Vanguard Magazine

Jun/Jul 2015

Preserving capacity, General Tom Lawson, Chief of the Defence Staff, Keys to Canadian SAR

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PUBLISHER AND EXECUTIVE EDITOR John Jones EDITOR Chris Thatcher CONtrIButOrs Michel Lalumiere Ian Coutts Ted Flint Benoit Maraval Henning Jacobsen Jason McNaught Roy Thomas Nicole Verkindt Greg Fyffe Peter Cairns eDItOrIaL aDvIsOrY BOarD LGen (Ret'd) George Macdonald VAdm (Ret'd) Greg Maddison LGen (Ret'd) Michel Maisonneuve Ambassador Graham Green saLes VICE PRESIDENT PUBLIC SECTOR SALES Terri Pavelic (905) 727-4091 ext. 225 VP BUSINESS MEDIA STRATEGY Marcello Sukhdeo (905) 727-4091 ext. 224 MARKETING DIRECTOR Mary Malofy art & PrODuCtION ART DIRECTOR Elena Pankova suBsCrIPtIONs aND aDDress CHaNGes CIRCULATION SERVICES Mary Labao Publisher's Mail Agreement: 40052410 Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to circulation dept. 23-4 Vata Court, Aurora, ON L4G 4B6 Vanguard magazine is published 6 times per year by Promotive Communications Inc. All opinions expressed herein are those of the contributors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or any person or organization associated with the magazine. Letters, submissions, comments and suggested topics are welcome, and should be sent to REPRINT INFORMATION: Reproduction or photocopying is prohibited without the publisher's prior written consent. High quality reprints of articles and additional copies of the magazine are available through PRIVACY POLICY: We do not sell our mailing list or share any confidential information on our subscribers. VANGUARD OFFICE 23-4 Vata Court, Aurora, ON L4G 4B6 Phone: (905) 727-4091 Fax: (905) 727-4428 WHILe tHe rOLes aND MIssIONs of the Canadian Armed Forces endure, the context is constantly shifting, Lieutenant-General Guy Thibault observed in an address to the annual CANSEC tradeshow in late May. Thus, preparing the military of tomorrow requires a flexible structure able to readily adopt and adapt to new and emerging technologies. It's a recurring theme for the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff. Two weeks ear- lier, he opened the Kingston Conference on International Security with a similar assessment, setting the conference theme of robotics in military operations in the context of wider CAF challenges to integrate new technology. He noted the findings of a recent Deloitte study that suggested an alarming number of Canadian companies are unprepared for technological change. Of 700 businesses surveyed, just 13 percent scored well on a range of measures from awareness, to organizational culture, organizational agility, and effective resourc- es. Eighty-seven percent were somewhat or completely unprepared for the degree and pace of change the consulting firm foresees. Deloitte pointed to an aversion to risk that translates into an unwillingness to invest resources in understanding and planning for game-changing technology. And it predicts disruptive change from the likes of robotics, artificial intelligence, and 3D printing. Deloitte noted that highly prepared firms "remain committed to research and development investment; ...are more likely than their peers to focus on national or international markets, which brings them into contact with new ideas and approaches; and [are] almost 25 percent more likely than unprepared firms to report revenue growth over the past five years." Though Western militaries are clearly cognizant of the disruptive change that is coming, history shows that many have not always adapted quickly – cavalry's belief in the trusted horse for manoeuvre in the face of tanks is but one example. And there remains cause for concern today: author Peter Singer, of the New America Foundation, in a later address to the same conference, noted that of top 10 U.S. military programs, "none begins with a U" – as in 'unmanned.' Vivek Wadhwa, a fellow at Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University, observed after watching the recent DARPA Challenge that, while it might appear at first glance that we are still decades away from the robotic ad- vances promised by our favourite TV shows, change may be coming a lot faster than we realize. From initial, halting steps, we may be about to take great strides. Thibault raised a number of intriguing questions for the conference as robotics take a greater hold on the profession of arms – about the adaptability of procure- ment systems and, in particular, about the effect of "moral" de-skilling if respon- sibilities for lethal actions are transferred to autonomous systems. But he also laid out five considerations for the military as it assesses the intro- duction of technology: the type of tech (in this case, robotic autonomy); the end use and context of use; the strategic implications; the impact of the technology and the possible unintended consequences; and the problematic relationship be- tween humans and machines. If the Deloitte study highlights anything, it's the need for preparation. The sooner tough questions are answered and investments made, the better prepared militaries will be. Because as Singer noted, they don't really have a choice: "This technology is coming, like it or not. So better to adapt the doctrine now." Chris thatcher, Editor e eDItOr's NOTE 4 JUNE/JULY 2015 A disruptive force

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