Designing a NATO that Thinks Differently for 21st Century Complex Challenges


  • Dr. Porkoláb Imre ezredes
  • Ben Zweibelson


Design Thinking, Change, Adaptation, Transformation, Military Design, Planning, Education, NATO, Complexity


The 21st century presents novel and increasingly complex security challenges for the international defense community and NATO in particular. Western armed forces as well as intergovernmental military alliances, such as NATO, appear increasingly unable to deal with these problems using traditional planning and organizing methodologies alone; what used to work effectively no longer seems to possess the same precision and control. Traditional military decision-making and problem-solving methodologies are insufficient tools for what is increasingly seen as a postmodern era of conflict and security challenges. The authors promote the relatively new and organizationally disruptive theory and practice known as ‘military design’ as an important area for NATO educational development and implementation into practice as well as doctrine. Many nations within the NATO alliance have already implemented their own unique military design methodologies, and eventually as a force for complex security challenges NATO will need to consider design within a NATO formation. The authors establish the distinctions between military design and military planning, how NATO can implement design in practice and education, and why NATO requires design and traditional planning together in the context of emergent 21st century challenges. The window for rapid innovation and organizational transformation using military design is now, with the call for a design framework that is flexible towards unique NATO requirements and possessing essential qualities indicative of appreciating and addressing many emergent and novel challenges confronting the alliance.

Szerző életrajzok

Dr. Porkoláb Imre ezredes

As Brigadier General Imre Porkoláb, PhD, is currently serving as NATO Supreme Allied Commander Transformation’s representative to the Pentagon. His duties include aligning US and NATO ACT efforts with the Joint Staff, DoD, in the Pentagon, as well as liaising with the Think Tank community in Washington DC. As a Special Forces officer by trade, he has done operational tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and has served in the Hungarian Defence Forces at different command and leadership positions. He holds three masters degrees (International Relations, Military Leadership and Defence Analysis) and a PhD. His research includes organizational transformation and change leadership.

Ben Zweibelson

Ben Zweibelson is the Program Director for Special Operations Forces (SOF) Design Educa-tion at the Joint Special Operations University (JSOU) in the U.S. Special Operations Com-mand (USSOCOM) located in Tampa, Florida. He is also a 3rd year doctoral student with the Australian National University where he is focused on the postmodern military design movement across the Anglosphere. Ben is a retired U.S. Army Infantry Officer with over 22 years combined service and multiple combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ben holds an undergraduate degree in Graphic Design with the University of Connecticut, a Masters in Liberal Arts with the Louisiana State University, a Masters in Military Arts and Sciences from the Air Command and Staff College, and a Masters in Military Operational Arts and Sciences (focusing on military design) from the U.S. Army School of Advanced Military Studies. He is widely published and has lectured or facilitated design across international military, SOF, and conventional forces from the Academy level to War Colleges. Ben resides in Tampa, Florida with his wife Jill and their three children.






Hogyan kell idézni

Porkoláb, I., & Zweibelson, B. (2021). Designing a NATO that Thinks Differently for 21st Century Complex Challenges. Honvédségi Szemle – Hungarian Defence Review, 146(1), 196–212. Elérés forrás

Folyóirat szám


Alkalmazott társadalomtudományok