops (instead of food crops) threatens the stability of food supply. Added to this already intricate situation is the emergence of pandemics and diseases that may imperil the lives of the very people who are at the forefront of food production. However, if we consider the possibility that these very diseases themselves may mean that the worlds population will never reach the projected nine billion, food security will not be an issue in the first place. It is a conundrum. Section III: Other Ways of looking at the Future The greatest challenge to policy-makers lies in the complexity of causality. No single piece of legislation can completely tackle the issue alone thus any policy must be based on a complex view that embraces all the different factors at play.43 One crucially independent factor that has often been missed out in the discussion of food futures is that of time itself. We find a wide array of literature discussing major issues like climate change, changing demographics, appropriate trade and
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Garrett, Food Failures, 11.

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agricultural policies, but rarely do we come across an article that places significant emphasis on the factor of time. In the one or two instances of such articles, there has been no rigorous justification as to why the authors chose a particular year to project the price of food. It appears to be based on whatever data is available to the authors at the time of writing. This brings to mind a type of cognitive bias that is related to an ambiguous expression of the probability of events. Part of the difficulty in responding to the food crisis is the lack of credible and up-to-date information on the impact of food prices on poor people and the effects of policy responses after implementation.44 One may ask why there is a need to spend some effort on the time factor. This is because, methodologically, in the systems approach, a small or incremental change in time may lead to chance variations becoming indistinguishable until they are seen from a broader perspective.45 Having too short a timeline could cause the analyst to miss the bigger picture that could have been discernible if the span of time had been lengthened. On the other hand, projecting too far into the future may lead to the failure to take into consideration more real and urgent medium-term problems on the assumption that advances in technology would obliterate those very issues in the future. Also, to make sense of the implications of recent food price behaviour for policy, it is necessary to consider whether what is being observed is a transitory spike or something persistent. A longer-term time perspective that covers a range of food commodities, taking currency and exchange rates, issues into consideration and the price of food relative to other commodities is required to formulate appropriate policies.46 Another crucial influential factor that has not been thoroughly discussed but is a part of the systems approach is the scale of space. Most writings appear to tackle food security directly on a global level. There is thus a failure to take into consideration that the reality is far from ideal. Not every state or region has the same capacity or capability to tackle the issue of food self-sufficiency. There is an almost unspoken assumption that trade will always be uninterrupted, that if one location has an inadequate supply, it could easily be purchased from locations with surplus produce, which could be effortlessly transported across the already established supply chain networks. This is a classic example of what Heuer would describe as a situation where We tend to perceive what we expect to perceive.47 What if there was a concerted terrorist attack on the global transport network, how would countries like Singapore account for the import of their food supply? Note that this scale of space factor does not just refer to the stereotypical developing country, which does not have sufficient access to food (either because it does not have the cash or because its lands are too arid for agriculture). It also refers to cash-rich developed states like Singapore, which has very little agriculture and is an open economy that is highly dependent on food imports.

Von Braun, Responding to the World Food Crisis, 8. Allena Leonard and Stafford Beer, The Systems Perspective: Methods and Models for the Future, Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon, Ed., The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, 2009, 5. 46 Karen H. Johnson, Food Price Inflation, Council of Foreign Relations, 7 July 2008, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.cfr.org/publication/16729/food_price_inflation.html, 4. 47 Heuer, Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, 22.
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In short, it is inadequate to speak of sustainable agricultural and rural development on a global scale. Situations vary widely from one continent to another, between regions of the same continent, between countries, and even within countries, on a local level. While various events that have taken place historically may serve as useful guides for tackling present day issues, caution needs to be exercised when applying them to future challenges. The complex nature of our world today dictates that such one-size-fits-across-all-time generalizations may not always hold true. A more accurate understanding of the scale of both time and space in a systems approach would greatly aid inter-state coordination efforts, leading to better securitization of food. Conclusion No one knows what the future holds. Foresight and warning studies on food security do not seek to predict its future. What it hopes to do is to enable researchers and policy-makers to contemplate the subject in ways that might enable them to anticipate any future shocks to the worlds food system. It is important that the response to the issue permits it to build the kind of food and agriculture system that can cope with a variety of possible outcomes. These outcomes could come in the form of high food and energy prices that could be caused by attacks on its supply chain networks or could materialize as a short-term glut of low food prices caused by a global recession. Whatever the result, it is important for mankind to stop lurching from one process to another and develop a system that can cope with surprise events on an international scale.48

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Von Braun, Responding to the World Food Crisis, 9.

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Bibliography Evans, Alex. The Feeding of the Nine Billion, Global Food Security for the 21st Century. Chatham House report, 1 January 2009. Accessed 20 April 2010, http://www.chathamhouse.org.uk/publications/papers/view/-/id/694/. Forrester, Jay. Designing the Future. 15 December 1998. MIT System Dynamics in Education Project. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://sysdyn.clexchange.org/sdep/papers/Designjf.pdf. Garrett, Laurie A. Food Failures and Futures. Council on Foreign Relations, 15 May 2008. Accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.cfr.org/publication/16289/food_failures_and_futures.html Heuer, Richard J. Psychology of Intelligence Analysis. New York: Novinka Books, 2006. Holt-Gimnez, Eric. Food First Backgrounder: Biofuels--Myths of the Agro-fuels Transition. 6 July 2007. Food First, Institute for Food and Development Policy. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.foodfirst.org/node/1711. Johnson, Karen H. Food Price Inflation. Council of Foreign Relations, 7 July 2008. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.cfr.org/publication/16729/food_price_inflation.html. Leonard, Allena, and Stafford Beer. The Systems Perspective: Methods and Models for the Future. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon, Ed. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology Version 3.0 2009. 5. Lewin, Roger. Complexity: Life at the Edge of Chaos. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992. Midgley, Jane. Just Desserts? Securing global food futures. Institute for Public Policy Research, 27 January 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.ippr.org.uk/publicationsandreports/publication.asp?id=644. Pascal, Blaise. Thoughts of Mr. Pascal on Religion and on some other topics that have been found after his death among his papers. Paris: Chez Guillaume Desprez, 1671. Ross, Sandy. The World Food Programme: a case of benign U.S. policy? Australian Journal of International Affairs 61.2 (2007): 267-281. Soil Association. Strategies for a food secure future. 1 January 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.soilassociation.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=aBVYgjxtNOI%3d&tab id=565. United Nations. World Population Prospect, The 2008 Revision. United Nations, 1 January 2008, Accessed April 20, 2010. http://esa.un.org/unpd/wpp2008/index.htm. Von Braun, Joachim. Responding to the World Food Crisis: Getting on the Right Track. International Food Policy Research Institute. 1 September 2008. Accessed April 20, 2010 http://www.ifpri.org/publication/responding-worldfood-crisis- getting-right-track.

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Walt, Vivienne. The World's Growing Food-Price Crisis. Time, 27 February 2008. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1717572-1,00.html.

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STRATEGIC FORESIGHT AND WARNING, THE UNITED STATES (U.S.) DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE AND COUNTERINSUGENCY IN IRAQ
Justin M. Goldman Introduction Strategic foresight is a critical tool for the United States (U.S.) Department of Defense (DoD) as planners confront a complex global security environment. These efforts cover a range of activities from exercises to assess the impact of force planning decisions to a war-game that simulates a major theatre of war to update existing operational plans. In his 2008 Bastille Day keynote address to the Second World Congress on Social Simulation, Joshua M. Epstein of the Brookings Institution argued that one of the many reasons for modelling was to train practitioners.1 Major DoD war-games are built around plausible scenarios with participants from multiple agencies, reflecting the need for whole-of-government approaches to these contingencies. The U.S. decision to invade Iraq in March 2003 is one of the most scrutinized actions in recent years. This conflict has been unforgiving, with high costs incurred through loss of lives and treasure, amidst the chaos that the U.S.-led coalition was unprepared for at the start of the war. Strategic anticipation will be examined through multiple activities related to U.S. involvement in Iraq. Many of the challenges in a post-Saddam Hussein Iraq were identified in a now unclassified war-game called Desert Crossing. The first section in this paper will examine the actions driven by Central Command (CENTCOM) under General Anthony Zinni that led to the Desert Crossing war-game and the insights it produced. Former Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Analysis Thomas Fingar has addressed the need for strategic foresight to address risks, and to identify the opportunities to shift key developments in more positive directions.2 In the fall of 2005 when the Iraq War was deteriorating, General David Petraeus took over the Doctrine Division at the Combined Arms Center (CAC) at Fort Leavenworth. The second section will look at the effort taken under his leadership to overhaul a counterinsurgency doctrine that had not been updated for over two decades. By engaging stakeholders ranging from intelligence officials to human rights experts, the doctrine reflected how kinetic military operations had been insufficient in postSaddam Iraq. As Michel Godet has written, the complexity of problems and the need to address them collectively call for methods that are as rigorous and participatory as possible to enable those involved to identify the appropriate problems and agree upon their solutions.3 In conjunction with the new doctrine, this paper will look at the December 2006 exercise at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) that proposed an alternative military strategy that was focused on protecting the Iraqi population.
Joshua M. Epstein, Why Model? Santa Fe Institute Working Papers, 2008, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.santafe.edu/research/publications/workingpapers/08-09-040.pdf. 2 Thomas Fingar, Anticipating Opportunities: Using Intelligence to Shape the Future, Series 2009 Reducing Uncertainty: Intelligence and National Security, Lecture 3, FSI Stanford, CISAC Lecture Series, October 21, 2009, accessed April 20, 2010, http://iisdb.stanford.edu/evnts/5859/lecture_text.pdf. 3 Michel Godet, Creating Futures: Scenario Planning as a Strategic Management Tool, (Paris: Economica, 2006), 21.
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Desert Crossing The end of the 1991 Gulf War resulted in a permanent cease-fire agreement where the United Nations (UN) Security Council ordered the Saddam Hussein Government to eliminate its nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons programs under international supervision. The UN Special Commission (UNSCOM) would be responsible for conducting inspections to ensure that such disarmament was taking place.4 In the Gulf Wars immediate aftermath, General Anthony Zinni served as the Deputy Commanding General of Operation Provide Comfort, which provided relief to Kurdish refugees in northern Iraq. He later wrote of the dominant role of non-military matters stating he was now exposed to political issues, economic issues, humanitarian issues, social issues, international agency issues, NGO issues, [and] media issues.5 This experience would impact his approach when he became the Commander of CENTCOM in 1997. While the Saddam Hussein regime continued to obstruct the work of UNSCOM, the situation deteriorated rapidly in December 1998. UNSCOM Chief Richard Butler withdrew his inspectors and the UN evacuated its staff from Iraq. Operation Desert Fox was an air campaign that targeted nuclear, chemical, and biological sites as well as the Iraqi regimes ability to threaten its neighbours, which lasted for 72 hours.6 Although reporting from the region made it clear that the regime was shaken, Saddam Hussein remained belligerent. General Zinni began to examine the challenge of a post-Saddam Iraq and the type of response needed from the U.S. Government. Although the outcome of a military operation against Iraq was clear, dealing with the aftermath was not; General Zinni, later in testimony before the U.S. Congress, urged caution due to the challenges of winning the peace in post-Saddam Iraq.7 Although the Joint Chiefs of Staff were focused on operations in the Balkans, General Zinni was committed to exploring how to manage post-Saddam Iraq. Working with war-gaming specialists from Booz Allen Hamilton, the three-day wargame was based on the interagency process with teams representing the National Security Council Principals Committee (NSC/PC), the Deputies Committee, a red team of anti-coalition elements, and a green team of coalition nations.8 It was designed to contend with questions General Zinni raised that covered issues from refugee challenges to establishing a transitional government in Iraq.9 Each wargame scenario would demand that the U.S. lead an intervention to stabilize the country. The war-game included over 70 participants including DoD, the Department of State (DoS), the NSC, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), and the CENTCOM

Arms Control Association, A Chronology of UN Inspections, Arms Control Today, October 2002, accessed April 14, 2010, http://www.armscontrol.org/act/2002_10/iraqspecialoct02. 5 Tony Koltz and Tony Zinni, The Battle for Peace: A Frontline Vision of Americas Power and Purpose, (New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2006), 69. 6 Mark J. Conversino, Operation DESERT FOX: Effectiveness with Unintended Consequences, Air and Space Power Journal, 13 July 2005, accessed April 14, 2010, http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/cc/conversino.html. 7 Mark Frost, Mark Herman, and Robert Kurtz, Wargaming for Leaders: Strategic Decision Making From the Battlefield to the Boardroom, (New York: McGraw-Hill, 2009), 45. 8 Central Command, Desert Crossing Seminar After Action Report, The National Security Archive, 4 December 2006, accessed April 13, 2010, http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB207/index.htm pp. 8. 9 Frost, Herman, and Kurtz, Wargaming, 48.

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Staff.10 The scenarios were designed to get the participants to think through the potential challenges that would need to be confronted. The Desert Crossing Seminar was designed to elicit insights on how to manage change, while minimizing undesirable effects and shaping new environments, in a post-Saddam Iraq.11 The After Action Report (AAR) accurately projected many challenges that arose following the 2003 invasion. Desert Crossing produced key insights organized into several themes. The first dealt with the urgency of political/military planning to deal with the aftermath of a military operation. Sustaining peace often requires more complex planning and sophisticated intervention techniques than do combat operations.12 The AAR recommended a force of 300,000-400,000 personnel, far greater than the force of 180,000 that invaded Iraq in 2003. General Zinni acknowledged the impact of a larger force stating, The first requirement is to freeze the situation, to gain control of the security. To prevent the 'revenge' killings that might occur. To prevent bands or gangs or militias that might not have your best interests at heart from growing or developing.13 Persistent insecurity was a tremendous obstacle to establishing a legitimate government in Iraq following the invasion. The AAR acknowledged that the U.S. did not have an adequate understanding of the agendas of Iraqi opposition groups and it acknowledged the weaknesses found in the exiled Iraqi opposition; the report concluded that Iran could raise the consequence level of an intervention in Iraq.14 Analyst Jason Burke acknowledged the Iranian position five years into the war stating, Tehran's major historical rival has been profoundly weakened, and there is a leadership vacuum in the Islamic world, in no small part due to the loss of credibility with 'the street' of rulers such as King Abdullah of Jordan or the House of al-Saud.15 Ahmad Chalabi was an exiled opposition leader close to the Bush Administration who was invited to the 2004 State of the Union address by First Lady Laura Bush. After falling out with the Bush Administration he remained influential in Iraq. Under Chalabis leadership the Justice and Accountability commission disqualified hundreds of Sunni and secular Shiite candidates for the March 2010 Election that resulted in him being more aligned with the Iranian objectives in Iraq.16 Although former Prime Minister Iyad Allawis cross-sectarian Iraqiya bloc edged out both Shiite electoral blocs, Chalabis actions were clearly at odds with a U.S. policy that urged political reconciliation.17 General Zinni was followed by General Tommy Franks, under

Central Command, Desert Crossing, 8. Ibid, 36. 12 Frost, Herman, and Kurtz, Wargaming, 48. 13 Rebecca. Leung, Gen. Zinni: Theyve Screwed Up. 60 Minutes, 21 May 2004, accessed April 16, 2010, http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/05/21/60minutes/main618896.shtml. 14 Central Command, Desert Crossing, 11. 15 Jason Burke, And the Biggest Winner is: Iran, The Observer, 16 March 2008, accessed April 16, 2010, http://www.guardian.co.uk/theobserver/2008/mar/16/iraqandiran. 16 International Crisis Group, Iraqs Uncertain Future: Elections and Beyond, 25 February 2010, accessed April 15, 2010, http://www.crisisgroup.org/en/regions/middle-east-north-africa/iraq-syrialebanon/iraq/094-iraqs-uncertain-future-elections-and-beyond.aspx. 17 Khalid Al-Ansari, Iraqs PM Says Next Government has to Include Sunnis, Washington Post 16 April 2010, accessed April 19, 2010, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2010/04/16/AR2010041601326.html.
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whose leadership the Desert Crossing plan for invading Iraq was neglected and even disparaged as outmoded.18 Adapting from Unsuccessful Approaches in Iraq In October of 2005 General Petraeus assumed command of the Combined Arms Center (CAC) in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He has been leading the MultiNational Security Transition Command-Iraq (MNSTC-I) that focused on developing the capabilities of Iraqi Security Forces (ISF). That experience combined with his successful command of the 101st Airborne Division in Mosul during the invasion of Iraq in 2003, placed him in a unique position to drive change through doctrinal development and military education. General Petraeus led the charge to develop a capacity to wage counterinsurgency (COIN) warfare in the U.S. military. The need was urgent. Kalev Sepp, a retired Army Special Forces officer who was teaching at the Naval Postgraduate School had recently returned from Iraq after conducting an assessment on how well U.S. commanders grasped COIN principles. His troubling conclusion was twenty percent of them got, sixty percent were struggling, and twenty percent were trying to fight a conventional war.19 Jerome C. Glenn, the Director of the Millennium Project, writes how vision is utilized to describe the future condition that one would seek to create and that such visions often emerge from those seasoned in a particular field who argue for a particular set of developments.20 General Petraeus may have had such a thought on his mind as an Information Operations conference was taking place at Fort Leavenworth in December 2005. During this conference the writing team for what would become the COIN manual was assembled and the critical ideas that would fill the manual were identified. Conrad Crane is a retired U.S Army Lieutenant Colonel (LtCol) with a PhD in History from Stanford University and was a West Point classmate of General Petraeus.21 Crane led the writing team of academics and veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; the drafts were to be completed in just two months as time was of the essence in turning around the war in Iraq. In February 2006 a unique public conference was co-sponsored by General Petraeus and the Combined Arms Center along with Sarah Sewall, the Director of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at Harvard University. The draft of the COIN Manual was discussed by the 135 experts on irregular warfare in attendance; they included military officers, all relevant U.S. government agencies, allied government and military personnel, human rights advocates, diplomats, development experts, and a small number of seasoned journalists.22 David Kilcullen, a retired Australian Army Lieutenant-Colonel, was in attendance representing the Department of State. He would be forced to leave early in response to the news coming out of Iraq that the al-Aaskariyya shrine in Samarra, one of the most

Thomas E. Ricks, The Gamble: General David Petraeus and the American Military Adventure in Iraq, 2006-2008 (New York: The Penguin Press, 2009), 135. 19 Ricks, The Gamble, 25. 20 Jerome C. Glenn, Genius Forecasting, Intuition, and Vision, Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon Ed. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0. 2009, Ch. 25, 4-5. 21 U.S. Army/U.S. Marine Corps, Counterinsurgency Filed Manual (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007), xvi. 22 David Kilcullen, The Accidental Guerilla: Fighting Small Wars in the Midst of a Big One. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2009), 119.

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important mosques in Shia Islam, had been bombed.23 Eliot Cohen of Johns Hopkins University attended the conference and reflected that he thought the most interesting thing was the range of attendees, which spoke volumes about Petraeus.24 This vetting process was essential to ensure the manual would stand up to criticism and to build broad support; the human rights advocates objected to ambiguous language related to harsh interrogations that were ultimately removed.25 While the manual was being refined, Eliot Cohen, Conrad Crane, LtCol Jan Horvath, and LtCol John Nagl gave an indication of the dramatic shift taking place in a Military Review article entitled, Principles, Imperatives, and Paradoxes of Counterinsurgency. As violence escalated in Iraq as sectarian strife grew following the Samarra mosque bombing, the authors argued that counterinsurgents achieve the most meaningful success by gaining popular support and legitimacy for the host government, not by killing insurgents.26 This would be a dramatic departure from the intense, kinetic operations conducted by U.S. forces such as both battles for Fallujah in 2004, which drew comparisons to the 26-day battle in Hue City during the Tet Offensive of 1968.27 As a result of such intense fighting many units were operating with an emphasis on force protection, staying on large forward operating bases well removed from the Iraqi population. COIN theorists argued that counterinsurgents gain ultimate success by protecting the populace rather than utilizing risk-averse approaches that separate them from the people.28 This required U.S. forces to conduct presence patrols and develop critical rapport with the population in order to understand social needs. Although the population-centric approach emphasizes providing security for citizens and carrying out civic reconstruction, COIN requires relentless targeting of extremists to isolate them from the population.29 David Kilcullen was in Iraq in March 2006 to evaluate the fallout from the Samarra Mosque bombing and to provide guidance to U.S. forces carrying out complex operations in theatre. Upon his return to Washington he wrote a piece called Twenty-Eight Articles: Fundamentals of Company-level Counterinsurgency. He emphasized practices at the tactical level such as adjusting to the media scrutiny that forces operating in this challenging environment faced, to practising armed social work while ensuring that the initiative was maintained above all else.30 As the article was read across the U.S. military, Conrad Crane circulated the updated draft of the COIN manual across the Army and Marine Corps. The extensive feedback was incorporated into the final version and reflected a desire to embrace this new approach.
Sam Knight, Al-Askariya shrine: 'Not just a major cathedral', Times of London, 22 February 2006, accessed April 17, 2010, http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/iraq/article733713.ece. 24 Ricks, The Gamble, 24. 25 Ibid, 25. 26 Eliot Cohen et al., Principles, Imperatives, and Paradoxes of Counterinsurgency, Military Review, March-April 2006, accessed April 18, 2010, http://www.usgcoin.org/docs1/MilitaryReview_2006-MarApr.pdf. 27 Robert D. Kaplan, Five Days in Fallujah, The Atlantic, July-August 2004, accessed April 19, 2010, http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2004/07/five-days-in-fallujah/3450/. 28 Cohen et al., Principles. 29 Mark Bowden, The Professor of War, Vanity Fair, May 2010, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2010/05/petraeus-201005. 30 David Kilcullen, Twenty-Eight Articles: Fundamentals of Company-Level Counterinsurgency, March 2006, accessed April 19, 2010, http://usacac.army.mil/cac2/COIN/repository/28_Articles_of_COINKilcullen(Mar06).pdf.
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While this process was taking place throughout the U.S. military, the U.S. Congress was approaching a mid-term election in November with dwindling public support for the War in Iraq. In March 2006 a bipartisan group in Congress appointed the Iraq Study Group (ISG) to assess the situation in Iraq and make policy recommendations. In December 2006 the ISG report recommended that the primary mission of U.S. forces in Iraq should evolve to one of supporting the Iraqi Army, which would take over primary responsibility for combat operations.31 Fred Kagan had been developing another approach that was being studied at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He was a good friend of then-Colonel H.R. McMaster as they had taught together at the U.S. Military Academy. Kagan was impressed with how McMasters 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment (ACR) had conducted counterinsurgency operations in Tal Afar during 2005. Just days after the ISG Report was released, a group of defence scholars and military officers met at AEI to examine the alternative military approach. Officers from McMasters 3rd ACR participated in the scenario along with retired General Jack Keane, former Vice Chief of Staff of the Army who was in close communication with General Petraeus.32 The 3rd ACR officers had applied population-centric COIN in Tal Afar and the exercise wanted to examine how that approach would work in other Iraqi cities, especially Baghdad.33 Kagan and his Iraq Planning Team at AEI had been utilizing open-source materials to plan where additional brigades could be utilized in concert with the upcoming rotation schedule. The proposed redeployment of forces to better protect the Iraqi populace would be validated by the insights from the 3rd ACR officers based on their experience in Tal Afar.34 Utilizing unclassified maps and images, the group determined the size of the unit needed to secure specific neighbourhoods. Michel Godet raised the matter of asking the right questions and identifying key variables at the heart of scenario planning.35 The seminar studied questions such as the utility of deploying a battalion-sized unit in Adhamiya, an area in north Baghdad where Sunni and Shia citizens lived in mixed neighbourhoods. Kagan explained that the purpose of this operation is to reduce sectarian violence to levels low enough to permit political and economic development, reconciliation, and the recruitment and training of an Iraqi Army and police force with an appropriate regional and sectarian balance.36 General Keane who had been serving on the Defense Policy Board and had access to current intelligence, was astounded by the level of detail they had compiled and how it corresponded with what he knew from classified briefings.37 He brought the plan to the highest levels within the American Government. When Keane and Kagan briefed General Kody, Vice Chief of Staff of the Army, the only adjustment to the projected deployments was a three-week shift in one of the

Iraqi Study Group, Iraq Study Group Report, December 2006, accessed April 20, 2010, http://media.usip.org/reports/iraq_study_group_report.pdf, 7. 32 Bob Woodward, The War Within: A Secret White House History 2006-2008, (London: Pocket Books, 2008), 277. 33 Ricks, The Gamble, 95. 34 Ibid. 96. 35 Godet, Creating Futures, 115. 36 Frederick W. Kagan, Choosing Victory: A Plan For Success in Iraq, American Enterprise Institute, January 2007, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.aei.org/docLib/20070111_ChoosingVictoryupdated.pdf, 13. 37 Woodward, The War Within, 277.

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brigades timeframes.38 When President Bush announced the new strategy in January, General Petraeus took command of Multi-National Forces Iraq (MNF-I) with David Kilcullen as his senior COIN advisor. When Ambassador Ryan Crocker arrived in March the new leadership was in place. The U.S. began implementing a population-centric approach articulated in the new COIN manual and changing the course of the war. Conclusion The DoD has a tremendous responsibility to provide policy-makers with the best military advice and to be ready to conduct difficult operations in pursuit of U.S. policy objectives. Strategic foresight can provide critical insights, particularly as certain courses of action are studied. When conducting the simulation of Desert Crossing, key stakeholders were able to test assumptions and gain a better grasp of the consequences that an invasion of Iraq would have. National Security Advisor Sandy Berger responded to the idea of a U.S. invasion of Saddam Husseins Iraq at that time stating the only sure way for us to affect his departure now would be to commit hundreds of thousands of American troops to fight on the ground inside Iraq. I do not believe that the costs of such a campaign would be sustainable at home or abroad.39 Mindsets and biases are a considerable challenge for those charged with providing strategic foresight as well as for those with responsibility for policy. In the lead-up to the War in Iraq, the Bush Administration was accused of the dangerous practice of groupthink. Following psychologist Irving Janus, Bush Administration officials were thought to have illusions of invulnerability leading to excessive optimism and were marked by collective efforts to rationalize leading decisionmakers to discount warnings that might otherwise force them to reconsider.40 The expectations in engaging in this invasion of Iraq failed to recognize the severe difficulties that would emerge. As Winston Churchill wrote, the statesman who yields to war fever must realize that once the signal is given, he is no longer the master of policy but the slave of unforeseeable and uncontrollable events.41 Such shortcomings would only begin to be gradually rectified in late efforts to deal with post-Saddam Iraq led by General Petraeus. The process of updating the COIN manual was bolstered by engaging a much wider range of stakeholders and experts. It took tremendous leadership to carry out this form of the Delphi method, particularly the February 2006 conference that engaged such a broad audience. Conrad Crane spoke of his mental and physical exhaustion after facilitating this process.42 This wider engagement was critical to the development of the COIN manual and lead to a much richer doctrinal publication. When the group at AEI met to examine a population-centric approach, officers from the 3rd ACR would red-team the planning that is, to look at the proposed operation from the enemys point of view.43 This collaboration led to the theories of
Ricks, The Gamble, 97. Sandy Berger, Change Will Come to Iraq, Speech to the National Press Club, 23 December 1998, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/berger2.htm. 40 Karen J. Alter, Is Group-Think Driving Us to War? The Boston Globe, 16 September 2002, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.grailwerk.com/docs/bostonglobe8.htm. 41 David Sanger, The Inheritance: The World Obama Confronts and the Challenges to American Power. (New York: Three Rivers Press, 2009), vii. 42 Ricks, The Gamble, 26. 43 Ibid, 97.
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scholars being tested by seasoned practitioners that produced a sound concept to present to policy-makers. The strategic planning demands of DoD are extensive and activities such as war-games are critical to training those who will be required to carry out these courses of actions on the ground. Rigorous foresight exercises can provide insights and test critical plans before substantial decisions and resource commitments are made. They should continue to be a critical tool for DoD planning and military advice to policy-makers.

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Bibliography Al-Ansari, Khalid. Iraqs PM Says Next Government has to Include Sunnis. Washington Post 16 April 2010. Accessed April 19, 2010. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wpdyn/content/article/2010/04/16/AR2010041601326.html Alter, Karen J. Is Group-Think Driving Us to War? The Boston Globe. 16 September 2002. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.grailwerk.com/docs/bostonglobe8.htm Arms Control Association. A Chronology of UN Inspections. Arms Control Today. October 2002. Accessed April 14, 2010. http://www.armscontrol.org/act/2002_10/iraqspecialoct02. Berger, Sandy. Change Will Come to Iraq. Speech to the National Press Club. 23 December 1998. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/berger2.htm. Bowden, Mark. The Professor of War. Vanity Fair. May 2010. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2010/05/petraeus-201005. Burke, Jason. And the Biggest Winner is: Iran. The Observer. 16 March 2008. Accessed April 17, 2010. http://www.guardian.co.uk/theobserver/2008/mar/16/iraqandiran. Central Command. Desert Crossing Seminar After Action Report. The National Security Archive. 4 December 2006. Accessed April 13, 2010. http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB207/index.htm pp. 8. Conversino, Mark J. Operation DESERT FOX: Effectiveness with Unintended Consequences, Air and Space Power Journal, 13 July 2005. Accessed April 14, 2010. http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/cc/conversino.html. Eliot Cohen et al., Principles, Imperatives, and Paradoxes of Counterinsurgency. Military Review. March-April 2006. Accessed April 18, 2010. http://www.usgcoin.org/docs1/MilitaryReview_2006-Mar-Apr.pdf. Epstein, Joshua M. Why Model? Santa Fe Institute Working Papers 2008. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.santafe.edu/research/publications/workingpapers/08-09-040.pdf. Fingar, Thomas, Anticipating Opportunities: Using Intelligence to Shape the Future. Reducing Uncertainty: Intelligence and National Security, Lecture 3, FSI Stanford, CISAC Lecture Series, October 21, 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://iis-db.stanford.edu/evnts/5859/lecture_text.pdf. Frost, Mark, Mark Herman, and Robert Kurtz. Wargaming for Leaders: Strategic Decision Making From the Battlefield to the Boardroom. New York: McGrawHill, 2009. Glenn, Jerome C. Genius Forecasting, Intuition, and Vision. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. Gordon Ed. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0. 2009. Ch. 25. Godet, Michel. Creating Futures: Scenario Planning as a Strategic Management Tool. Paris: Economica, 2006.

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International Crisis Group. Iraqs Uncertain Future: Elections and Beyond. 25 February 2010, Accessed April 15, 2010. http://www.crisisgroup.org/en/regions/middle-east-north-africa/iraq-syrialebanon/iraq/094-iraqs-uncertain-future-elections-and-beyond.aspx. Iraqi Study Group. Iraq Study Group Report. December 2006. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://media.usip.org/reports/iraq_study_group_report.pdf. Kagan, Frederick W. Choosing Victory: A Plan For Success in Iraq. American Enterprise Institute. January 2007. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.aei.org/docLib/20070111_ChoosingVictoryupdated.pdf. Kaplan, Robert D. Five Days in Fallujah. The Atlantic. July-August 2004. Accessed April 19, 2010. http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2004/07/fivedays-in-fallujah/3450/. Kilcullen, David. The Accidental Guerilla: Fighting Small Wars in the Midst of a Big One. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009. Kilcullen, David. Twenty-Eight Articles: Fundamentals of Company-Level Counterinsurgency. March 2006. Accessed April 19, 2010. http://usacac.army.mil/cac2/COIN/repository/28_Articles_of_COINKilcullen(Mar06).pdf. Knight, Sam. Al-Askariya shrine: 'Not just a major cathedral.' Times of London. 22 February 2006. Accessed April 17, 2010. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/iraq/article733713.ece. Leung, Rebecca. Gen. Zinni: Theyve Screwed Up. 60 Minutes. 21 May 2004. Accessed April 16, 2010. http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/05/21/60minutes/main618896.shtml. Ricks, Thomas E. The Gamble: General David Petraeus and the American Military Adventure in Iraq, 2006-2008. New York: The Penguin Press, 2009. Sanger, David. The Inheritance: The World Obama Confronts and the Challenges to American Power. New York: Three Rivers Press, 2009. Tony Koltz and Tony Zinni. The Battle for Peace: A Frontline Vision of Americas Power and Purpose. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2006. U.S. Army/U.S. Marine Corps. Counterinsurgency Filed Manual. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007. Woodward, Bob. The War Within: A Secret White House History 2006-2008. London: Pocket Books, 2008.

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FRAMING THE FUTURE FOR ASEAN


Loh Woon Liang Introduction The Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) celebrated its 40th Anniversary in 2007. Some consider this to be a remarkable achievement, considering ASEANs modest beginnings within a South East Asia neighbourhood that has suffered long periods of instability. Moving forward, ASEAN plans to create an ASEAN Community, comprising the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC), ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC). The successful achievement of this vision would be indications of stability and growth in the region. To do so, ASEAN has a roadmap from 2009 to 2015 to build a meaningful ASEAN community. It is the purpose of this paper to answer the central question: Can the ASEAN community be built successfully by 2015? This paper will adopt Sohail Inayatullahs three frames of reference as approach to the future and thus ask the central question according to the predictive, interpretive, and critical frames.1 The analysis will focus on the security and economic aspects. The strategic anticipation thus provided on this issue can inform national policy-making on the likely image of ASEANs future in each frame; either the present continues, collapses, reverts to a prior state, or transforms.2 The main argument for this paper is that ASEANs present push for integration will continue and that ASEAN is likely to become the meaningful community it envisages. The conclusion will acknowledge possible biases in the analysis and observations for each frame. Predictive Inayatullahs predictive frame attempts to predict and control the future, with the view that the universe is by and large stable with discernable laws.3 In the predictive approach, empirical data and theory are key, while time is viewed as linear and not appropriate for critical evaluation. The expected outcome of the predictive frame, according to Inayatullah, is that the present will continue things will go up, as James Dator puts it, an example of which would be continued growth.4 Linear thinkers are usually optimistic, believing that despite contradictions and minor evolutions the general pattern is progress. As Inayatullah puts it society marches on either through technology, capital accumulation, innovation, or the pull of God.5 The predictive frame views rules as already being laid out, emphasizes data and theories, and assumes that things generally stay in place. Aligning to it, the variables for the predictive frame used in this paper are based on the blueprint for the ASEAN community, as well as relevant empirical data associated with ASEAN. The vision for the ASEAN community is founded on the backbone of the ASEAN
Sohail Inayatullah, From Who am I to When am I? Framing the Time and Shape of the Future, Futures, 25(3) 1993: 235-253. 2 Ibid. 3 Inayatullah, From Who am I. 4 James Dator, and Sharon Rodgers, Alternative Futures for the State Courts of 2020, (Chicago: American Judicature Society, 1991). 5 Inayatullah, From Who am I.
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Charter signed on 20 November 2007. Once the ratification process of the Charter is completed amongst member states, ASEAN will become a formal institution whose members are legally bounded to fulfil their obligations to one another and to ASEAN6. Naturally, even the best plans can fail especially when external factors evolve unexpectedly in the course of fulfilling the ASEAN vision. The APSC is envisaged to have three key characteristics: (1) a rules-based community of shared values and norms; (2) a cohesive, peaceful, stable, and resilient region with shared responsibility for comprehensive security; and (3) a dynamic and outward-looking region in an increasingly integrated and interdependent world.7 The APSC is built upon existing rules found in ASEAN political instruments such as the Declaration on Zone of Peace, Freedom and Neutrality (ZOPFAN), the Treaty of Amity and Co-operation in South East Asia (TAC) and the Treaty on the Southeast Asian Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ). Data on ASEANs military capabilities and expenditures support the vision of APSC. ASEAN militaries and their weapon purchases are demonstrations of regime legitimacy, national sovereignty, and virility rather than demonstrative of preparing for large-scale invasions.8 Moreover in recent times, ASEAN armed forces have mainly been engaged in irregular wars against insurgents and drug traffickers, as well as Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) operations. Owning to economic woes and internal security problems, most of the ASEAN states (except Singapore) have slashed defence expenditures, weapons procurement, and force modernization.9 In building an outward looking region, ASEAN has established security fora, such as the ASEAN Plus One, ASEAN Plus Three and the East Asia Summit with many non-regional countries. Critically, the APSC is not meant to function as a military alliance similar to NATO.10 Therefore, thorny issues such as human rights, non-traditional security, and democracy that have threatened to obstruct ASEAN growth and integration are expected not to impede the progress towards APSC. As Inayatullah articulates in the Predictive frame, the progress formula has been found and the only problem is staying the course. Yet, ASEANs progress along this course can be challenged when the external security environment changes, particularly in Asia. For example, conflicts in the South China Sea and the Korean peninsula over deep-seated issues would be likely to shift attention and initiative away from the ASEAN community. On the economic aspect, the AECs vision, as stated in the blueprint, is based on four key characteristics: first, a single market and production base; second, a highly competitive economic region; third, a region of equitable economic development, and fourth, a region fully integrated into the global economy.11 In
Termsak Chalermpalanupap, Institutional Reform: One Charter, Three Communities, Many Challenges, Hard Choices: Security, Democracy and Regionalism in Southeast Asia, Donald K. Emmerson, (Ed.), (Stanford: Walter H. Shorenstein APARC, 2008), 101. 7 ASEAN Secretariat, ASEAN Political-Security Community blueprint, (Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat, June 2009), 2. 8 N.M. Joon, International Cooperation in Regional Security: Non-interference and ASEAN Arms Modernization, B. Moller (ed.), Security, Arms Control and Defence Restructuring in East Asia, (Aldershot, 1998). 9 Richard Sokolsky, Angel Rabasa, & Richard Neu, The Role of Southeast Asia in U.S. Strategy Toward China, RAND, 2001, 54. 10 Chalermpalanupap, Institutional Reform, 112. 11 ASEAN Secretariat, ASEAN Economic Community blueprint, Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat, January 2008, 6.
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making a single market, the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) has been virtually established and member countries have made significant progress in the lowering of intra-regional tariffs through the Common Effective Preferential Tariff (CEPT) Scheme.12 In terms of competitiveness, ASEANs Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and GDP per capita have grown annually between 2001 and 2008.13 At the same time, total trade based on the 2008 level has increased about 2.2 times between 1998 and 2008 to reach a value of U.S.$1.7 trillion. Additionally, foreign direct investments have also grown 2.6 times since 1998 to U.S.$59 billion in 2008. In terms of economic equitability and global integration, intra-ASEAN trade has grown steadily in the same period to make up 26.8% of total trade in 2008; trade dependency data also demonstrates a high level of integration with the global economy. While the empirical data indicates a growing ASEAN economy destined for the AEC it envisions, two key issues might derail the progress. First, the rapid opening up of the ASEAN market to larger and developed economies could stimulate ASEAN to work faster on its regional market. Yet, the fledgling ASEAN economies could be overexposed, draining resources from improving domestic markets. Second, no central authority is assigned to build the AEC.14 In fact, most of the bilateral agreements with external markets are negotiated at the national level, with hardly any ASEAN involvement. Overall, despite plausible exogenous challenges, the Predictive frame show positive signs for the establishment of the APSC and AEC by 2015. Interpretive According to Inayatullah, the Interpretive frame for the future examines how different cultures, cosmologies, and discourses approach and create the future15. In contrast to the Predictive frame, the Interpretive frame views laws as being culturally and historically specific and not necessarily universal. According to the Interpretive frame, values inform data and theory. Further, the Interpretive concept of time is constructed differently by various cultures and historical epistemes in a cyclical time that varies according to different cosmologies. The cyclical time is generally a pessimists view of the future, and Inayatullah understands it to be a version of the Return of the Past scenario. In other words, outcomes in the Interpretive frame are likely to collapse and history will repeat itself. The Interpretive frame is often referred to as historical or cultural, which will also form our variables. Historically, ASEAN experienced two distinct periods of turbulence and confidence. In the period of turbulence that began just prior to the formation of ASEAN in 1967, the region was embroiled in bilateral tensions and internal unrest. Indonesia was engaged in border clashes with Malaya and then in Konfrontasi with the Federation of Malaysia. In 1965, Singapore separated from the Federation it had joined two years earlier. The Philippines, disputing Malaysias claims on Sabah, refused to acknowledge the Federation until 1966. Finally, the Vietnam War escalated with the United States full-scale participation in 1965. The Philippines and Thailand sided with South Vietnam and even had contingents of
Extracted from the ASEAN website, accessed on February 1, 2010, http://www.aseansec.org/19585.htm. 13 ASEAN Secretariat, ASEAN Community in Figures ACIF 2009, Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat, February 2010, 3-4. 14 Chalermpalanupap, Institutional Reform, 107. 15 Inayatullah, From Who am I.
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troops fighting in Vietnam. The insecurity experiences of Southeast Asia motivated the five founding countries (or ASEAN-5 16) to work together to transform the region into one in which regional peace would allow member states to concentrate on national development. It was this desire that underpins ASEANs strong emphasis on non-interference and a consensus-based approach.17 After the founding of ASEAN in Bangkok in 1967, the nature of such cooperation became institutionalized in the TAC that was signed at the first ASEAN Summit in Bali in 1976. In the second period of confidence that followed the 1976 Summit, ASEAN enjoyed a relatively peaceful co-existence with other Southeast Asian states and security from external threats. The end of the Vietnam War did not open the floodgates for communist ascendance that ASEAN had anticipated and prepared against in the wake of the victory of communist forces in Vietnam. Instead, ASEAN-5 was shielded from external aggressions while having to deal with internal communist insurgencies. This allowed ASEAN-5 to sustain economic growth and welcome foreign investments, particularly the Tiger Economies of Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia.18 Furthermore, ASEANs solidarity was strengthened by its diplomatic resistance to Vietnams occupation of Cambodia in the 1980s. Meanwhile Brunei joined in 1984. Consequently, the strong economic growth as well as the respect for national sovereignty attracted Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, and finally Cambodia to join ASEAN during the late 1990s. Occasional bilateral disputes internally (e.g. border conflicts between Cambodia and Thailand), as well as unresolved disputes involving external states (e.g. ownership of the Spratly Islands), became the motivations for ASEAN to engage in confidence building both regionally and externally. This approach is reflected in initiatives such as the Manila Declaration on the South China Sea, the creation of the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF)19 and the opening of accession to the TAC by non-Southeast Asian states20. The key question is whether enough momentum and confidence has been built to propel ASEAN to a new stage of regionalism as articulated in the ASEAN Vision 2020. A collective history of colonial rule, communist threat and arguably now the rise of China, encourages ASEAN member states to enhance cooperation and converge on the idea of a code of conduct non-forceful settlement of disputes, norm-building, and confidence-building measures.21 Yet, a return of the past scenario of inter-state conflicts similar to Vietnams invasion of Cambodia in 1978 cannot be entirely ruled out. Besides formal structures, ASEANs informal practices, that is, its strategic culture, play a significant role in shaping the regional future. The ASEAN Way is the regional strategic culture that includes a desire to seek consensus over confrontation, reliance on bilateral ties, emphasis on informal

ASEAN-5 refers to Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. Malcolm Chalmers, ASEAN and confidence building: Continuity and change after the cold war, Contemporary Security Policy, 18: 1, (1997): 36-56. 18 Asia Market Research: http://www.asiamarketresearch.com/asia/ 19 Forum participants included the ASEAN members, the other Southeast Asian states that were not yet ASEAN members, ASEANs then seven dialogue partners, Papua New Guinea, an ASEAN observer, and China and Russia, then still consultative partners of ASEAN. India became a participant on becoming a dialogue partner in 1996. Mongolia and the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea were admitted in 1999 and 2000. 20 As of April 2008, fourteen non-regional states have signed the TAC. 21 Jing-dong Yuan, China-ASEAN Relations: Perspectives, Prospects and Implications for U.S. Interests, Strategic Studies Institute Publications, Oct 2006, 11.
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structures and personal relationship.22 The formulation of the ASEAN Way has its origins in the 1950s and came into practice in the 1960s, as shown by regional conferences.23 Three characteristics of the ASEAN Way appear detrimental to the long-term development of the ASEAN community. First, ASEANs rigid insistence on non-interference under all circumstances undermines the associations image as a useful regional group that is internationally recognized. Second, consensus building as the only decision-making tool, could indirectly allow members to safeguard national interests above ASEAN interest. Third, the emphasis on informal relationships in agreements as compared to legally defined terms has the danger of the agreement not being able to survive beyond the signing. The main criticism of the ASEAN way, though, lies in its seemingly limited interest in a world that has increasingly been dominated by the forces of globalization.24 This view was underscored when the Asian Financial Crisis in 1997 seemed to condemn the region once and for all to the backwaters of global affairs.25 Yet, the financial crisis also produced a sense of resentment at how East Asias governments had been treated by the United States and by key global governance institutions, notably the IMF.26 This gave further rationale to the ASEAN states to build a specific method of economic development on the ASEAN Way. Constructing on this, ASEANs recent warm economic and security ties with China are due in part to the latters appreciation of the ASEAN Way. Together with integration into the global market and constant dialogues with its trading partners, ASEAN in recent years has begun to display influence in global affairs. Most notably as the ASEAN-China linkage improves, the ASEAN Way is beginning to prove its effectiveness and even present a significant alternative to the Western-only approach to global governance.27 Critical Inayatullahs Critical frame is focused on countering the categorizations used to construct the future by asking what the particular social costs for any approach or view of the future are.28 The Critical frame views intelligibility as clearly problematic since the universe is constituted by our knowing acts. The theory-data-values triangular relationship is challenged in the critical frame since data is no longer independently real. Hence, the Critical frame sets out to ask tough questions that challenges the norm and upset the balance of power. The objective is to depart from current understandings and remove the future from the pre-determined history. Therefore the Critical frame articulates the future as a combination of continued growth and return to the past, linear and cyclical, and of empirical and history, otherwise transformational. To satisfy the Critical frame, two wildcard scenarios or Grey Swan events that could happen to ASEAN in the future are considered. The understanding of the Grey
Desmond Ball, Strategic Culture in the Asia-Pacific Region, Security Studies, 3, 1, Autumn 1993: 4647. 23 K.R. Narayanan, The 50th anniversary of Panchsheel, Chinese Journal of International Law 3(2), (2004): 36972. 24 Richard Stubbs, The ASEAN alternative? Ideas, institutions and the challenge to global governance, The Pacic Review, 21:4, December 2008: 460. 25 Ibid. 26 R. Higgott, The Asian economic crisis: a study in the politics of resentment, New Political Economy 3(3), (1998): 33356. 27 Stubbs, The ASEAN alternative? 451468. 28 Inayatullah, From Who am I.
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Swan begins from Talebs description of Black Swan events that have three attributes.29 First, as an outlier event, it moves beyond regular expectations and is something that nothing in the past can point to as a possibility. Second, the events occurrence has an extreme impact. Third, it becomes explainable after the event. In tandem, Grey Swans are rare but expected events, which can be used to anticipate the future. Arguably, wildcards provide the necessary questions to challenge the existing conditions and distance ourselves from our known realms; they will thus be useful in our understanding of the future within the Critical frame. For this purpose, a nuclear-armed Myanmar and a major pandemic outbreak in the region are used as two wildcards. In the first wildcard scenario, any country that becomes armed with nuclear weapons would instantly destabilize the region to which it belongs. The consequences would be multiplied if the country were Myanmar one of the poorest countries in the world, run by a military dictatorship and politically isolated for most of its recent history. In August 2009, speculation about Myanmar's nuclear activities surfaced after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stated that the U.S. was concerned about the possibility that North Korea was providing clandestine nuclear assistance to Myanmar.30 This was coupled by the uncovering of evidences such as aerial photos of a secret reactor in Myanmar, sighting of a North Korean freighter suspected of carrying nuclear materials heading towards Myanmar and the arrests of a North Korean and two Japanese nationals for allegedly trying to export a magnetic measuring device to Myanmar that could be used to develop missiles.31 The second wildcard event is based on studies released by the World Health Organization (WHO) identifying the Asia-Pacific region as a potential epicentre of future infectious diseases, similar to the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and avian influenza.32 Although pandemic response plans are in place, the impact on ASEAN countries would be worsened by the inability to develop a vaccine, high mortality rates and large population displacements across borders. The two scenarios even though unlikely, are threat multipliers that would cause multi-faceted damages to ASEAN politically, economically and socially. How then to deal with wildcard scenarios? Taleb says that one should forget about full predictability and be able to exploit the inherent unpredictability by being prepared.33 He goes on to suggest the need to focus on the consequences (which you can know) rather than the probability (which you cannot know). In that case, even if the Grey Swan event does not materialize exactly as anticipated, one is able to mitigate the threat and survive it. For ASEAN, the association is well prepared and resilient regarding the potential consequences that could be brought about by events like a nuclear Myanmar or regional pandemics because of institutionalized ideas. Stubbs identified five institutional ideas espoused by ASEAN the importance of neutrality, the equality of nations in terms of non-interference, peaceful settlement of disputes, emphasis on informality and non-confrontation, and finally promoting
Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable, (London: Penguin Books, 2007), xviii. 30 Mark Hibbs Bonn, IAEA probes Myanmar data, discourages new research reactors, Nuclear Fuels, 34:16, 10 August 2009: 3. 31 Fears rise for Myanmar's nuclear ambitions, Hobart Mercury (Australia), 22 July 2009. 32 N.M. Ferguson, D.A. Cummings & S. Cauchemez, Strategies for containing an emerging influenza pandemic in Southeast Asia, Nature, 437:8, (2005): 209-214. 33 Taleb, The Black Swan, 203-6.
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domestic stability and social harmony.34 These grand ideas are rooted in cultural norms and are widely recognized by member states as common grounds for problem solving. Arguably, these ideas are symbolic to ASEAN and are its key organizational strength that would enable it to continue growing through a future that includes Grey Swan scenarios. Conclusion The first part of the conclusion identifies the biases that could mar this paper. The three biases identified are cognitive, cultural, and emotion-induced. Firstly, cognitive bias could affect the analysis gleaned from evaluating evidence (data, theory and values). 35 This is critical for the predictive frame where data is key in the analysis. For example, the writer could have opted to select data that are more familiar and easily accessible. Secondly, the writer is born, bred and educated in the region and hence could be culturally biased in his analysis. Thirdly, related to the second, the writer invariably exudes a pro-ASEAN emotional bias, hence will tend to conclude with a positive future for ASEAN. With the biases laid out, the last part of the paper will present the conclusions from Inayatullahs frames that support the central argument that ASEAN is moving towards a meaningful ASEAN community. Firstly from a Predictive standpoint, evidence from data and theoretical plans provide sufficient proof of ASEANs ability to develop according to its project for an ASEAN community by 2015. The high intensity of security initiatives, dialogue forums and economic integration, demonstrate the current position of ASEAN as favourable to its further growth. In addition, the target set for the ASEAN community is relatively modest, hence achievable within ASEANs abilities. Therefore, continued growth is the likely forecast with the Predictive frame. Secondly, pertaining to the Interpretive frame, the historical experience and culture developed collectively over forty years of security and economic integration places ASEAN on a higher plane that facilitates the next wave of regionalism, especially given the huge push for security and economic integration that took place in the last decade. In addition, with a global orientation starting to shift towards China, ASEANs close relationship with China and global partners suggests that full ASEAN regionalism is plausible. Therefore, even though things within the Interpretive tend to return to the previous state, we contend the contrary for ASEANs future. Finally, on the Critical frame, we conclude that ASEANs institutional ideas transcend present and future challenges to its growth. ASEANs strategic culture anchors regional stability and is key to its resilience towards unexpected and high impact events. In summary, notwithstanding biases, this paper argues that ASEAN is likely to continue its growth into a meaningful community by 2015, based on empirical data, cultural and historical indications.

34 35

Stubbs, The ASEAN alternative? 451468. Richards J. Heuer Jr., Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, Center for the Study of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency, 1999, 111-126.

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Bibliography ASEAN Secretariat. ASEAN Community in Figures ACIF 2009. Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat, February 2010. ASEAN Secretariat. ASEAN Economic Community blueprint. Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat, January 2008. ASEAN Secretariat. ASEAN Political-Security Community blueprint. Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat, June 2009. ASEAN website: http://www.aseansec.org/19585.htm. Bonn, Mark Hibbs. IAEA probes Myanmar data, discourages new research reactors. Nuclear Fuels, 34:16, 10 August 2009. Chalmers, Malcolm. ASEAN and confidence building: Continuity and change after the cold war. Contemporary Security Policy, 18: 1, (1997): 36-56. Dator, James and Rodgers, Sharon. Alternative Futures for the State Courts of 2020. (Chicago: American Judicature Society, 1991). Desmond Ball. Strategic Culture in the Asia-Pacific Region. Security Studies, 3, 1, Autumn 1993. Emmerson, Donald K. (Ed.), Hard Choices: Security, Democracy and Regionalism in Southeast Asia, Stanford: Walter H. Shorenstein APARC, 2008. Ferguson N.M., D.A. Cummings & S. Cauchemez. Strategies for containing an emerging influenza pandemic in Southeast Asia. Nature, 437:8, (2005): 209214. Heuer, Richards J. Jr., Psychology of Intelligence Analysis. Center for the Study of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency, 1999, 111-126. Higgott, R. The Asian economic crisis: a study in the politics of resentment. New Political Economy 3(3), (1998). Inayatullah, Sohail. From Who am I to When am I? Framing the Time and Shape of the Future, Futures, 25(3) (1993): 235-253. Jing-dong Yuan. China-ASEAN Relations: Perspectives, Prospects and Implications for U.S. Interests. Strategic Studies Institute Publications, Oct 2006. Joon N.M. International Cooperation in Regional Security: Non-interference and ASEAN Arms Modernization. B. Moller (ed.), Security, Arms Control and Defence Restructuring in East Asia, Aldershot, 1998. Narayanan, K.R. The 50th anniversary of Panchsheel. Chinese Journal of International Law 3(2), (2004): 36972. Narine, Shaun. Forty years of ASEAN: a historical review. The Pacic Review, 21:4, December 2008: 41129. Sokolsky, Richard, Angel Rabasa, & Richard Neu. The Role of Southeast Asia in U.S. Strategy Toward China, RAND, 2001. Stubbs, Richard. The ASEAN alternative? Ideas, institutions and the challenge to global governance. The Pacic Review, 21:4, December 2008.

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Taleb, Nassim Nicholas. The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable, London: Penguin Books, 2007. Fears rise for Myanmar's nuclear ambitions. Hobart Mercury (Australia), 22 July 2009.

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TYPHOON KETSANA AND THE EFFECTS OF COGNITIVE BIASES IN A GOVERNMENTS STRATEGIC FORESIGHT AND EARLY WARNING CAPABILITY
Gayedelle V. Florendo Introduction Barely five years after the Asian Tsunami and four years after Hurricane Katrina, governments remain severely incapable of anticipating and efficiently responding to natural disasters. The Philippines was caught unprepared when in September 2009 typhoon Ketsana swept the countrys capital and caused record flooding. Approximately 10 million people became victim of flood and/or landslides, with close to 1000 lives lost.1 Total damages were estimated at U.S.$4.38B or what amounts to approximately 2.7 percent of the Philippines GDP.2 Francis Fukuyama wrote that Hurricane Katrina was one of the most fully predictable and scenario tested natural disasters in American history but still did not lead to appropriate preparatory actions...3 Similarly the Philippine government, more than most governments, was well aware of the risks from typhoons and the necessity of preparation to ensure timely and appropriate response. But like the U.S. government with Katrina, it was found especially negligent with Ketsana. Often the excuse that catastrophes are unexpected is offered; but this was not the case here. Indeed, according to Richard Posner, Mankinds predictive ability has progressed as science advances,4 as is absolutely the case with detection capabilities associated with severe weather patterns. However, recent events have shown that anticipating and preparing for the future, even mitigating our blindness, have become increasingly difficult.5 States almost always appear oblivious to the crises that befall them. What accounts for these situations? Far worse, how does one explain not seeing the obvious? This essay examines the role of cognitive biases in a states planning and its leaders ability to effectively identify and anticipate threats, and effect appropriate responses. From a broader perspective, it looks at the impact of cognitive biases on how states determine their priorities. To illustrate this, the article uses as a case study typhoon Ketsana. It begins by defining key concepts, proceeds with a narration of events surrounding Ketsana then examines three key arguments that attempt to explain the Philippine governments poor response to Ketsana. An alternative explanation is then discussed; it argues that more than lapses and deficiencies in disaster response, cognitive biases fundamentally account for the governments failure in anticipating the readily recognizable and high impact threat of Ketsana. The

Inquirer.net, Space Tech Used During Ondoy, Peping, 29 October 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://globalnation.inquirer.net/news/breakingnews/view/20091029232897/Space-tech-used-during-Ondoy-Pepeng. 2 National Disaster Coordination Center, Rising Above and Beyond Ondoy, Peping and Santi: Lessons Learned Workshop, 17-18 December 2009. 3 Francis Fukuyama, The Challenges of Uncertainty, Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Francis Fukuyama Ed. (Brookings Institutions Press: 2007), 1. 4 Richard A. Posner, Thinking About Catastrophe, Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Francis Fukuyama Ed. (Brookings Institutions Press: 2007), 9. 5 Fukuyama, The Challenges of Uncertainty, 1.

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paper then discusses ways to circumvent effects of biases in disaster response, in particular, and a states identification of priority concerns, in general. Defining Strategic Foresight and Warning (SF&W) Strategic foresight is defined as the ability to create and maintain a highquality, coherent and functional forward view, and to use the insights arising in useful ways. For example: to detect adverse conditions, guide policy, shape strategy, and to explore new markets, products and services.6 Being prepared is its ultimate reward, which results in the ability to seize opportunities and to deal more effectively with threats, such as minimizing risks or even preventing certain events from happening.7 One of the ways SF&W illuminates future trajectories is through scenarios defined as narrations about groups of events that illuminate how the future might play out. Well-crafted scenarios help people by changing their assumptions about how the world works.8 Scenarios can also be useful in helping decisionmakers overcome psychological and organizational barriers in managing surprise.9 Meanwhile, warning is defined as an intangible, a theory, a perception, a belief10 the product of reasoning, a hypothesis whose validity cannot be confirmed until it is too late.11 Warnings purpose is to enable the policymaker to make the best possible decisions from the facts and judgements sent to him warning does not exist until it has been conveyed to the policymaker.12 Following Heinonen, SF&W is closely associated with risk anticipation or anticipating situations in which it is possible but not certain that some undesirable event or failure will occur.13 Risk may also refer to an unwanted event, which may or may not occur. Risk and future share similar qualities; they hold a spectrum of possibilities but where only a fraction will be realized. Increased efforts in looking at global changes and exploring alternative futures thus enhance (our) ability to envision and prepare for risks. Risks are also linked to probabilities since alternative futures and scenarios are assessed based on probability. But measuring probability depends on those making the evaluation. Another key trait of risks is uncertainty, what we essentially ascribe the future to be. Thus, knowledge about risk is recognizing lack of knowledge and, as a consequence, proactively anticipating the future. Heinonen further stressed that the value of forecasting is not defined by the way it is realized, but by the impact it will have on strategies, decision-making and, on future state of affairs. At the very least, risk anticipation draws attention to an issue or trend and leads to decisions that eliminate or alleviate the threat in
Richard A. Slaughter, Futures for the Third Millennium, (St. Leonards, NSW, Australia: Prospect Media, 1995). 7 Peter Schwartz, and Doug Randall, Anticipating Strategic Surprise, Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Francis Fukuyama Ed. (Brookings Institutions Press: 2007), 97. 8 P. Wack, The Gentle Art of ReceivingScenarios: Shooting the Rapids, Harvard Business Review (November-December 1985): 2-14. 9 Robert Lempert, Can Scenarios Help Policymakers, Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics. Francis Fukuyama Ed. (Brookings Institutions Press: 2007), 112. 10 Cynthia M. Grabo, Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning, (Lanham: United Press of America, 2004), 14. 11 Ibid. 12 Grabo, Anticipating Surprise, 14 13 For references in this paragraph, except if mentioned otherwise, Sirkka Heinonen, Multidimensional Concept of Risks in Horizon Scanning. Thinking About the Future: Strategic Anticipation and RAHS Singapore: National Security Coordination Secretariat: 2008), 57, 59.
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question. Thus risks can also be rehearsed and a forecast not realized may in fact be valuable. Nonetheless, as risk could also mean opportunities or a catalyst for change that results in improving a system. Therefore, foresight means better preparation for the future - not just reacting to future events but actively impacting the future. Typhoon Ketsana, September 2009 Tropical storm Ketsana (Ondoy) entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on 24 September 2009 and swept across Metro Manila on the morning of 26 September.14 Accroding to the NASA, Ketsana brought a months volume of rain a record of 13.43 inches of rain in just twelve hours, causing widespread flooding.15 The brunt of the deluge hit Manila around 8:00AM. The high level of rainfall was attributed to the interaction between Ketsanas low-level circulation and the southwest monsoon, which runs from June to September in the country. After Ketsana left on 27 September, another typhoon, Parma, entered the PAR, causing massive flooding and landslides in the countrys northernmost provinces. In between, two minor weather disturbances lingered but did not bring as much damages. The foregoing events affected 2,118,367 families or 10,183,609 persons either as victims of flooding and/or landslides while almost a thousand died. The total damage caused by the storm was estimated to be around U.S.$4.38B or approximately about 2.7 percent of the countrys GDP. The devastation caused by Ketsana has prompted individuals and groups to ask why Ketsana caught everyone by surprise. Typhoons are a frequent occurrence in the Philippines, which faces 19 weather disturbances on average each year.16 The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) has three categories to describe the intensity of a tropical cyclone: tropical depression (up to 63 (kilometer per hour (kph)), tropical storm (64-118 kph), and typhoon (exceeding 118 kph).17 The cyclones that preceded Ketsana had maximum sustained surface winds18 of 215 kph or greater and are called "super typhoons"19: for example, typhoons Iliang and Loleng (1998), Harurot (2003), Yoyong in (2004), Paeng, Queenie and Reming in 2006 as well as Egay (2007).20 Except for Egay, all super typhoons were strong enough for PAGASA to raise Public Storm Warning Signal #4.21 But not one caused widespread flooding in Metro Manila the way Ketsana did, swiftly submerging villages in hours and turning highways into rivers. The government drew heavy criticism for its slow and inadequate response. There are three explanations for the states poor response to Ketsana gathered from accounts in the radio, print and television media during and after the storm.

National Disaster Coordination Center, Rising Above and Beyond Ondoy. For the references and facts in this paragraph, see NASA, NASAs TRMM Satellite Sees Tropical Storm Ketsanas Record Flooding in Northern Philippines, 29 September 2009, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/hurricanes/archives/2009/h2009_Ketsana.html 16 Inquirer.net, Space Tech Used During Ondoy. 17 GMA News research, Past Super Typhoons in the Philippines, 2 October 2009, GMA News, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.gmanews.tv/story/173677/past-super-typhoons-in-the-philippines. 18 Ibid. 19 Ibid. 20 Ibid. 21 Ibid.
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What Warning? The first explanation argues that there was a warning of an incoming typhoon but that there was no warning of massive flooding in Metro Manila.22 A look at PAGASAs reports has shown that an hourly public advisory on the strength and direction of typhoon Ketsana had been given using short messaging system, radio, print and television media.23 Days before Ketsana struck, PAGASA also warned that there would be six more cyclones before the year ends.24 It was further shown that basic and applied researches are made in almost all areas of the atmospheric and geophysical sciences.25 This research, in turn, produces flood forecast, real-time weather, status of water reservoirs, and satellite images of flood-prone and floodstricken areas. This is despite the paltry sum that PAGASA had been getting. The National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) Chief said that Doppler radars are also being used.26 The closest reference which could support claims that PAGASA had anticipated and warned of massive flooding is Situation Report No. 127 issued on 26 September at 10:00AM by the NDCC. The advisory, which was issued two days after Ketsana entered the PAR, warned of possible flash floods in Metro Manila. During this time La Mesa Dam, the water reservoir nearest to Metro Manila, had reached a critical level. The NDCC issued subsequent advisories on an hourly basis. There was evidently none issued earlier. The evidence now suggests that sufficient warning on the typhoon and possible flooding had been conveyed by PAGASA, prompting NDCC to issue an advisory. It is clear, however, that it took NDCC until 10:00AM of 26 September 2010 to issue the advisory - hours after several areas had already reported knee-deep floodwaters. Could this failure account for the governments poor response to Ketsana? This brings us to an examination of the governments disaster response mechanism. Poor Disaster Response Mechanism Those who witnessed or experienced Ketsana firsthand lamented the Philippine governments poor response. For example, the emergency teams were deployed several hours after the release of the already delayed flood advisory;28 and disaster response teams only had 13 rubber boats to service 10 million people.29 It is
See, for example, Marlon Ramos, Nikko Dizon, and Edson C. Tandoc Jr. Too Much Rain Too Soon, 27 September 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20090927-227074/Too-much-rain-too-soon. 23 See, for example, GMA News.TV, Ondoy Moves Closer to Catanduanes, 24 September 2009, GMA News, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.gmanews.tv/story/173063/39ondoy39-moves-closerto-catanduanes-pagasa. 24 GMA News.TV, Ondoy Intensifies Into Tropical Storm, 24 September 2009, GMA News, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.gmanews.tv/story/173177/39ondoy39-intensifies-into-tropical-storm-4areas-under-signal-2. 25 Rising Above and Beyond Ondoy. 26 Nikko Dizon, PAGASA upgrade sought after Ondoy hit, 27 September 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/metro/view/20090927227184/PAGASA-upgrade-sought-after-Ondoy-hit. 27 Old NDCC website, accessed April 20, 2010, www.ndc.gov.ph 28 Ibid. 29 Aries Rufo, Gibo Delayed Purchase of Rubber Boats, 12 October 2009, ABS-CBN News, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/10/12/09/teodoro-delayed-purchaserubber-boats.
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argued that the countrys disaster response mechanism is not at all capable of anticipating and responding to disasters. This argument specifically calls attention to: 1) the NDCCs failure to promptly and appropriately consider PAGASAs warnings, particularly, on the possibility of a massive flooding and; 2) the NDCCs and its member agencies failure to consider that a massive flood could occur in Metro Manila. Among the salient provisions30 in establishing NDCC, two points merit attention: 1) the NDCC does not have its own regular budget, and 2) it operates through member-agencies and its networked National, Regional and Local Disaster Coordinating Councils headed by local government chiefs. In Ketsanas case, disaster preparedness and response fell under NDCC, the Office of Civil Defence (OCD) and the local governments. Where funds and acquisition of resources are concerned, the local government units (LGUs) or Local Disaster Coordinating Councils (in Ketsanas case, the Metropolitan Manila Disaster Coordinating Council) - were in a much better position to advise on, prepare for, and respond to forthcoming disasters. But the Local Government Code prohibits the use of calamity funds unless a state of calamity is declared by the NDCC.31 Thus, in the months prior to Ketsana, LGUs may not have been able to use the appropriated funds. This flaw, however, had not been addressed. Rather, it was learned that the OCD had been providing the needed resources due to the Local Government Code prohibition.32 This is despite their limited or lack of operational funds. This, in turn, caused needless delay of the acquisition of resources as the OCD and NDCC would have to go through necessary requests and wait for approval. Given all these, one could readily identify several fault lines plaguing the countrys disaster response (early warning, communication of that warning, and evacuation plans) causing the NDCC and the local government to respond the way they did with Ketsana. Altogether, however, other than identifying which among these fault lines was the main problem, they all point to the possibility that these agencies have been remiss in thinking the unthinkable, which also suggests that there was more to the poor disaster response mechanism in explaining the governments response to Ketsana. Climate Change There were those who argued that the countrys disaster response mechanism -circuitous, handicapped and poorly funded as it is - would not have been able to respond to any severe weather disturbances effectively, considering climate change and what it does to seemingly manageable weather conditions as Ketsana.33 Environmentalists and those who have experienced the effects of
1) State policy on self- reliance among local officials in responding to disasters or emergencies; 2) Organization of disaster coordinating councils from the national down to the municipal level; 3) Statement of duties and responsibilities of the National, Regional and Local Disaster Coordinating Councils; 4) Preparation of the National Calamities and Disaster Preparedness Plan by the Office of the Civil Defense--NDCCs operational arm--and implementing plans by NDCC member-agencies; 5) Conduct of periodic drills and exercises; and 6) authority for government units to program their funds for disaster preparedness activities in addition to the 2% calamity fund as provided for in PD 474 (amended by RA 8185). 31 Rufo, Gibo Delayed Purchase of Rubber Boats. 32 Ibid. 33 See, for example, Nikko Dizon, Ondoy a preview of more disasters to come Atienza, 29 September 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010,
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Ketsana wrote that climate change multiplies the effects or causes it to be very unpredictable.34 Urban planning, garbage management, investment in renewable energy resources and change in lifestyle35 were some of the suggestions made in mitigating extreme weather conditions due to climate change. While all this is sound, to argue that climate change - and the governments and publics limited view of it - had caused it to be ill-prepared for Ketsana is a bit farfetched, if not difficult to prove.36 This argument, nonetheless, highlights the fact that the government and the public have indeed been unprepared. Even as it does so with the purpose of conveniently taking away that blame and directing it to a relatively novel threat as climate change or the more common but overlooked poor urban planning and garbage management. Nonetheless, it has correctly drawn attention to the need to tackle the much bigger or fundamental challenge of climate change, which, when seen through this perspective, dwarfs Ketsana and quite correctly portrays the latter as merely the effect or consequence of several other factors. Consequently, this argument implies going beyond an overhaul of the entire disaster response mechanism and moving into examining how agencies and the public see events, especially disasters, which brings us to an alternative explanation for the governments poor response to Ketsana. Not Only Was it Not Possible, it Also Wasnt a Threat This essay argues that appropriate warning had been given and that the extent and severity of an impending event was sufficiently made known, but that the NDCC, the local governments, and the public did not heed the call primarily for two reasons. First, typhoons had been known to hit and severely impact neighbouring provinces of the countrys capital and not Metro Manila. Second, typhoons are not a valid and priority threat on which the government thinks it should be focusing its meagre resources. This argument, in effect, delves beyond examining PAGASAs capability, the efficiency of disaster response, and the governments and publics response to climate change. It follows, and resonates well, with Richard Posners discussion of Hurricane Katrina, where he identified psychological discomforts, political obstacles, and analytical problems as factors that account for the inability to seriously consider and prepare for catastrophes.37 These claims are made clear by findings of the participants to the Global Futures Forum: Emerging Threats in the 21st Century in 2006, which identified analytical difficulties and challenges from cognitive and
http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20090929-227432/Ondoy-a-preview-ofmore-disasters-to-comeAtienza; Nikko Dizon and Jocelyn Uy, Ondoy exposed flaws in govt disaster system, 09 October 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20091009-229128/Ondoy-exposed-flaws-ingovt-disaster-system ; Gloria Ramos, Lessons from Ondoy, Cebu Daily News, 5 October 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://globalnation.inquirer.net/cebudailynews/opinion/view/20091005-228486/Lessons-from-Ondoy and Augusto Villalon, Ondoys lesson: We must change the way we live, 18 October 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://showbizandstyle.inquirer.net/lifestyle/lifestyle/view/20091018-230792/Ondoys-lesson-We-mustchange-the-way-we-live. 34 Dizon & Uy, Ondoy exposed flaws. 35 Ibid. 36 At the very least, to argue that which happened to explain why it occurred indicates that the underlying reasons behind the governments poor response remain unclear. 37 Posner, Thinking About Catastrophe.

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organizational issues inherent in the individual, organizational and customer levels as the key problem and not necessarily the collection or the lack of information.38 The same framework shall be used in examining how cognitive biases strongly influence individuals, organizations, and officials capability in anticipating and responding to Ketsana. What are these biases? At the individual level, most Metro Manila residents and those involved in disaster response did not think Ketsana would be any different from typhoons that usually batter the country.39 State officials also did not think a weather disturbance was as important and immediate a priority as preventing crime; it thus did not warrant putting personnel on alert and allocating funds from already meagre resources.40 Moreover, there was the general belief among the public that Metro Manila had not seen floods with stronger typhoons in the past and would not do so with a comparably mild typhoon like Ketsana.41 These cognitive biases are also evident at the organizational level. It was clear that organizations responsible for the countrys security and welfare did not perceive typhoons and other environmental hazards as valid and priority threats compared to threats emanating from crime and separatist and insurgent groups.42 If there had been any consideration given to the risk of natural disasters, increased attention by the NDCC (through the supplementing of resources) would have been given to regions prone to natural disasters and not Metro Manila.43 NDCC Chairman and Defence Secretary Teodoro said another problem was that operating agenciesparticularly, the Armed Forces and the Policewere equally hard up with their modest assets apportioned to the policy of crushing terrorism and the communist insurgency by June 2010. Teodoro said the NDCC was also tasksaturated, monitoring conflict-areas in Mindanao, perennial flooding in Cotabato and Compostela Valley, and the restiveness of Mt. Mayon. PAGASA and NDCC also suffer from chronic budgetary constraints. Consequently, this indicates the extent of influence that scientific endeavours have in how the government pursues and prioritizes objectives. When a countrys individuals and organizations have such notions, it becomes clear how, at the policy-making level, the need to respond to an imminent typhoon threat as Ketsana has not been given due attention. It also becomes clear why the need for a more effective mechanism has not been seriously contemplated.44 One wonders why the pessimist or cautionary view, which Fukuyama ascribes to policymakers when thinking about the future, has not engendered the same response to Ketsana or natural disasters, in general. A stubborn refusal to see the obvious because the cautionary view favours prioritizing the more familiar threats such as insurgency and terrorism probably explains such dispositions. Perhaps this also explains why the disaster response mechanism may have been in place for quite some time now, but, as has been the case with previous disasters, this mechanism
CSS/ETH - Global Futures Forum, Emerging Threats in the 21st Century, Strategic Foresight and Warning Seminar Series I report, 9-11 November 2006, Zurich, Switzerland. 39 See, for example, Marlon, Dizon, and Tandoc Jr. Too Much Rain. 40 Dizon and Uy, Ondoy exposed flaws 41 Marlon, Dizon, and Tandoc Jr. Too Much Rain. 42 Dizon and Uy, Ondoy exposed flaws 43 Jaime Laude, Don't blame Teodoro on boat purchase, 15 October 2009, The Philippine Star, accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleid=514329. 44 Ibid.
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has only gone as far as rushing in the middle or after the event had occurred, with only the slightest idea of the damage wrought. In the case of Ketsana, this ad-hoc disaster response mechanism meant not having the power and resources to direct disaster response efforts; having troops belatedly joining rescue missions; having tugboats that could not get to flooded barangays (villages);45 and poor evacuation and restoration efforts. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs on 1 October 2009 reported widespread problems with distribution of relief goods and assistance outside of the 726 evacuation centres (public schools).46 The Philippine National Red Cross also reported insufficient sanitation facilities at evacuation shelters in coping with the volume of people.47 For a country that suffers yearly from typhoons and flooding, water, food, and medicines should already have been stockpiled. Prior identification and preparation of evacuation centres should have also been in place. Managing Cognitive Biases in Disaster Anticipation and Response Woocher emphasises that despite impressive forecasting accuracy Decision-makers do not make more use of early warning information and analysis.48 He argues that the warning-response gap is accepted to be the heart of the problem in preventing conflict and crises.49 Grabo expanded on this when she underlined that too many warning failures are attributable above all to peoples failure in examining their evidence realistically and in drawing conclusions from it rather than to subjective feelings.50 But both Woocher and Grabo also recognize that nobody achieves total objectivity 51 and the only way to circumvent the negative effects of biased views is to manage this inherent condition. Managing cognitive biases essentially includes one or all of the following: enhancing analytic methods and skills through further education and training;52 enabling feedback within and among institutions;53 learning and using analytic tools such as the Delphi Method;54 and increased collaboration with other fields. Enabling imagination, which is one of two necessary pillars of strategic anticipation and foresight,55 is also considered important. Without imagination, as underlined by Gordon, one can only extrapolate trends, which are less than useful in providing the necessary vision for long-term planning.56 To overcome this lack of imagination,

Ibid. UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Tropical Storm Ketsana: Situation Report No. 3, 1 October 2009, www.reliefweb.net 47 Ibid. 48 Lawrence Woocher, The Effects of Cognitive Biases on Early Warning, Paper Presented at the International Studies Association Annual Convention, 29 March 2008 49 Ibid. 50 Grabo, Anticipating Surprise, 40. 51 Ibid. 52 Heuer, Richard J. Jr., Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, Center for the Study of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency, 1999. 53 Glenn, Jerome C., Participatory Methods, The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. 2009, Chapter 23. 54 Gordon, Theodore J., The Delphi Method, The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. 2009, Chapter 4, 2. 55 Glenn, Jerome C., Genius Forecasting, Intuition and Vision, The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. 2009, Chapter 25. 56 Glenn, Genius Forecasting.
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Gordon suggests the use of a complementary set of processes, such as intuitions, prospective, and insights in forecasting and strategic planning.57 In responding to catastrophes, the above named methods could be useful. Enhancing analytic methods and skills through further education and training, enabling feedback within and among institutions, and increased collaboration, among others, would have spelled a great difference in the governments response to Ketsana. At the very least, it would have challenged the way the public, the NDCC and the local governments perceived and prepared for disasters, which PAGASA has not been able to do despite its constant warnings. Resources, in turn, would have been ready. For example, the acquisition of rigid-hull inflatable boats could have been made earlier.58 While NDCC Chief Teodoro approved the purchase as early as March 2009, he opted for regular bidding, thus prolonging procurement.59 Installation of rain gauges and water level devices in Metro Manila60 would have also been made before Ketsana happened. In general, a review of the provisions for disaster response would have been made years ago, alongside efforts at implementing a viable urban development plan, which would prevent danger zones from being developed; controlling the population growth in the metropolis by spreading growth to other regions; investing in a comprehensive drainage plan; and implementing laws pertaining to setbacks and encroachments in danger zones.61 Meanwhile, policy-makers pessimistic or cautionary views of the future and the prohibitions that go with them when dealing with those they consider low priority risks would have been discarded or put to good use. Finally, scientific endeavours would have played a greater role in how the government chooses to pursue and prioritize its objectives. Strategic Anticipation and Setting Governments Priority Concerns If strategic foresight and warning is to be defined the way it had been earlier,62 then the above discussion on managing cognitive biases and opening new perspectives in disaster response (while also preventing pitfalls) makes sense. If being prepared is strategic foresight and warnings ultimate reward, which, as stated earlier, results in the ability to seize opportunities and minimize risks or even prevent certain events from happening, then managing cognitive biases in disaster response would have served its purpose in the case of Ketsana. At the very least, if SF&W means having the government and the publics assumptions challenged and consequently prompting them to manage and prepare for surprises, it would have been worth a try.
Ibid. In the first two months of 2009, 36 incidents of flash floods had been recorded in 31 provinces. As of December 2008, its stock of rubber boats had been depleted to zero. A total of 182 rubber boats were distributed to LGUs and government agencies and NGOs in 2008. Another report of the OCD showed that of the 949 flood-prone municipalities, only 3 percent have been provided with rigid-hull rubber boats. 59 Rufo, Gibo Delayed Purchase. 60 Alcuin Papa, Polls Delayed Storm Alarm System, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 22 July 2010, accessed April 20, 2010, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20100622276910/Polls-delayed-storm-alarm-system. 61 Rowena C. Burgos, Dont Blame God, Blame Urban Planning, 3 October 2009, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://showbizandstyle.inquirer.net/lifestyle/lifestyle/view/20091003-228234/Dont-blame-God-blamebotched-urban-planning.
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The difficult situation that the Philippines faced with Ketsana and the more lamentable realities the catastrophe has revealed are no doubt being addressed. Last February, a law aimed at enhancing disaster management has been enacted, providing for all actions and measures pertaining to all aspects of disaster risk management.63 This includes the creation of a National Disaster Risk Management Framework. The Armed Forces are to come up with a comprehensive plan before 30 June 2010 for massive rescue operations.64 The police have purchased 85 total rubber boats, each costing Php1.7M (approximately U.S.$36,000), of which 21 will be deployed in Metro Manila.65 Other fault lines in disaster response are being examined and addressed. At best, these measures ensure a robust response to another flooding in Metro Manila. In reality, however, these measures are no more valuable in addressing that which it was initially set out to overcome. Even in this regard, another massive failure cannot be discounted as the nature of catastrophes and disasters and the extent of its force invariably remain unknown. If a government intends to anticipate correctly catastrophes or natural disasters and respond to them quite adroitly, it must first seek out, understand, and, more importantly, evaluate risks through clear and able lenses. Earlier in this essay, it was stated that increased efforts at exploring global changes and alternative futures enhance (our) ability to envision and prepare for risks.66 Also, risk anticipation should effectively draw attention to an issue or trend and lead to decisions that either eliminate or alleviate the threat in question.67 The Philippine government cannot afford to again fail in anticipating catastrophes that have the potential of seriously placing any region in the country in grave danger. The case of Ketsana has shown that effective disaster response begins with - and is not complete without - getting out of well-entrenched views or biases when determining priority concerns. In particular, it is finding a delicate balance between pursuing traditional security issues and equally pressing non-traditional concerns, which the country is seriously suffering from. Otherwise, the risk of not being able to anticipate and respond to another catastrophe shall remain; such a situation, if allowed to happen, could readily impact other disasters waiting to happen.

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Juan De la Cruz, NCR priority deployment area of new rubber boats, says PNP-Maritime Group, 22 June 2010, Balita.dot.ph, accessed April 20, 2010, http://balita.ph/2010/06/22/ncr-prioritydeployment-area-of-new-rubber-boats-says-pnp-maritimegroup/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Balita-dot-ph+(balitadot-ph) 64 Marlon Ramos, Be Ready for Big Quake Military Told, 21 June 2010, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, accessed April 20, 2010, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/nation/view/20100621-276772/Beready-for-big-quake-military-told. 65 Ibid. 66 Heinonen, Sirkka, Multidimensional Concept, 57. 67 Ibid, p. 59

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Bibliography World Economic Forum. Conflation of Events and Perfect Storms. Global Risk Report 2006. Burgos, Rowena C. Dont Blame God, Blame Urban Planning. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 3 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010, http://showbizandstyle.inquirer.net/lifestyle/lifestyle/view/20091003228234/Dont-blame-God-blame-botched-urban-planning. CSS/ETH - Global Futures Forum. Emerging Threats in the 21st Century, Strategic Foresight and Warning Seminar Series I report, 9-11 November 2006, Zurich, Switzerland. Davis, Jack, Improving CIA Analytic Performance: Strategic Warning, The Sherman Kent Center for Intelligence Analysis, Occasional Papers: Volume 1, Number 1 De la Cruz, Juan. NCR priority deployment area of new rubber boats, says PNPMaritime Group, Balita.dot.ph, 22 June 2010. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://balita.ph/2010/06/22/ncr-priority-deployment-area-of-new-rubber-boatssays-pnp-maritimegroup/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3 A+Balita-dot-ph+(balita-dot-ph) Dizon, Nikko, and Jocelyn Uy. Ondoy exposed flaws in govt disaster system. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 09 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20091009229128/Ondoy-exposed-flaws-in-govt-disaster-system. Dizon, Nikko. Ondoy a preview of more disasters to come Atienza. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 29 September 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20090929227432/Ondoy-a-preview-of-more-disasters-to-comeAtienza. Dizon, Nikko. PAGASA upgrade sought after Ondoy hit. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 27 September 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/metro/view/20090927227184/PAGASA-upgrade-sought-after-Ondoy-hit. Fergusson, Niall. Global Discontinuities. Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Brookings Institutions Press: 2007. Ch. 3. Fukuyama, Francis. The Challenges of Uncertainty. Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Francis Fukuyama Ed. Brookings Institutions Press: 2007. Fukuyama, Francis. Ed. Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Brookings Institutions Press: 2007. Glenn, Jerome C. Participatory Methods. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0. Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. 2009. Chapter 23.

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Glenn, Jerome C. Genius Forecasting, Intuition and Vision. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology, Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. 2009, Chapter 25. GMA News research. Past Super Typhoons in the Philippines. GMA News, 2 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.gmanews.tv/story/173677/past-super-typhoons-in-the-philippines. GMA News.TV. Ondoy Intensifies Into Tropical Storm. GMA News, 24 September 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.gmanews.tv/story/173177/39ondoy39-intensifies-into-tropicalstorm-4-areas-under-signal-2. GMA News.TV. Ondoy Moves Closer to Catanduanes. GMA News, 24 September 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.gmanews.tv/story/173063/39ondoy39-moves-closer-tocatanduanes-pagasa. Gordon, Theodore J. The Delphi Method. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. 2009. Chapter 4. Gordon, Theodore J. The Real-Time Delphi Method. The Millennium Project: Futures Research Methodology Version 3.0, Ed. Jerome C. Glenn and Theodore J. 2009. Chapter 5. Grabo, Cynthia M. Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning. Lanham: United Press of America, 2004. Heinonen, Sirkka. Multidimensional Concept of Risks in Horizon Scanning. Thinking About the Future: Strategic Anticipation and RAHS Singapore: National Security Coordination Secretariat, 2008. Heuer, Richard J. Jr. Psychology of Intelligence Analysis. Center for the Study of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency, 1999. Inquirer.net. Space Tech Used During Ondoy, Peping. The Philippine Daily Inquirer 29 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://globalnation.inquirer.net/news/breakingnews/view/20091029232897/Space-tech-used-during-Ondoy-Pepeng. Laude, Jaime. Don't blame Teodoro on boat purchase. The Philippine Star, 15 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010, http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleid=514329. Lempert, Robert. Can Scenarios Help Policymakers. Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Francis Fukuyama Ed. Brookings Institutions Press: 2007. Chapter 10. NASA. NASAs TRMM Satellite Sees Tropical Storm Ketsanas Record Flooding in Northern Philippines, 29 September 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/hurricanes/archives/2009/h2009_Ketsan a.html. National Disaster Coordination Center. Rising Above and Beyond Ondoy, Peping and Santi: Lessons Learned Workshop. 17-18 December 2009.

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Papa, Alcuin. Polls Delayed Storm Alarm System. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 22 July 2010. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20100622276910/Polls-delayed-storm-alarm-system. Posner, Richard A. Thinking About Catastrophe. Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Francis Fukuyama Ed. Brookings Institutions Press: 2007. Chapter 2. Ramos, Gloria. Lessons from Ondoy. Cebu Daily News, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 5 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://globalnation.inquirer.net/cebudailynews/opinion/view/20091005228486/Lessons-from-Ondoy. Ramos, Marlon, Nikko Dizon, and Edson C. Tandoc Jr. Too Much Rain Too Soon. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 27 September 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20090927227074/Too-much-rain-too-soon. Ramos, Marlon. Be Ready for Big Quake Military Told. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 21 June 2010. Accessed April 20, 2010, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/nation/view/20100621-276772/Beready-for-big-quake-military-told Rufo, Aries. Gibo Delayed Purchase of Rubber Boats. ABS-CBN News, 12 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://www.abscbnnews.com/nation/10/12/09/teodoro-delayed-purchase-rubber-boats. Sarkesian, Sam C., John Allen Williams, and Stephen J. Cimbala. U.S. National Security: Policymakers, Processes and Politics. Lynne Rienner Publishers, Inc. 2008. Schwartz, Peter and Doug Randall. Ahead of the Curve: Anticipating Strategic Surprise. Blindside: How to Anticipate Forcing Events and Wildcards in Global Politics Francis Fukuyama Ed. Brookings Institutions Press: 2007. Chapter 9. Slaughter, Richard A. Futures for the Third Millennium. St. Leonards, NSW, Australia: Prospect Media, 1995. Steinmueller, Karlheinz. Wild CardsPreparing for the Unpredictable. Thinking About the Future: Strategic Anticipation and RAHS. Singapore: National Security Coordination Secretariat, 2008. UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). Tropical Storm Ketsana: Situation Report No. 3. 1 October 2009. Villalon, Augusto. Ondoys lesson: We must change the way we live. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, 18 October 2009. Accessed April 20, 2010. http://showbizandstyle.inquirer.net/lifestyle/lifestyle/view/20091018230792/Ondoys-lesson-We-must-change-the-way-we-live. Wack, P. The Gentle Art of ReceivingScenarios: Shooting the Rapids. Harvard Business Review (November-December 1985): 2-14.

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Woocher, Lawrence. The Effects of Cognitive Biases on Early Warning. Paper Presented at the International Studies Association Annual Convention, 29 March 2008.

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NAVIGATING UNCERTAINTY: UNDERSTANDING AND APPRECIATING THE ROLE OF THE HUMAN ANALYST
B.C. Tan In an age of increasing complexity, societies around the globe have experienced countless unanticipated shocks that have greatly tested the stability and resilience of social and political structures. While decision-makers throughout history have endured the impacts of unexpected events, the exceedingly high level of interconnectivity in todays global system significantly exacerbates all shocks as they reverberate throughout the world. Therefore in this age when unanticipated shocks have the potential of rapidly snowballing into potentially catastrophic situations, decision-makers can no longer idly accept the risks of an uncertain future. The purpose of strategic warning systems is to provide decision-makers with a systematic and purposeful view of the future so as to reduce the uncertainties presented by the future through the identification of probable threats.1 Through strategic warning systems, decision-makers may enhance their decision-making process through a better anticipation of the impending future. Strategic warning systems are highly complex processes that are complicated by difficult challenges and certain limitations a fundamental challenge is the cognitive limitations of human analysis. This has prompted governments and intelligence agencies that maintain strategic warning systems to increasingly look towards technology as a means to address the analytical limitations within strategic warning frameworks. This essay explores the dynamics of human analysis in strategic warning systems and the role of technology as a complementary tool to human analytical limitations. In order to appreciate the complexity of strategic warning systems, this essay will begin with a chronological description of the strategic warning process. Like most other intelligence methods, strategic warning systems are still fundamentally dependent on human analytical input. This means that strategic warning systems are subject to certain limitations of human analysis such as cognitive deficiencies and other forms of biases, which have profound impact on the accuracy of strategic warning output. The various manifestations of cognitive biases and how they may influence analysis will be examined to explicate the ways by which strategic warning systems are affected by human analytical limitations. A particularly popular belief is that technology might be able to replace the role of human analysis in strategic warning systems.2 This essay will explore the computer-based approach to strategic warning systems, which primarily depends on statistical, knowledge-based and artificial intelligence methods, and more importantly the rate of accuracy expected with this approach. Research conducted on this subject has indicated that the computer-based approach to strategic warning has failed to result in sufficiently reliable outputs.3 This essay will argue that while human analysis is subject to potential cognitive distortions, it provides the necessary
Steve Chan, The Intelligence of Stupidity: Understanding Failures in Strategic Warning, The American Political Science Review, Vol. 73, No. 1 (Mar., 1979) : 171-180. 2 Petya I. Ivanova & Todor D. Tagarev, Indicator space configuration for early warning of violent political conflicts by genetic algorithms, Annals of Operations Research, 97(1-4) (2000): 287. 3 Ibid.
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elements of creativity and capacity to analyse such complex issues with the necessary depth and contextual understanding that technology simply cannot replicate. Therefore technology alone simply cannot replace a human analyst in strategic warning and foresight. However, technology can be used intelligently to provide solutions to minimise cognitive deficiencies. Therefore in order to improve strategic warning systems, governments should be seeking pragmatic methods to overcome human analytical challenges. As the human analytical component simply cannot be replaced, technology should only be applied as a supplementary tool that can aid the process and should be designed in ways that support and improve human analysis. What are Strategic Warning Systems? Strategic warning is defined by Kenneth Knight as a notification of impending events, activities, and/ or conditions, whether strategic or tactical in nature that may adversely affect national security interest.4 In order to qualify as a strategic warning, certain criteria have to be met. Firstly, a warning must have a likelihood assessment such as the probabilities of an impending attack. Secondly, a warning must have an impact assessment of the probable magnitude of the event. Thirdly, a strategic warning must have an estimated timeline or timeframe; a general threat in the undefined infinite future is insufficient to qualify as a strategic warning. And finally, a warning must be delivered to decision-makers in a way that actions can be taken to mitigate the threat. It should be noted here that advance lead-time sufficient to execute a counteraction is critical in strategic warning.5 Therefore, in order for strategic warning to be effective, the warning product must be credible in assessing the contingent threats and has to provide sufficient lead time for the decision-maker to act against these dangers.6 Processes of Strategic Warning Systems The processes of strategic warning systems are highly complex and elaborate. Helene Lavoix defined the strategic warning system as a cyclical process, composed of the following chronological steps, accomplished according to defined objectives and strategy: 1) identification of additional themes and issues through exploratory foresight; 2) definition of identified warning issues and corresponding indicators; 3) monitoring of warning issues through indicators; 4) definition of warning problems and related indicators; 4) surveillance of warning problems; 5) production of warning output; and 6) dissemination of the warning product to the decisionmakers.7 While bearing some similarities with a complex version of the traditional intelligence cycle, a strategic warning process cycle discerns itself as a proactive intelligence process as opposed to the reactive process of targeted and guided
4

Kenneth Knight, Focused on foresight: An interview with the U.S.s national intelligence officer for warning, McKinsey Quarterly (Sept 2009), accessed on June 30, 2010, http://www.mckinseyquarterly.com/Public_Sector/Management/Focused_on_foresight_An_interview_ with_the_U.S._national_intelligence_officer_for_warning_2415. 5 Lawrence Woocher, The Effects of Cognitive Biases on Early Warning, Paper Presented at the International Studies Association Annual Convention, 29 March 2008. 6 Jack Davis, Improving CIA Analytic Performance: Strategic Warning, Sherman Kent Center for Intelligence Analysis, Occasional Papers, Vol.1, Number 1 (Sept 2002). 7 Helene Lavoix, Early Warning and 21st Century Challenges, Paper presented at the 5th meeting of the Club of Budapest, European Commission, Bucharest, February 2009.

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collection, analysis, and dissemination associated with the traditional intelligence cycle. Warning According to Objectives In the limitless world of threats, risks and vulnerabilities, even the most ambitious and technologically advanced strategic warning system is incapable of monitoring and tracking each and every single threat. While the outside in approach that attempts to scan activities with a 360 degree focus seeks to minimize blind spots, the resulting issue of information overload has convinced most governments to adopt a more focused scan of a predetermined set of interests.8 Therefore a critical component of a strategic warning process is the requirement to develop a set of objectives that eventually defines and shapes the threat selection process. For instance, the universal primal objective of any biological organism is survival; this would often be a central and most basic objective in a strategic warning system. Identification of Additional Themes and Issues Through Exploratory Foresight With the objectives of national interests defined, the human analyst would be required to scan the environment to identify the threats based on those objectives and additionally to spot threats that were not singled out in the initial objectives definition. This exploratory scan further assesses plausible future scenarios and identifies the threats they may present. Defining Identified Warning Issues Once a set of clear warning issues have been defined the warning analyst must develop indicators for such threats in order to be successful. Indicators are key incidents, which have been identified as triggers or part of a trend leading to a potential escalation that actualises a threat. A detailed analysis of each possible situation must be produced for each plausible threat scenario. Monitoring Threat Issues and Indicators Having developed indicators for all plausible and probable threat scenarios, the analysts must then focus their attention on the continued monitoring of these indicators. The ability to monitor and track these indicators effectively would provide a warning analyst with sufficient prior knowledge of an impending threat scenario. Production of the Strategic Warning Product The strategic warning product must be concise and clearly understood by the client. For instance, the strategic warning product must indicate the probability of the threat actualising, a clear assessment of the magnitude of damage were the threat to occur and a clear indication of the timeline of this threat actualising. In the absence of clear and concise information in the strategic warning product, clients may often inject their own personal perceptions onto the magnitude and probability of threat actualisation.

Jan Oliver Schwarz, Pitfalls in implementing a strategic early warning system, Foresight - The journal of future studies, strategic thinking and policy Volume 7, Number 4, (9) (2005): 22-30.

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Dissemination of the Strategic Warning Product to Decision-makers The final step in a strategic warning system is the dissemination of the warning product to decision-makers. There are two key components for this step: 1) delivery of the strategic warning product to the correct decision-maker who is able to take the necessary mitigating action; and 2) ensuring the strategic warning product is delivered to the decision-maker with sufficient lead time for them to take action. Without both of these components in place, the strategic warning system will fail. Challenges to Strategic Warning Systems The field of strategic warning systems is marred with challenges and obstacles. The requirement of strategic warning systems is to identify and communicate an impending threat in a timely, convincing, and decision-enhancing fashion.9 It is a highly difficult and problematic task, which is complicated when first signs of the threat have not yet actualised and still loom far in the future. Because of the time factor involved, the threat cannot have materialised or even emitted strong indications - hard evidence of the enemy at the gate would be sufficient to constitute a strategic warning failure. As such, strategic warning analysts are required to depend on anticipatory judgements; and strategic warning by nature is derived from inference, deduction, intuition and at times, pure speculation. In such situations analysts will have to issue strategic warnings without the support of obvious evidence. Without a smoking gun, strategic warning analysis becomes highly vulnerable to errors.10 In the retrospective studies done on strategic warning systems, strategic warning failures are more often caused by analytical deficiencies than insufficient information.11 Analytical defects are often a result of biases in analysis. The various categories of biases are cognitive, cultural, emotionally-induced, and organisational, with cognitive biases singled out as a major ingredient of analytical failures. The Human Analyst is Indispensable In the exceedingly human-dependent strategic warning process described above, it is evident that the process is human centric. However the limitations and critical challenges of human analysis on strategic warning systems, such as cognitive biases, can greatly undermine the accuracy of strategic warning products. Technological advancements in recent years, in particular the advancement of computing technology, has given rise to suggestions that the innovative use of technology can ameliorate certain analytical deficiencies faced by strategic warning systems. In strategic warning systems, there are usually two approaches: human analysis and computer-based assessment. Computer-based assessment fundamentally involves statistical, knowledge-based, and artificial intelligence methods in pattern and trend identification.12 Often these automated or computerised analytical systems have been considered an alternative or complementary option to human analytical work. However despite current advancements in technology, no computer system or program is able to match and replicate human analytical creativity, and has yet to present sufficiently reliable output.13
9

Ibid. Davis, Improving CIA Analytic Performance. 11 Ibid. 12 Ivanova & Tagarev, Indicator space configuration. 13 Ibid.
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The identification and assessment of patterns and trends simply cannot be accomplished in isolation from contextual understanding. This very necessity places the human analyst as an indispensable component of any strategic warning system. Therefore, strategic warning systems must take into account these human analytical deficiencies and challenges, and seek to minimise their negative effects through possible technological or process-based mitigation methods. Cognitive Biases Richard J. Heuer from the Center for the Study of Intelligence defines cognitive biases as the mental errors caused by our simplified informational processing strategies14 and that it is a subconscious mental error that is consistent and predictable. Manifestations of cognitive biases include arbitrary inference, selective abstraction, overgeneralisations, magnification, and minimisation, dichotomous thinking, jumping to conclusions, discounting the positive and personalisation.15 All these traits are exceedingly detrimental to analysis. Cognitive biases can and will affect strategic warning systems in both horizontal and vertical aspects; it can clearly affect the analytical output of the individual in a horizontal process, and influence the dissemination and acceptance of the warning product in a vertical process.16 Horizontal Effects - Analysis17 Cognitive biases are a major hurdle in effective strategic warning analysis. Within strategic warning analysis, due to the deficiencies of cognitive biases, the analysis may be affected in the evaluation of evidence, characterisation of emerging threats, and also the judgement on the likelihood of impending threats. During the initial analysis phase, when analysts are processing the collected data, the manifestation of cognitive biases may result in the tendency to be oversensitive to the consistency of information furthermore incorrectly mistaking correlation as for causation. For instance, the analyst would have subconscious preferences when the evidence supports the cognitive model initially built. Hence the analyst might accept this absence of contradiction as a validation of accuracy as opposed to engaging in the individual evaluation of each item of evidence for reliability. This is often a recurring issue. Despite having an item of evidence discredited earlier, analysts might have difficulty abandoning the earlier causal hypothesis formed with the discredited but consistent information.18 In the intermediate analysis phase, analysts have a tendency to link and associate evidence into a coherent causal pattern. This cognitive preference for cause and effect often replaces or underplays the scientific method and scientific findings. In such situations, the failure to accept randomness, for example, often results in situations where causal reasoning is incorrectly applied, while other types of cognitive biases lead to misconceptions of conspiracies, nonexistent patterns and trends. Owing to the tendency of the human mind to systematically simplify cognitive processes, there is a strong inclination for characterising events under simplistic
Richards J. Heuer, Jr., Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, Center for the Study of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency, 1999. 15 Ivanova & Tagarev, Indicator space configuration. 16 Woocher, The Effects of Cognitive Biases. 17 Heuer, Psychology of Intelligence Analysis. 18 Heuer, Psychology of Intelligence Analysis.
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models such as cause-effect relationships and other centralised structured model. Essentially, the mind prefers to link and associate any set of data into an apparent pattern or coherent narrative rather than consider more complex, possibly random, and unrelated, components. This inclination to fall back on causal reasoning will often result in the conceptualisation of inaccurate trends and patterns. While most assessments have focused on the deficiencies of human analytical capabilities, recent studies have identified and highlighted strengths in human analysis. The Triarchic Theory of Intelligence, for example provides an alternate assessment of human analytical capabilities to the traditional cognitive theories.19 According to the Triarchic Theory, there are three fundamental aspects of intelligence: analytic intelligence, creative intelligence, and practical intelligence.20 Of the three fundamental aspects of intelligence outlined by the Triarchic Theory, creative intelligence and practical intelligence are particularly important in the context of strategic warning analysis. In the difficult step of strategic foresight, strategic warning systems are required to envision future scenarios. These future scenarios might be traditional types of events that have occurred in the past such as wars, pandemics, and ecological disasters. However the future also presents novel events that might significantly differ from any previous events in history, thus necessitating the difficult task of horizon scanning. In such situations, pure analytical capabilities alone would be grossly insufficient to identify completely new events and then derive corresponding scenarios. Therefore, creative intelligence or analytical creativity is critical in any effective early warning system. Vertical Effects - Dissemination Furthermore, the negative impact of cognitive biases goes beyond the analysis component of strategic warning systems and can substantially influence the effectiveness of the decision-maker in evaluating the warning and the eventual decision regarding the response. A key attribute, among others, that may differentiate strategic warning from tactical warning is sufficiently advanced periods of warning provided to an impending event.21 However, the fact remains that the decision-maker is usually preoccupied by current intelligence products as opposed to long range intelligence such as strategic warning22 the issue is not disinterest but simply not having time to deal with issues beyond the current horizon. Therefore warning analysts face a major challenge in the dissemination of strategic warning, particularly when faced with a difficult choice in how cautious an approach to adopt. When analysts are over-cautious in their assessment of the threat, they face the risk of failure, and if they are over-aggressive in issuing warnings, they risk the criticism of crying wolf. In the already highly difficult field of strategic warning analysis, analysts are further burdened with the complexity of effective dissemination and conveyance of the strategic warning to decision-makers. This becomes a significantly daunting task when there is a persistent vulnerability of error in analysis. This is especially
19

Robert J. Sternberg, A Broad view of intelligence the theory of successful intelligence, Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, 55(3) (2003): 139154. 20 Ibid. 21 Cynthia M. Grabo, Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning, edited by Jan Goldman, (Lanham MD: University Press of America, May 2004). 22 Mark M. Lowenthal, Intelligence: From Secrets to Policy, 2 ed. Washington DC: CQ Press, 2003.

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amplified when an inconvenient warning is issued to decision-makers that would entail either unpopular or costly countermeasures. A senior U.S. intelligence official once noted that, policy-makers see themselves and their staffs as on a par with or being as substantively knowledgeable on issues of interest as the intelligence community.23 This unduly rigid mindset of decision-makers in addition to the cognitive distortion presents a highly problematic environment for analysts to convey strategic warnings convincingly. The inherent difficulty here is to produce a warning product that is complex enough to adequately explain the varying degrees of likelihood and impact, while simple enough for decision-makers to understand and be convinced. Fine Tuning the Analytical Process Shortage of information is usually not the issue; if anything, the overload of information is often a cause of concern. Much of the collected information is often left unprocessed. In this respect, technology can play a complementary role in assisting human analytical processes. Accepting the indispensable role of human analysis in strategic warning systems, investment into automating areas such as data-mining, text-mining and visual projection can greatly complement the analytical process and at the same time free up the analysts from the chore of sifting and sorting these large masses of information,24 allowing them more importantly to concentrate on the analysis and to view issues from a big picture perspective, improving their capacity to identify patterns and trends.25 The Center for Intelligence Studies presented six fundamental steps to improving analysis, these include: an enhanced process of analysis, improving the analyst recruitment, training and education process, improving communication between users and analysts, enforcing a validation process within analysis and encouraging persistent review of past judgements, establishing a system that retains experiences and lessons learned, and finally implementing a process of continual collaboration and sharing.26 In this framework, technology can also provide a real-time interactive communication platform among analysts and strategic warning customers. Very few intelligence products provided to decision-makers are ever written solely by one analyst;27 intelligence products benefit significantly from peer review and critique. Interactive platforms that encourage the continuous review and challenge of previous assessments and analysis can greatly improve the quality of warning products. Process-driven methods can be put in place to mitigate cognitive deficiencies in analysis, such as automated aids integrated into the process architecture that remind analysts to adopt a falsification approach or the scientific approach to evidence and analytical evaluation. Other aids may constantly remind and question the analyst on cognitive biases. These may include certain analytical guidelines or checklists.
Heuer, Psychology of Intelligence Analysis. Khee Yin How, Singapore Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Initiative (RAHS), Paper presented at the International Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Symposium 2007, Singapore, accessed June, 30, 2010. http://www.rahs.org.sg/IRAHSS_07/speakersPresentations/How%20Khee%20Yin.pdf. 25 Lowenthal, Intelligence. 26 Jeffrey R. Cooper, Curing analytical pathologies: pathways to improved intelligence analysis, Center for the Study of Intelligence, 2005, retrieved from Woocher, The Effects of Cognitive Biases. 27 Lowenthal, Intelligence.
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On an institutional level, cognitive distortions of traditional analysis can be mitigated through the parallel application of alternate forms of analysis. For instance, while maintaining traditional analysis, organisations can commission red team analysis and alternative analysis. And finally, in the highly interconnected complexity of todays world, strategic warning systems must employ analytical contributions from a wide variety of disciplines. Previously, strategic warning systems generally only involved analysts from psychology, anthropology, biology, economics, and political science backgrounds.28 However, further diversification to include other disciplines as varied as agriculture, engineering, and medical science must be considered. The Singapore Joint Counter Terrorism Centre (JCTC), for example, has institutionalised diversity within its analytical architecture to incorporate an element of alternative analysis. For every domain monitored by the JCTC, there are four particular analytical profiles sought - Domain Expert, Terrorism Expert, Intelligence/ Security Expert, and Fresh Eyes. The Fresh Eyes or non-experts can provide an alternative view that adds diversity in interpretation and analysis of scenarios.29 Strategic warning systems present unrelenting and painful challenges that require perpetual improvements and fine-tuning. For the foreseeable future, human analytics will continue to be the primary engine that drives strategic warning systems. While the imperfection of the human cognitive design will continue to challenge the ideal output of strategic warning systems, the unique human capabilities of creative intelligence and practical intelligence are critical components of strategic warning systems. While the realization of cognitive biases alone is insufficient to address this analytical deficiency, there are various ways that can minimise the occurrence of cognitive biases in analysis. These solutions can be applied individually to analysts or institutionally to minimise cognitive distortions. Therefore, robust systems must be put in place that consistently remind human analysts of their cognitive limitations, incorporating technological aids such as tagging and visualisation aids that mitigate the analytical stress of working on large dataset issues, and institutional insistence on the development of a rigorous analysis corps including the promotion of diversity within those units.

28 29

Ivanova & Tagarev, Indicator space configuration. Khee Yin How, Singapore Risk Assessment.

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Bibliography Chan, Steve. The Intelligence of Stupidity: Understanding Failures in Strategic Warning. The American Political Science Review, Vol. 73, No. 1 (Mar., 1979): 171-180. Cooper, Jeffrey R. Curing analytical pathologies: pathways to improved intelligence analysis. Center for the Study of Intelligence, 2005. Retrieved from Woocher, Lawrence. The Effects of Cognitive Biases on Early Warning. Paper Presented at the International Studies Association Annual Convention, 29 March 2008. Davis, Jack. Improving CIA Analytic Performance: Strategic Warning. Sherman Kent Center for Intelligence Analysis, Occasional Papers, Vol.1, Number 1 (Sept 2002). Grabo, Cynthia M. Anticipating Surprise: Analysis for Strategic Warning. edited by Jan Goldman. Lanham MD: University Press of America, May 2004. Heuer, Richards J. Jr. Psychology of Intelligence Analysis. Center for the Study of Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency, 1999. How, Khee Yin. Singapore Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Initiative (RAHS). Paper presented at the International Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Symposium 2007, Singapore. Accessed June, 30, 2010. http://www.rahs.org.sg/IRAHSS_07/speakersPresentations/How%20Khee%2 0Yin.pdf Ivanova, Petya I., & Tagarev, Todor D. Indicator space configuration for early warning of violent political conflicts by genetic algorithms. Annals of Operations Research, 97(1-4) (2000). Knight, Kenneth. Focused on foresight: An interview with the U.S.s national intelligence officer for warning. McKinsey Quarterly (Sept 2009). Accessed on June 30, 2010. http://www.mckinseyquarterly.com/Public_Sector/Management/Focused_on_f oresight_An_interview_with_the_U.S._national_intelligence_officer_for_warni ng_2415. Lavoix, Helene. Early Warning and 21st Century Challenges. Paper presented at the 5th meeting of the Club of Budapest, European Commission, Bucharest, February 2009. Low, Aaron. (Ed.). Decisions in a complex world: building foresight capabilities. Singapore: Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Centre, National Security Coordination Secretariat, 2010. Lowenthal, Mark M. Intelligence: From Secrets to Policy. 2 ed. Washington DC: CQ Press, 2003. Schwarz, Jan Oliver. Pitfalls in implementing a strategic early warning system. Foresight - The journal of future studies, strategic thinking and policy Volume 7, Number 4, (9) (2005): 22-30. Sternberg, Robert J., A Broad view of intelligence the theory of successful intelligence. Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research 55(3) (2003): 139154.

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Woocher, Lawrence. The Effects of Cognitive Biases on Early Warning. Paper Presented at the International Studies Association Annual Convention, 29 March 2008. Yurica, Carrie L. & Robert A. Di Tomasso. Cognitive Distortions. Encyclopedia of Cognitive Behavior Therapy (2005), Part 3: 117-122, DOI: 10.1007/0-30648581-8_36.

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ABSTRACTS
Risks and Opportunities: The Role of Strategic Foresight and Warning Jan Eichstedt The populations in developed western countries seem to be obsessed with the mitigation of man-made, socially constructed risks. As a result, politicians overemphasize the notion of risk and security, while neglecting opportunities to advance the prosperity and interests of their countries. In order to prove the validity of this claim, a sample of U.S. presidents State of the Union Addresses was quantitatively and qualitatively examined. The findings will be explained by focusing on three factors: 1) the phenomenon of securitization 2) the science policy nexus and 3) the society at large. Furthermore, this essay will argue that there is a need for Strategic Foresight and Warning that scans the horizon for weak signals, anticipates their relevance in the societal context and make recommendations on which of the many future trends decision-makers should focus on. In addition Strategic Foresight and Warning should assist in estimating policy outcomes with a special focus on promoting opportunities. Cognitive Biases: What We Think Affects the World - The Case of Climate Change and Terrorism Marc Villot When dealing with risks and threats, our ability to assess them rationally is compounded by our cognitive processes. The inability of the human mind to properly judge plausibility and uncertainty means that our brain uses mental shortcuts to estimate likelihood of threats. This essay seeks to illustrate the profound impact our cognitive biases have on our assessment of what threatens our livelihoods. By looking at the cases of terrorism and climate change, this paper demonstrates the process by which we prioritise threats is prone to subjectivity in which our biases and assumptions under and overestimate the plausibility of risks. This leads us to focus on specific issues while ignoring others that may represent much more potent and likely threats. The consequence of these cognitive biases is strategic surprise that can catch policy-makers and the public off guard, despite the availability of information highlighting the existence of risks. This essay argues that the reasons behind our prioritisation of terrorism over climate change is not due to plausibility but based on our cognitive biases and the ways in which we assimilate information on both issues. The Future of Food Security: Complexity and a Systemic Approach Ya-Yi Ong For the longest time, energy, climate, nuclear power, terrorism have dominated top policy-makers global agenda. It is almost an irony that it has to take a price crisis for the most basic component of human survival food to recapture the worlds attention. It is against this backdrop that the paper seeks to better understand the complexity of global food security using the systems approach.

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Strategic Foresight and Warning, the United States (U.S.) Department of Defense and Counterinsurgency in Iraq Justin M. Goldman Strategic foresight has been a valuable tool within the U.S. Department of Defense. Commanders and planners have gained significant insights through its use, particularly when evaluating potential courses of action for operational purposes. Iraq has been one of the most scrutinized foreign policy decisions taken by the U.S. Government in the last decade. Strategic foresight exercises have been an important part of this process. This paper starts by looking at the now de-classified war-game, Desert Crossing, which took place in June 1999. In the aftermath of the March 2003 invasion of Iraq, the coalition found itself unprepared for the post-conflict challenges, although many were probable considering the Desert Crossing seminars findings. General David Petraeus led the effort to develop the capability within the U.S. military to effectively wage counterinsurgency and guided the process of updating the doctrine for this type of warfare. Finally the paper will look at the American Enterprise Institutes seminar that aimed to test the concept behind the 2007 shift to a population-centric approach in Iraq. Framing the Future for ASEAN Loh Woon Liang The main argument for this paper is that ASEANs present push for integration will continue and that ASEAN is likely to become the meaningful community it envisages in 2015. The approach to the future of ASEAN in this paper adopted Sohails three frames of reference, predictive, interpretive, and critical. In the predictive, empirical data and theory were identified. ASEAN historical and cultural factors were used to shape the interpretive frame. Finally, high impact but low probability events were considered in the critical frame. Biases were duly acknowledged in part of the conclusion. Typhoon Ketsana and the effects of cognitive biases in a governments strategic foresight and early warning capability Gayedelle V. Florendo This paper examines issues and concepts related to cognitive biases or limitations in the way individuals (or a group of individuals) process information and make decisions.1 In particular, the article seeks to explain the role of cognitive biases in a state and its leaders ability to effectively identify and anticipate threat/s, and, consequently, raise timely warning and effect appropriate responses. To illustrate this point, the paper uses as a case study typhoon Ketsana which hit the Philippine capital, Metro Manila, in September last year. The typhoon caused record flooding and massive paralysis of the countrys capital and provinces in Luzon. Specifically, the paper argues how cognitive biases fundamentally account for the Philippine governments abject failure in anticipating this readily recognizable, high impact threat. From a broader perspective, the article looks at the role of cognitive biases in how the Philippine government determines priority concerns. In particular, the paper
1

Woocher, The Effects of Cognitive Biases.

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asks why catastrophes that seriously place the countrys capital in grave danger had not been taken into account. This article argues that in an increasingly complex world--where the risk of another catastrophe remains--if a state and its leaders intend to correctly determine priorities and evaluate the nature and extent of threats, it is necessary to start with identifying and managing well-entrenched views or biases. The paper then discusses a few ways to achieve this end. Navigating Uncertainty: Understanding and Appreciating the Role of the Human Analyst B.C. Tan In the ever-increasing interdependent global system of today, volatile situations are no longer contained by geography or isolated by subject. This new age of global interaction adds increased levels of complexity in the already persistently uncertain future. This rapidly increasing complexity in global affairs has added substantial stress and anxiety to the traditional decision-making model. Decision-makers today find themselves increasingly dependent on strategic warning systems to leverage the uncertainty of the future. While strategic warning systems are exceedingly complex processes that seek to reduce the uncertainties presented by the future, like other intelligence methods, strategic warning systems are still fundamentally dependent on human analytical input. However, human analysis does present certain limitations such as cognitive deficiencies and other forms of biases that have profound impact on the effectiveness and accuracy of strategic warning systems. This particular concern has pressed governments involved with strategic warning systems to consider the possibility of using technology to address these human analytical limitations. However in the complex process of strategic warning systems can technology truly be the solution? The human analyst while subjected to certain cognitive limitations still provide the critical elements of creativity and capacity to analyse complex issues with the added necessary context that no technology can replicate in our current level of technology. Computer based approaches in strategic warning systems depend on statistical, knowledge based and artificial intelligence methods; which to date have failed to result in sufficiently reliable outputs2. While technology can provide solutions to minimise cognitive deficiencies, technology simply cannot replace the role of the human analyst in strategic warning and foresight. Therefore, governments and organisations involved in strategic warning systems should focus efforts on designing and improving processes that can effectively mitigate cognitive deficiencies. These mitigation techniques may include processes and systems that perpetually remind and enforce a critical approach on evidence and analysis review. Additionally, on an organisational level, other mitigation techniques may include the injection of diversity in analysis through the introduction of red team analysis, alternative analysis and the recruitment of analysts from diverse disciplines.
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Ivanova & Tagarev, Indicator space configuration.

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In conclusion, strategic warning systems will remain highly problematic and susceptible to human analytical deficiencies. However the human analytical component simply cannot be replaced, thus leaving as only option willingness and efforts to address and overcome these challenges.

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CONTRIBUTORS
Dr. Helene Lavoix works as an independent researcher and consultant specialised in Strategic Foresight and Warning (SF&W), conflict and crises prevention, genocide and Eastern Asia for various international institutional actors. She teaches SF&W, for example as Visiting Senior Fellow at the Centre of Excellence for National Security of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) (NTU - Singapore). She has published on SF&W, indicators, fragile states, complexity, and genocide. Her current research interests are focused on actionable SF&W for traditional and nontraditional security issues, including international multidisciplinary collaborative processes, multidisciplinary dynamic models and networks, belief systems and biases, as well as the future of the modern state. Prior to that, she served as an analyst in International Relations (Eastern Asia and Globalisation) for the European Commission, created and headed the Cambodian branch of a NGO in the field of Development during and after the UN peace-building mission and worked in finance. She holds a PhD in Political Science and a MSc in International Politics of Asia (distinction) from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, and a Master in Finance (Grande Ecole, France - valedictorian). Jan Eichstedt grew up in East Berlin and joined the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1997. During his career, he served as an officer in various units of the Armys Reconnaissance Corps. As a course director at the International Special Training Center, Mr. Eichstedt was responsible for drafting and implementing training courses for soldiers of the Division Specialized Operations on topics, ranging from cross-cultural competence to counter insurgency. He left the military as a Captain in 2009. He received a Master of Economics from Helmut-Schmidt University in Hamburg in 2004 and a Master of Science in Strategic Studies from the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore in 2010. Adding to his experience in the Middle East, while in Singapore, Mr. Eichstedt dealt with regional foreign and security policy issues with a focus on Chinas strategic outlook. He also studied the politics of risk and Strategic Foresight and Warning. Mr. Eichstedt is currently residing in Berlin, Germany. Marc Villot was raised in France and moved to the UK in 2005 to pursue a degree in International Relations from the University of Birmingham. He then moved to Singapore and was awarded a scholarship at the Rajaratnam School of International Studies where he undertook a Master of Science in Strategic Studies. His work focuses on ethnic insurgency, radicalisation, and cognitive biases in risk assessment. He was a research assistant at the Centre for Excellence and National Security for Professor Kumar Ramakrishna. Mr Villot is currently living in Singapore. Ya-Yi Ong worked as an Information Technology Project Manager prior to pursuing a Master of Science at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies. With business process and systems implementation as her forte, she nevertheless decided to pursue an MSc in International Political Economy in the hopes of contributing in the arena of international development work in the future.

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Justin M. Goldman earned an MSc in Strategic Studies from the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University where he is an Associate Research Fellow in Military Studies. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps as an infantryman deploying to Afghanistan and Pakistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom during 2001-2002. Following his honourable discharge he earned a BA in International Policy from Regis University in Denver, Colorado. He has served as a civilian analyst within the U.S. Department of Defense including the Joint Heavyweight Torpedo Program in partnership with the Royal Australian Navy. In the spring of 2008 he deployed to Liberia and Senegal onboard USS Fort McHenry as part of Africa Partnership Station, a maritime security cooperation engagement. Loh Woon Liang is an officer from the Republic of Singapore Air force. He was awarded the SAF Postgraduate Award to pursue the MSc in Strategic Studies at RSIS. Woon Liang holds a BEng in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the Nanyang Technological University. Woon Liang joined the Air force in 1998 and has held both staff and operational appointments. He is currently back with the Air force after his MSc and is deployed in an operational role. Gayedelle V. Florendo graduated with a Master's degree in Strategic Studies and a Certificate in Terrorism Studies from the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) in 2010. Prior to this, Ms. Florendo worked as a research analyst at a counter terrorism unit in South-western Philippines. B.C. Tan is the global head of organized crime research for World-Check. He graduated from the Ohio State University with a B.A. in Political Science, and International Security and Intelligence. He is currently a M.Sc. candidate in Strategic Studies at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University. His key research areas include transnational organized crime, narcotics trafficking, crime-terror nexus, anti-money laundering, and the counter-financing of terrorism. He contributes regularly to several Anti-Money Laundering and security focused publications that have included the Anti Money Laundering Magazine and Janes Intelligence Review.

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ABOUT THE S. RAJARATNAM SCHOOL OF INTERNATIONAL STUDIES (RSIS)


The S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) was officially inaugurated on 1 January 2007. Before that, it was known as the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies (IDSS), which was established ten years earlier on 30 July 1996. Like its predecessor, RSIS was established as an autonomous entity within the Nanyang Technological University (NTU). The School exists to develop a community of scholars and policy analysts at the forefront of Asia-Pacific security studies and international affairs. Its three core functions are research, graduate teaching and networking activities in the AsiaPacific region. It produces cutting-edge security related research in Asia-Pacific Security, Conflict and Non-Traditional Security, International Political Economy, and Country and Area Studies. The Schools activities are aimed at assisting policymakers to develop comprehensive approaches to strategic thinking on issues related to security and stability in the Asia-Pacific and their implications for Singapore. For more information about RSIS, please visit http://www.rsis.edu.sg/.

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ABOUT THE CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE FOR NATIONAL SERCURITY (CENS)


The Centre of Excellence for National Security (CENS) is a research unit of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Established on 1 April 2006, CENS is devoted to rigorous policy-relevant analysis of a range of national security issues. The CENS team is multinational in composition, comprising both Singaporean and foreign analysts who are specialists in various aspects of national and homeland security affairs. Why CENS? In August 2004 the Strategic Framework for National Security outlined the key structures, security measures and capability development programmes that would help Singapore deal with transnational terrorism in the near and long term. However, strategising national security policies requires greater research and understanding of the evolving security landscape. This is why CENS was established to increase the intellectual capital invested in strategising national security. To this end, CENS works closely with not just other RSIS research programmes, but also national security agencies such as the National Security Coordination Secretariat within the Prime Ministers Office. What Research Does CENS Do? CENS aspires to be an international research leader in the multi-disciplinary study of the concept of Resilience in all its aspects, and in the policy-relevant application of such research in order to promote Security within and beyond Singapore. To this end, CENS conducts research in four main domains: Radicalisation Studies The multi-disciplinary study of the indicators and causes of violent radicalisation, the promotion of community immunity to extremist ideas and best practices in individual rehabilitation. The assumption being that neutralising violent radicalism presupposes individual and community resilience. Social Resilience The systematic study of the sources of and ways of promoting the capacity of globalised, multicultural societies to hold together in the face of systemic shocks such as diseases and terrorist strikes. Homeland Defence A broad domain encompassing risk perception, management and communication; and the study of best practices in societal engagement, dialogue and strategic communication in crises. The underlying theme is psychological resilience, as both a response and antidote to, societal stresses and perceptions of vulnerability.

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Futures Studies The study of various theoretical and conceptual approaches to the systematic and rigorous study of emerging threats, as well as global trends and opportunities on the assumption that Resilience also encompasses robust visions of the future. How Does CENS Help Influence National Security Policy? Through policy-oriented analytical commentaries and other research output directed at the national security policy community in Singapore and beyond, CENS staff members promote greater awareness of emerging threats as well as global best practices in responding to those threats. In addition, CENS organises courses, seminars and workshops for local and foreign national security officials to facilitate networking and exposure to leading-edge thinking on the prevention of, and response to, national and homeland security threats. How Does CENS Help Raise Public Awareness of National Security Issues? To educate the wider public, CENS staff members regularly author articles in a number of security and intelligence-related publications, as well as write op-ed analyses in leading newspapers. Radio and television interviews have allowed CENS staff to participate in and shape the public debate on critical issues such as radicalisation and counter-terrorism, multiculturalism and social resilience, as well as the perception, management and mitigation of risk. How Does CENS Keep Abreast of Cutting Edge National Security Research? The lean organisational structure of CENS permits a constant and regular influx of Visiting Fellows of international calibre through the Distinguished CENS Visitors Programme. This enables CENS to keep abreast of cutting edge global trends in national security research. For more information on CENS, log on to http://www.rsis.edu.sg/CENS and follow the links to Centre of Excellence for National Security.

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This collection of essays is intended to showcase the potentially wide applicability of Strategic Foresight and Warning approaches and concepts. These provide a suite of useful analytical tools for busy analysts within and outside government. Such tools may well be timely as policy analysts everywhere face the demanding task of having to make sense of an often bewildering variety of often-linked transnational security threats, challenges and opportunities that comprise the complex milieu within which Singapore and other countries nd themselves inextricably a part of. Finally, it is hoped that this monograph will help achieve the wider goal of encouraging greater policy interest in the increasingly important domain of Strategic Foresight and Warning. Associate Professor Kumar Ramakrishna Head, Centre of Excellence for National Security