STAVANGER, Norway – NATO Joint Warfare Centre’s (JWC) staff attended a professional development seminar on Design Thinking delivered by Colonel Jean-Michel Millet, Head of Transformation Delivery Division, on June 10, 2021.
Within the scope of the JWC’s warfare development mission, Design Thinking represents a process to better understand some of the recurring operational-level Command and Control (C2) challenges experienced by the training audiences during the exercise planning, as well as a new way to analyzing them, and creating innovative solutions.
Throughout the seminar, Colonel Millet expounded on the importance of Design Thinking methodology to ensure a focused warfare development mindset in order to effectively and efficiently address future operational requirements of the NATO Alliance.
“As the world security environment is changing fast, it has become critical to ensure NATO’s operational relevance and readiness. The Joint Warfare Centre upholds its responsibility to ensure that warfare development is an integral part of its activities.” Colonel Millet said.
In early 2020, the JWC initiated three main lines of effort to operationalize its warfare development efforts, demystifying the Centre’s ability to deliver collective training and warfare development for the Alliance.
I. Out-fight focuses on the multi-domain lessons identified, and ensuring the broadest distribution of best practices across NATO;
II. Out-think has given rise to the concept of Design Thinking that adjusts to the complexity of the operational environment to improve speed, relevance, and consistency in decision making;
III. Out-last focuses on increasing knowledge of NATO Forces on the different dimensions of resilience, including resilience in the cyber and space domains.
Through Design Thinking, the JWC also contributes to the NATO Warfighting Capstone Concept (NWCC) – a military concept led by Headquarters Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (HQ SACT) based on a 20-year horizon warfighting perspective, shaping NATO’s warfare development trajectory.
Colonel Millet described the JWC’s past and ongoing efforts involving Design Thinking, which included, amongst others, the Joint Operations Planning Group (JOPG) Leaders Course and partnerships with French Ecole de Guerre and the Royal Danish Defence College.
During the seminar, Colonel Millet also talked about his personal experiences, where Design Thinking ensured the success of military operations.
The seminar included a constructive question-and-answer portion.
In closing, Colonel Millet noted: “Thanks to the warfare development initiatives, the JWC has a central role in bridging the gap between conceptual advances and NATO readiness. Design Thinking is an emerging concept and there are many interpretations of it. Yet, it represents an important step in increasing operational readiness. It is invaluable to the Alliance, and it is relevant for all stages of exercise planning and exercise execution.”