This volume explores and develops new social-scientific tools for the analysis and understanding of contemporary military missions in theatre.
Despite the advent of new types of armed conflict, the social-scientific study of militaries in action continues to focus on tools developed in the hey-day of conventional wars. These tools focus on such classic issues as cohesion and leadership, communication and unit dynamics, or discipline and motivation. While these issues continue to be important, most studies focus on organic units (up to and including brigades). By contrast, this volume suggests the utility of concepts related to mission formations - as opposed to 'units' or 'components' - to better capture the (ongoing) processual nature of the amalgamations and combinations that military involvement in conflicts necessitates. The study of these formations by the social sciences - sociology, social psychology, anthropology, political science and organization science - requires the introduction of new analytical tools to the study of militaries in theatre. As such, this volume utilizes new approaches to social life, organizational dynamics and to armed violence to understand the place of the armed forces in contemporary conflicts and the new tasks they are assigned.
This book will be of much interest to students of military studies, sociology, security studies and International Relations in general.