Irregular Conflict and the Wicked Problem Dilemma: Strategies of Imperfection by Franklin D. Kramer, NDU's Prism. Here's the abstract:
Irregular conflict poses a wicked problem—with contradictory and changing requirements, multiple stakeholders, many interdependencies, and problems that keep evolving. Successful resolution demands strategies that can produce satisfactory results despite imperfections in motivations, capabilities, and techniques. Based on an analysis of successful irregular conflict resolutions, this article proposes a framework and broad set of techniques. In undertaking to generate "good enough" resolutions, a combination of competitive, collaborative, and authoritative approaches will allow for greater flexibility and effectiveness. The problem of changing behaviors is the critical element. Doing so will require understanding multiple critical actors and their often conflicting objectives, and applying, within the context of a multiphased adaptive approach, the techniques of persistent security, thoughtful interactions with key groups including the importance of a favorable base from which to build, establishment of appropriate and sometimes multiple and even competing structures, the control of spoilers, the management of hatred, close scrutiny of economic actions including the importance of absorptive capacity and the synergistic consequences of projects and the potential for corruption, the limitation of sanctuaries, and the use of negotiations.
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