Strategy Connections is building a bridge between the study of international relations and related subjects, and the needs of practitioners. It does this through (1) providing executive summaries on key works in the field and (2) providing a discussion forum for subscribers to engage in discussions on these works as well as other topics they can nominate. It uses the latest in mobile-friendly discussion software that allows members to create profiles, receive email updates on topics they track, and nominate their own discussion topics.
There’s been a long-running discussion about how to deal with a “gap” between the interests of academics working in these disciplines and the needs of policymakers. There is also a gap between military and civilian perspectives on these subjects. Military officers may be familiar with the writings of Clausewitz and Sun Tzu, and are well-versed in relevant history, but are generally unfamiliar with the insights and analysis of Kenneth Waltz or G. John Ikenberry – whose work has more likely shaped the thinking of civilians in the Department of Defense and the State Department than either Clausewitz or Sun Tzu.
In both of these gaps (academic/practitioner, military/civilian), incentives on each side simply encourage different areas of focus for reading and study. At some level, these differences can strengthen decision processes if harnessed correctly – but so can a common familiarity with key works on diplomacy, intelligence, economics, military affairs, and international relations.
Our mission is to become the primary bridge between academic analysis of national security issues and the practical needs of practitioners, strategists, and policymakers.
You can read a more thorough background story on this idea on our blog.
Tom Nagle, PhD
Strategy Connections, LLC