Show simple item record

Files in this item


Item metadata

dc.contributor.authorHarkness, Kristen A.
dc.contributor.authorHunzeker, Michael
dc.identifier.citationHarkness , K A & Hunzeker , M 2015 , ' Military maladaptation : counterinsurgency and the politics of failure ' , Journal of Strategic Studies , vol. 38 , no. 6 , pp. 777-800 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 163422567
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: ffe8d2c3-c2ab-4e18-b42e-18a9c13cc83c
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 84942197389
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0001-5882-3745/work/60427623
dc.identifier.otherWOS: 000361485800002
dc.description.abstractTactical learning is critical to battlefield success, especially in a counterinsurgency. This article tests the existing model of military adaption against a ‘most-likely’ case: the British Army’s counterinsurgency in the Southern Cameroons (1960–61). Despite meeting all preconditions thought to enable adaptation – decentralization, leadership turnover, supportive leadership, poor organizational memory, feedback loops, and a clear threat – the British still failed to adapt. Archival evidence suggests politicians subverted bottom-up adaptation, because winning came at too high a price in terms of Britain’s broader strategic imperatives. Our finding identifies an important gap in the extant adaptation literature: it ignores politics.
dc.relation.ispartofJournal of Strategic Studiesen
dc.rights© 2014 Taylor & Francis. This work is made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created, accepted version manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at
dc.subjectMilitary adaptationen
dc.subjectWartime learningen
dc.subjectOrganizational changeen
dc.subjectBritish Armyen
dc.subjectPost-colonial Africaen
dc.subjectJZ International relationsen
dc.titleMilitary maladaptation : counterinsurgency and the politics of failureen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. School of International Relationsen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record