A group of students who are studying International Relations at the Lusiada Lisbon University and their professor Dr Luis Saraiva visited the JALLC on 26 November 2019. The aim of the visit was to ensure that the students were aware of the NATO presence in Portugal and knew what the JALLC is and what it does.
The JALLC’s Chief of Staff COL Paulo Rodrigues welcomed the students to the JALLC, emphasising the importance of this kind of visit to the JALLC and other NATO Commands. This was followed by a presentation from Commander Francesco Pepe, LLMD Deputy Division Head, on the JALLC's history, where it fits into the NATO structure, its mission, and its work on joint analysis, lessons learned, and training.
The JALLC Advisory Training Team (JATT) provided three days of NATO Lessons Learned (LL) training to the senior staff of the NATO Counter Intelligence Centre of Excellence (CI COE) from 19 to 21 November. The NATO CI COE is located in Krakow, Poland and opened in October 2017 to enhance NATO CI and improve the interoperability of the CI community.
The training covered NATO LL policy, capability, and processes to support the NATO CI COE's Analysis and LL Branch and provided advice on applying the NATO LL policy, capability, and processes to the CI discipline. The JATT training was also the first engagement between the JALLC and the NATO CI COE, laying a foundation to build upon for future interactions.
The NATO CI COE is an International Military Organization. Although it is accredited by NATO, a COE is not part of the NATO Command Structure (NCS), but forms part of the wider framework supporting the NCS. It acts as a catalyst for NATO adaptation and operations, by supporting the development, promotion, and implementation of new policies, concepts, strategies, and doctrine.
As part of the JALLC’s Programme of Work for 2019, the JALLC Advisory and Training Team conducted a five-day Lessons Learned Management Course (LLMC) from 21 to 25 October at the NATO School Oberammergau, Germany. This was the first time that such a course had been trialled.
The LLMC was attended by 22 students from NATO Command Structure HQs, CoEs and Allied Nations who already had an advanced level of Lessons Learned (LL) expertise. The aim was to prepare students for their duties in the planning, administration, and execution of LL Staff Officer functions and services within NATO.
The course covered NATO LL reference documents and concepts, the NATO LL Portal, how to undertake LL Training for Points of Contact and Key Leaders, and LL documentation for Exercises and Operations.
The LLMC provided an opportunity for experienced LL personnel to enhance and strengthen their knowledge of NATO's LL Capability as a learning organization, by providing a closer look at the LL process. The students also analysed the reasons why LL Capabilities within organizations might not be fully efficient or effective.
Day 3 of NLLC 19 began with two presentations on Lessons Learned (LL) from our Partner nations.
Ms Jane Chirwa, the African Union Commission knowledge management officer, spoke about LL from African Standby Forces and Peace and Security Operations.
She said that in 2016 the AU Peace and Security Council noticed that there was very little documentation on the challenges and successes of operations, particularly the long-running AU Mission in Somalia.
A LL Process, drawing from the experience of other international organizations including NATO, was therefore set up, with guiding principles of early stakeholder involvement, internal (member state) drivers, non-attribution of issues raised and safe spaces for sharing, sharing of information and cyclical feedback loops.
This LL Process has been a success and, for the future, the aim will be to enhance it by continuing to learn from NATO’s approach to LL, as well as learning from internal experiences, and benefiting from LL training.
Colonel (ret.) Yuri Pashchuk, of the National Army Academy, Ukraine, spoke about the approach to improving the Ukrainian Army LL Capability.
The current system had been inherited from the Soviet Union in 1991, with improvements being made as a result of learning from operations in Afghanistan. The system has since changed to meet the needs of modern warfare and the current global security threat environment.
The challenges that the Ukraine faced are similar to those faced by all organizations in developing a LL Capability as have been presented at this event.
The Ukraine’s priority was now to embrace interoperability going forward and a roadmap to get there was produced in December 2018.
The focus of the day then moved to New Technologies.
Mr Stefan Olaru, research analyst at the JALLC, introduced the Panel, reminding the audience of the state of play after the New Technologies Event 2018. He provided a brief overview of progress since then, which was followed by a set of related updates.
The first of these updates was from Commander Dietmar Teufel, HQ SACT Innovation Branch Senior Analyst, who spoke about innovation and exploiting disruptive technologies.
In this context, he highlighted the ACT innovation hub, a network of scientists and academics which was launched in 2012, which can be asked find innovative solutions to complex problems, amongst others through issuing innovation challenges to experts inside and outside of NATO; and ACT’s innovation branch, created in May 2019, which is tasked with matching solutions to ACT’s problems and pain points.
He then gave a brief overview of the Emerging and Disruptive Technologies (EDT) Roadmap. The aim of the EDT Roadmap is to exploit technologies to inform policy changes, inform defence planning, feed future capabilities, and ensure interoperability by design. EDT Roadmap activities are prioritized through five main Lines of Effort.
He noted that SACT’s intention is clear – we should not just talk about New Technologies but should deliver through them.
There were then three short updates from the JALLC’s own research analysts.
Referring to the EDT Roadmap, Mr Stefan Olaru stepped onto the stage again to speak about the LL Enabling Line of Effort of the EDT Roadmap, providing an overview of its status.
He noted that SACT’s call for a new LL toolset in early 2018 had been well accepted and, in response, the JALLC organized the New Technologies Event 2018, inviting representatives from NATO and the Nations, industry and academia, to look at how existing New Technology could potentially improve the NATO LL Capability, and in particular the NATO Lessons Learned Portal.
The next step for the JALLC was to conduct analysis on all the data gathered at that Event which resulted in the identification of a number of challenges and corresponding technology that had the potential to address those challenges from the review of some 112 technological applications and products on the market.
Finally, the JALLC has since sponsored NCIA to collect data from Exercise TRJE 18– a total of 3.9 terabytes – and is using that dataset to investigate the potential of Big Data analysis tools.
Mr Filipe Vieira then spoke about the exploration of LL data using data science tools.
The aim was to consider how to capture and analyse the largely untapped dataset of LL from operations, missions and exercises, and from data already uploaded to the NATO LL Portal including from existing Lessons, documents, and reports.
If machine learning could analyze large amounts of data for keywords and trends, analysis could be done much more efficiently and at the pace needed.
The aim was for the technology to help analysts to analyse, not to have spend time extracting the nuggets of information.
A particular challenge would be to ensure that whatever was developed was replicable for other datasets.
Finally, Ms Mihaela Racovita spoke about the JALLC’s project on NATO Exercise Big Data exploration.
Big Datasets, characterized by volume, velocity, and variety of the data, may contain embedded Observations, Best Practices, and Lessons Identified that are never reported, as well as contextual information about Lessons, and clues about the needs of Lessons Learned users.
The Alliance needs to learn how to access that information as quickly as possible and navigate the challenges in doing so.
In the context of this particular project, the JALLC was considering:
how we can use Exercise data to increase the quality of NATO LL Portal products;
how we can help people access the right LL information at the right time;
whether we can extract tacit knowledge; and
whether we can construct predictive LL models.
Expectations need to be managed; Big Data was not a universal cure.
We will need to learn from experimentation and from our failures as well as our successes.
Colonel Paul Malessa, HQ SACT CAPDEV, then presented the new governance model for NATO’s common-funded capability delivery.
After the Cold War, the urgency in delivering new capabilities reduced and the timescales for capability development have relaxed.
With the current speed of technological development, there is a renewed sense of urgency to develop the capabilities the Alliance will need to meet new and challenging threats at the speed of relevance.
A new governance model has therefore been instituted, which has to be followed from beginning to end to be effective. The value added is a reduction in timescales, clearer responsibilities, greater transparency and flexibility, and full coverage of DOTMLPFI.
There was then a set of presentations providing a range of external, Non-NATO perspectives on New Technologies.
Mr Miguel Pinto Luz, the Deputy Mayor of Cascais, the Municipality of the NLLC 2019 Venue, gave a local perspective on how Cascais has been a Smart City for 650 years.
The city has evolved from being technology driven to being technology enabled, led by the city council. The next step will be for citizens and companies to use the technology to co-create the city with the council.
The key is data capture, coordination, and management, which will free up elected politicians to focus on being strategists, visionaries, and social builders.
Mr Al Musgrove of US J7 then provided a national perspective from the United States, speaking about the US Joint LL Information System.
He described its good points, and of course its challenges, noting that a new system is being developed and is expected to be ready in two years.
The aim is for the new system to be interoperable internally with other US systems and externally with NATO.
Mr Charles Macmillan, of the European Commission Joint Research Centre, gave the International Organization perspective, speaking about the Europe Media Monitor.
He explained how in 2002 the European Commission had replaced its “cut and paste” news monitoring system for its spokespeople with a tool that scoured 11,000 relevant news sites and 3,000 articles each day.
The aim is to provide information in usable format – with keyword searching, alerts on clustering and trends, and the top 10 stories by each of the 70 languages.
In the afternoon, there was the opportunity for the audience to present questions to the panel and listen in on the discussion as well as react via the Crowdicity app, the live interactive tool accompanying the NLLC 19.
The Panel discussed how the rapid deployment of New Technologies would impact on their work, the importance of incremental and modular development of systems, how the procurement systems helped and hindered, how to stimulate innovation through technology, as well as the extent to which technology could replace human effort.
The final event of the New Technologies Panel was to invite a representative sample of the NLLC audience on stage to present and explain their needs from a new LL tool.
The aim was to prompt a flurry pf ideas to be captured by the Crowdicty App to help inform the conference outcomes and to help the JALLC better understand what the NATO Lessons Learned Community was looking for in any new Lessons Learned Tool to be developed in the (near) future.
The ideas being submitted and related comments were on screen in real time for the audience to see, and the results were immediately displayed in a Word Cloud diagram (see picture).
Brigadier General Bogdan Cernat then closed the conference with some final thoughts, noting that the event had been both productive and informative. He noted that that the three days of the NATO Lessons Learned Conference had made it clear to him that the NATO Lessons Learned Community needs to better recognize where it needs to change and to actively seek the pain points to find where that change was necessary. He also noted that change inevitably means a risk of failure, but that we cannot be afraid to fail, because to fail is to learn.
There will be much more from the conference in the magazine-style summary that will be published soon and made available on the JALLC’s website at www.jallc.nato.int and on the NATO Lessons Learned Portal.
In the meantime, you can find an impression of the final day of NLLC 19 in the Gallery.
Day 2 of NLLC 19 focused on providing SACT and SACEUR with recommendations on how to make the NATO Lessons Learned (LL) system more relevant and effective in improving NATO’s warfare capability.
It began with Rear Admiral James Kirk, Deputy Commander and Chief of Staff of the Joint Warfare Centre (JWC), speaking about his experience of transforming LL from Exercises into doctrine.
He explained how NATO Exercises are becoming increasingly complex, with more stakeholders and participants, and diverse training audiences.
Their value is not just in testing HQ processes, but also in exposing the different levels of command to each other’s ways of planning.
Exercises are testbeds to put new organizations and doctrines under scrutiny. They are where we can muster manpower and materiel and try them out.
It was important to test in challenging circumstances and to understand that what hurts us makes us stronger. We adapt at the point of pain.
Ms Louise Hoehl, NATO Communication and Information Agency (NCIA), then spoke about the Agency’s experiences of doing LLs at Exercise Trident Juncture 2018 (TRJE 18).
NCIA supports over 20 Exercises each year, but TRJE 18 was on a different scale with much greater complexity. Senior management at NCIA was therefore keen to use TRJE 18 as an opportunity to capture its own lessons and to make its own improvements.
NCIA experienced some of the challenges all NATO organizations face when doing LL, such as how to capture observations, turn them into Lessons Identified and then actually learn those Lessons.
Air Commodore Philip Lester, UK Development Concept and Doctrine Centre, spoke about LL in the Space and Cyber domains.
He said that we need to get better at remembering the Lessons that had already been learned, before considering new Lessons.
It was important that LL and doctrine should provide the baseline of understanding from which leadership can make their decisions.
Resources are not used effectively if leadership assumes too quickly that a situation is totally new. It is important to get the jumping off point right.
It is a challenge for both NATO and the Nations to integrate the new domains of Space and Cyber into the existing operational domain structure of air, land, and sea. What we need for the future is an integrated five-domain concept – not three domains plus two.
Learning Lessons at the level of an individual Nation is difficult. It is much more so in an Alliance of 29. He reminded the audience of the indirect benefits from the NATO LL Process from, for example, liaison with colleagues: the journey is important as well as the destination.
In the fourth of this set of presentations, Mr Cornelious (Ham) Doraton, US Army NATO Interoperability/Standardization Representative, spoke about standardization and interoperability LL.
He reminded participants that the military is small in comparison with society as a whole, but its role is very important.
Standardization is vital both in NATO and in everyday life. Standards are the glue that holds NATO together.
He asked the audience why interoperability is important to NATO, the answer being because the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.
He described how he has worked with the JALLC over the years to embed interoperability standardization through the Capable Logistician Exercises.
Participants then had the opportunity to discuss the issues raised on the Crowdicity App with the Panel of speakers.
During the Panel discussion, there was a call for greater synergy of the JALLC, the JWC, and the Joint Forces Training Centre (JFTC), also known as JJJs, both in general, and specifically to improve the NATO LL Process.
In that connection, there was a need to engage more with the Centres of Excellence and specific Communities of Interest as the Subject Matter Experts.
In the second set of presentations, Professor Heidi Hardt of the University of California, Irvine, spoke about overcoming barriers to learning within the Alliance and how international organizations develop institutional memory.
Her research from 2015 with 120 NATO elites had indicated that there could be inadvertent barriers to LL in NATO.
She noted that her research suggests a preference for informal rather than formal methods for capturing and sharing Lessons organizationally, such as memos or Food for Thought papers.
Professor Hardt also raised the point that NATO’s military rotation and civilian personnel contracting policy can make it difficult to retain institutional memory.
Dr. Henrik Heidenkamp, ACO SHAPE Strategic Management Planning, presented on the links between LL and Strategic Management.
The subject was timely, given that Allied Command Operations (ACO) had recently revised its Strategic Management directive, including adding references to the NATO LL capability, and was about to publish its new Strategic Management Plan.
The aim of ACO’s Strategic Management was to enhance the efficient and effective development of ACO. It can do so more effectively, validly and reliably if it is based on LL.
A Lessons-based execution of the ACO’s Strategic Management System can also improve the justification for ACO’s resource requirements.
Dr. Heidenkamp said that it was important to align and integrate processes so that the Strategic Management community knew about the LL community and vice versa.
As the conference had already heard from various speakers, there are cultural, organizational, and educational challenges for NATO which affect Strategic Management and the linkage with LL.
Dr. Heidenkamp said that his point is not that we cannot make progress. We have to accept, however, that these challenges are inherent to the organization and are not going to change in the short term.
We should define success against the organization as it is, rather than the organization as we think it is or would like it to be.
Finally, Dr Tom Dyson of Royal Holloway University of London spoke about LL best practice from the perspective of the individual Nation and a bottom-up approach.
Dr Dyson described the British Army’s experience of a high-level review team to look at observations in the first instance, with remedial action then overseen by a cross-functional team.
Dr Dyson described factors that can make a difference to organizational culture and can incentivize people to behave in certain ways.
Again, there was the chance for discussion of all the ideas raised by the Panel, with interesting conversation about intelligence sharing, appropriate tools for analysis, the role of artificial intelligence and machine learning, how to present LL information in a way that would find traction with NATO leadership, and how to provide safe spaces for honest reflection.
Today was the first day of the NATO Lessons Learned Conference 2019 (NLLC 19), hosted by the JALLC.
Participants from NATO, the Nations and academia came together to share, discuss, learn, and challenge.
This year, the theme of the NATO Lessons Learned Conference is improving NATO’s Lessons Learned capability to enhance NATO’s warfighting capability.
Supreme Allied Commander Transformation General André Lanata welcomed participants to the conference by video.
He said that their mission for the conference was an important and timely one. The character of warfare evolves, and NATO needed to Observe, Orientate, Decide and Act faster in the new operating environments.
The NATO Lessons Learned (LL) Process has to ensure that we learn faster and better from our experiences. He encouraged us to think added value, and bring our ideas to shape the NATO LL Process.
The JALLC’s Commander Brigadier General Bogdan Cernat welcomed participants to the highly innovative NOVA School of Business and Economics, in Lisbon, and to what would be the Smartest NATO Lessons Learned Conference in terms of technology so far.
He said that this event combined the annual NLLC with the follow-on to the very successful NATO New Technology Event 2018, to maximize synergies and opportunities.
There are two key elements in the drive for more effective Warfare Development. The first is Lessons Learned, to ensure that we learn faster and better from our experiences.
The second is New Technology, to ensure that we understand how technology is changing the very nature of future military conflict and that we can harness it for the benefit of the Alliance.
Brigadier General Ilmars Lejins, Assistant Chief of Staff, Joint Force Development, opened the day’s presentations, speaking about the status of implementing the NATO Lessons Learned Capability and the way ahead.
He discussed the gaps in governance, the JALLC, the NATO LL Portal (NLLP) and NATO’s LL culture, and how the new NATO-wide Lessons Learned Plan for 2020 to 2025 would add value and help to fill those gaps.
Colonel Manuel Santos, SHAPE J5, said that the warfighting capability that NATO needed was constantly evolving.
The past few years had seen an emphasis on readiness, multinationality, and responsiveness, all of which increased the need for interoperability.
The aim of having highly capable, deployable and trained forces required a culture of interoperability by design, and not as an afterthought.
Before lunch, there was a demonstration by Crowdicity of its collaboration and ideas-generating platform, and everyone was encouraged to use it to log ideas, questions and comments and respond to the daily NLLC 19 challenge.
After lunch, Lieutenant Colonel Fabrizio Ottaviani, JALLC, spoke about the status of the NATO LL Capability, from the JALLC perspective.
He highlighted certain aspects of the implementation of the NATO LL Capability that seemed to require attention.
difficulties in filling LL posts and keeping post-holders focused on LL;
hierarchical and functional issues;
the use of generic rather than HQ-specific documentation;
effective responsibility for recommendations sent to HQs; and
the LL mindset and culture.
The root cause seems to be the current prioritization given to LL in NATO.
LTC Ottaviani noted that action at any level would be likely to make a difference, and participants were asked to think about what they could do to address potential challenges.
Mr David Noon, JALLC, spoke next about the insights JALLC had obtained from supporting the LL process at Exercise TRIDENT JUNCTURE 2018 (TRJE 18).
From its analysis, the JALLC had identified differences between the execution of the NATO LL Process during routine HQ activity, and the execution during a major exercise, such as TRJE 18
These differences were likely to be the result of:
the increased volume of lessons identified during an Exercise, and the speed at which they entered the system;
the complexity of the situations described in the data, which went beyond the expertise of any specific HQ;
the raw state of the data; and
keeping the relevant people engaged in the NATO LL Working Groups and analysis after the end of the Exercise, once they had returned to regular duty.
Although many issues are raised during an Exercise, these do not necessarily find their way into the NLLP, and can potentially create a real-world risk.
As a result of the analysis of the NATO LL Process during TRJE 18, it is becoming clear that the NATO LL Process and the reporting process for Exercises are not meshing well. For example, the First Impressions Report for an Exercise has to be produced within 15 days, whereas defining a Lesson Identified takes considerably longer under the NATO LL Process.
Lieutenant Colonel Rigo Genz, JALLC, then presented the recent developments in training for the NATO LL Capability.
LL Training was added in early 2018 as a fourth pillar to the NATO LL Capability – in addition to LL Structure, Process, and Tools.
As well as the online two-hour course for general awareness, the JALLC Advisory and Training Team (JATT), and the five-day LL Staff Officer Course for Subject Matter Experts, a new NATO LL Management Course will be offered for the first time the week after NLLC 19 in Oberammergau, Germany.
This course will provide the opportunity for hands-on experience and a deeper dive into the subject.
The final presentation of the afternoon was provided by Commander Pedro Viegas, JALLC, on the subject of NLLP developments.
He described the development of the NLLP, partly the result of increased data migration from the NATO Command Structure.
Commander Viegas highlighted that:
The JALLC has implemented over 180 improvements to the way that the NLLP worked.
In the short term, the JALLC is working on the NLLP Improvement Plan 2019.
In the medium term, there will be further NLLP improvement, implementation of the new NATO LL Plan 2020-25, and the integration of New Technologies.
It is expected that the NATO Communication and Information Agency will take over some of the technical functions of the NLLP from 2020.
In the longer term, the focus will be on a new LL Toolset with plans to discontinue the present NLLP from 2025.
There was then the opportunity for participants to discuss three topics emerging from the Crowdicity App discussion, with participants rising to Brigadier General Bogdan’s challenge to come up with their big ideas, bright ideas, and best ideas.
On 03 October 2019, Vice Admiral Alfonso Fernández de Córdoba, Deputy Chief of Staff to Allied Command Transformation’s (ACT) Joint Force Development Directorate, visited the JALLC in order to improve awareness and understanding of the JALLC's role within NATO, the NATO Lessons Learned Capability and the JALLC's contribution to the Alliance’s objectives.
The visit started with an Office Call with Brigadier General Bogdan Cernat, the JALLC’s Commander, followed by a tailored briefing during which Vice Admiral Fernández de Córdoba was able to discuss the NATO Lessons Learned Processes and the JALLC’s activities and products.
Vice Admiral Fernández de Córdoba departed with words of appreciation for the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the JALLC. He also added that in this unique period of change for ACT and NATO, he was looking forward to working with the JALLC over the next few years.
The JALLC is always ready to open its doors to visitors who want to find out more about what the organization does and how Lessons Learned contribute to the transformation of the Alliance. Over the past couple of weeks, the JALLC has received visits from three distinguished groups: the Directorate of Research, Doctrine, Organization and Materiel (DIDOM) from Spain, 50 participants on the Portuguese Air Force Senior Enlisted Course and their supervisors, and 32 participants on the Portuguese Junior Diplomatic Service Officers Course and their professors.
The JALLC has a basic tour and visit programme for its visitors which is tailored to meet each visiting group’s specific interests. Our visitors might like to know more about how the NATO Lessons Learned Capability works, or perhaps how Joint Analysis contributes to the NATO Lessons Learned Process, or even how the JALLC’s Advisory and Training Teams reach out to the Allies and partners across the globe. Each visit is unique and is accompanied by a team of JALLC staff assigned especially for the purpose because of their expertise or background to ensure our visitors have the most informative and enjoyable visit possible.
Visitors are invited to sign the book of honour and pictures are taken to commemorate the visit.
These recent three visits were no different and the JALLC’s Command Group and staff had the pleasure of meeting and exchanging ideas and views with the visitors in presentations, discussion sessions, and office calls.
This year’s conference will return to a more traditional conference format with a fascinating variety of speakers from NATO, Nations, Partners and Academia. You will have the chance to share insights into the latest LL developments in NATO, engage with leadership perspectives on LL, learn from studies into what works and what doesn’t work and how to incorporate best practices into your everyday work, discover new tools to support your work, and be part of the requirements definition for NATO's new LL toolset
Among our distinguished speakers this year, we are honoured to welcome General Ilmars Lejins, NATO HQ SACT Assistant Chief of Staff Joint Forces Development, Rear Admiral James A. Kirk, Chief of Staff NATO Joint Warfare Centre and published authors Prof. Heidi Hard and Dr Tom Dyson.
We will also use a new high tech approach to audience participation which will enable your full active participation throughout. We look forward you joining us and the rest of the NATO LL Community for a riveting three days at our modern beachfront conference venue.
On 23 and 18 September, the JALLC's Editor, Ms. Jodie Lazell, delivered another iteration of the Analytical Writing Methods Course to JALLC newcomers and those who wanted to refresh their organized thinking and drafting skills. The course—five modules—focusses on providing students with the tools and skills necessary to organize their thoughts before they start writing and then how to build a solid argument. The course also includes modules on critical thinking and how to review documents which provides the students with an additional perspective when it comes to writing analytical documents
JALLC staff produce a wide variety of documents on a daily basis, from Joint Analysis Reports to NATO Lessons Learned Capability Assessment Reports, from Lessons Learned Active Content Management Reports to Point Papers on a host of Lessons Learned related topics. It is therefore important that the JALLC's staff are able to write clear, concise, and well-argued pieces. This course is always well-received and forms part of the JALLC's wider in-house training programme which also includes the well-known JALLC Analyst Training Course.
The next iteration of the JALLC's Analytical Writing Methods Course will take place in the spring of 2020. Final dates will be announced when available.
Subject Matter Experts (SME) gathered at the JALLC from 06 to 08 August to take part in an Air-Land Integration (ALI) Workshop in support of a study currently being conducted by the JALLC into the current NATO Tactical Air Command and Control (TacAirC2) Model and how it could be optimized in a Major Joint Operation Plus (MJO+) scenario to enable effective dynamic ALI.
In total, 21 SMEs participated in the Workshop who came from HQs from across the NATO Command Structure, the NATO Force Structure, and from National entities such as the US 19th Battlefield Coordination Detachment (19th BCD), the US 4th Air Support Operations Group, and the UK Air Support Operations Squadron (UK ASOS). The principal aim of the Workshop was to provide a forum for SMEs to discuss the current challenges associated with NATO TacAirC2, receive briefings on how Nations conduct TacAirC2, and discuss potential options and risks associated with conducting effective TacAirC2 in an MJO+ scenario.
The Workshop was spread over two and half days. The first day was dedicated to a series of briefings that included a presentation by a representative from HQ Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (HQ ARRC) to outline the background to the study. A representative from Allied Air Command provided its perspective on the topic, and briefings were also provided by representatives from the 19th BCD and UK ASOS on how they conduct TacAirC2 in their respective Nations. Additionally, a representative from the Deployed Air Command and Control Centre (DACCC) provided a brief on Exercise EAGLE METEOR 2019 which, later this year, will be a data collection venue for this JALLC study.
The second day was dedicated to syndicate work. Attendees were split into two groups for two separate syndicate sessions dedicated to developing three outputs: first, the projected Air-Land structure in an MJO+ scenario with their respective liaison and command elements; second, the creation of Business Process Models to capture the current and future air support request processes; and third, potential options to enable dynamic ALI. The third day focused on consolidation of the previous days’ discussions and agreement on how the JALLC could take the project forward in terms of further data collection opportunities.
In June 2019, NATO’s Joint Analysis Lessons Learned Centre (JALLC) and the Swedish Armed Forces International Centre (SWEDINT), celebrated the 10th Anniversary of the NATO Lessons Learned Staff Officer Course (LLSOC) in Stockholm, Sweden.
For this special edition of the LLSOC, Course Director, JALLC’s LTC Rigo Genz, was joined by seven instructors/staff members who helped facilitate the course; two of whom were part of the first edition of the LLSOC back in May of 2009: Mr Andrew Eden from the Joint Warfare Centre (JWC) (a former contractor working for the JALLC) and Ms. Christine Kurzeja from the SWEDINT staff. During the course, LTC Genz, on behalf of Commander JALLC, handed over a JALLC plaque to the new SWEDINT Commander, Colonel Ronnie Nilsson, as a token of the JALLC’s appreciation for 10 years of continued support to the success of the LLSOC.
The LLSOC has been NATO’s premier course in training Lessons Learned staff officers and points of contact these last 10 years. During this successful decade of training, the JALLC has managed the course curriculum and SWEDINT has magnificently hosted the course in Sweden. The course focuses on the implementation of the NATO’s Lessons Learned Capability, covering the NATO Lessons Learned Process, relevant analysis techniques, how Lessons Learned work in operations and during training and exercises, and LL Practitioner Information.
This recent edition of the LLSOC received 36 students from 17 NATO Nations and four Non-NATO NATIONS from Australia, Austria, Finland, and the Ukraine.
The feedback from these students was that the course was well-received, as always, with an overall 97% student satisfaction. The students felt the content was well-presented with a good balance of briefs and practical exercises. The JALLC and SWEDINT will, as usual, continue to refine and improve the course curriculum based on all of the student feedback. Here’s to another 10 years of excellence in the LLSOC.
This year the JALLC is once again hosting an annual get together for the NATO Lessons Learned (LL) Community. The NATO LL Conference (NLLC) 2019, which will be held from 14 to 16 October, will combine the traditional NLLC concept—which focusses on a theme of relevance to the NATO LL-Community—with the NATO New Technologies Event (NTE) concept—which was launched successfully last year, and which provides a forum to present and discuss New Technologies in the context of LL.
During the first two and a half days of the event, Attendees will receive briefings and presentations on the main conference theme of: Improving the NATO LL Capability in order to enhance NATO's warfighting capability. This theme is right at the heart of what the JALLC does in terms of Lessons Learned and includes presentations on related topics from JALLC staff as well as from prominent guest speakers. The conference format also provides an opportunity for group discussion and audience interaction and will be another interesting edition of this revered event in the NATO LL Calendar.
The last afternoon of the NLLC is given over to New Technologies in the LL Context and follows on from the NTE in 2018. Attendees to this last afternoon of the NLLC will be focussing on insights and best practices relevant for the development of a new LL Toolset. Again, attendees will be briefed by subject matter experts from the JALLC, the wider NATO structure, as well as from Non-NATO Entities. Attendees will have also the opportunity to share their ideas and contribute their requirements for a future NATO LL Toolset.
The NLLC 2019 will be held at Nova School of Business & Economics (Nova SBE) in Carcavelos. Sat sweetly in between Lisbon and the beautiful coastal town Cascais, Nova SBE was recently inaugurated and boasts some impressive facilities and a fantastic location for the NLLC 2019. You can find out more about NOVA SBE here: https://www2.novasbe.unl.pt/en/about-us/nova-sbe-at-a-glance.
The 7th Lessons Learned Workshop (LLWS ) of the Counter Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) Centre of Excellence (C-IED COE) was conducted at Hoyo de Manzanares, Spain, from 11 to 13 June 2019.
Two JALLC Staff members attended this workshop. They led a panel on "Information Exchange and National Solutions" and gave presentations on the NATO LL Portal and the Analysis Process used in JALLC projects.
The aim of the LLWS was to feed information to the NATO Lessons Learned structures to contribute to the improvement of NATO and national operations and to increase the knowledge of the missions that different nations/agencies are conducting in countries with a high IED threat, in order to facilitate and enhance interaction in the multinational C-IED community.
The LLWS focussed on several topics relating to LL in the C-IED disciplines, like threat analysis from the theatre, support to NATO training activities, and cooperation amongst the COEs.
The C-IED COE is an International Military Organization, manned and funded by contributions from 12 Nations. Although it is accredited by NATO, a COE is not part of the NATO Command Structure (NCS), but forms part of the wider framework supporting the NCS.
Logistics units from 30 nations gathered together in northern Poland from late May to mid-July in order to “exercise multinational logistics and to enhance interoperability among nations.” Planned and coordinated by the Multinational Logistics Coordination Centre (MLCC) in Prague, and supported by Poland as Host Nation (HN), Exercise CAPABLE LOGISTICIAN 2019 (CL19) served as an opportunity to train NATO and Partner Nations, NATO Command Structure (NCS), and NATO Force Structure (NFS), among others. CL exercises are conducted, typically, every two years, with participation varying according to nations’ willingness and availability. A large part of the value of the exercise comes from the reporting of the Evaluation, Analysis, and Reporting Cell (EARC), which uses a team of functional area experts (areas include water, fuel, smart energy, and ammunition, among others) to make observations, analyses, and evaluations of various parts of the exercise. The results of this work are pulled together in a final exercise report, using the NATO Lessons Identified format, to make recommendations directly to the various standardization boards and working groups within the NATO Military Committee.
To support the EARC's process and products, the JALLC has deployed a small team of civilian and military analysts to CL iterations in 2013, 2015, and 2019. The JALLC team plays a key role by integrating into the EARC, ensuring the quality of the data collected, and providing the analytical support to bring the bigger "NATO picture" to the functional area experts’ individual observations. The work of the EARC at each of these exercises has resulted in over 50 different observations across logistics functional areas and even more recommendations. In fact, over 90% of the recommendations from the CL15 report were endorsed by the Nations through the Military Committee, resulting in direct input and improvements to NATO military doctrine, tactics, and procedures at the heart of NATO standardization and interoperability. The final reporting from CL19 will be no different and is expected in autumn 2019.
Today, 24 June 2019, the JALLC celebrated the change of command from Brigadier General (BGEN) Antonio Nascimento from the Portuguese Air Force to BGEN Bogdan Cernat from the Romanian Army. The ceremony was attended by Her Excellency, Ioana Bivolaru, the Ambassador of Romania to Portugal, the Portuguese Chief of Defence, Admiral Silva Ribeiro, the Chief of Staff of the Portuguese Army, General Jose Nunes de Fonseca, Vice Chief of Staff of the Portuguese Navy, Vice Admiral Jorge Novo Palma representing the Chief of Staff of the Portuguese Navy, the Portuguese Air Force Chief of Staff, General Nunes Borrego, and other distinguished guests as well as the JALLC staff.
During the ceremony, BGEN Nascimento reminded the audience of the achievements of the JALLC in the past year, including the consolidation of the ongoing changes in connection with the refocussing of the JALLC's mission, as well as the development of a plan to ensure incremental improvements to the NATO Lessons Learned Portal using new technology, and the importance of the Analysis Projects covering NATO-wide topics such as Building Integrity, Lessons from Trident Juncture 2018, New Technologies for Lessons Learned.
After the change of command ceremony, the JALLC’s new commander, BGEN Cernat, addressed the audience noting that his first impression of the JALLC was positive and that, “We must be ready to respond to the challenges the Alliance faces and serve the Allies in the best way possible.” His speech reflected the necessity to keep the JALLC flexible, responsive, and resilient in the face of the challenges the Alliance faces.
The new Commander JALLC, BGEN Bogdan Cernat, was born in Bucharest, Romania. Throughout his career BGEN Cernat has received several awards and medals, granted by various entities, including at the presidential level. His full CV is available at the JALLC official webpage.
As part of a visit to Portugal, the NATO's Investment Committee (IC) visited the Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Centre (JALLC) on Wednesday, 29 May.
The Chairperson of the Investment Committee, Mr. Francesco Romano, was welcomed by the acting JALLC Commander, Colonel Angel Santamaria. During the visit, Mr. Luca Ranise, Head of the Budget and Finance Branch, updated the IC on JALLC’ s role within the Alliance as the Lead Agent for Lessons Learned and on the projects to be carried out in the near future regarding the JALLC facilities.
The NATO Investment Committee is responsible for the NATO Security Investment Programme (NSIP). The NSIP covers major construction and command and control system investments, which are beyond the national defence requirements of individual member countries. It supports the roles of the NATO Strategic Commands by providing installations and facilities such as air defence communication and information systems, military headquarters for the command structure and for deployed operations, and critical airfields, fuel systems and harbour facilities needed in support of deployed forces.
The visit was hosted by the Portuguese Ministry of Defence and included visits to the NCI Academy, Navy, and Air Force.
The opening remarks were delivered by the JALLC Commander, Brigadier General António Nascimento. In his statement, General Nascimento underlined the importance of NATO-Partner Nation cooperation and emphasized the added value of this cooperation in addressing the common challenges faced by the Partner Nations and JALLC.
The seminar revolved around the JALLC, its organization and missions. The six key activities (NATO Lessons Learned Portal, Analysis, Training, Outreach, Support to Operations and Exercises, and Lessons Learned Events) were covered and subject of a fruitful discussion.
The seminar was attended by 25 Partner National Military Representatives who, at the end, express the opinion that is had been a successful event that further strengthened our mutual resolve and demonstrated the benefits of cooperation through partnerships.
As part of NATO's Lessons Learned Engagement Plan for 2019, the JALLC provided a three-day Lessons Learned (LL) training course, at the QAF Officers Training institute, located on the Ahmed Bin Mohammed Military College in Doha, Qatar.
The visit was led by General Mohammed B. Al-Badr, head of the Army Training Directorate of the QAF general staff. Attendees included officers from various branches of the QAF.
Throughout the training, the participants got acquainted with the NATO Lessons Learned Capability and Process, having also a chance to familiarize with basic analysis techniques applied to Lessons Learned scenarios.
The event took place in the framework of the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative (ICI), initiated in 2004 during the NATO summit. During the summit NATO leaders decided to launch the ICI with selected countries in the Middle East. The ICI stands alongside NATO's Partnership for Peace and the Mediterranean Dialogue programs.
The Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Centre (JALLC) Advisory Training Team (JATT) conducted a three-day Lessons learned (LL) training course from 09 to 11 April 2019 in support of 30 students belonging to the Bulgarian Defence Forces, NATO Force Structure (NFS), and NATO Organizations and Agencies.
The Bulgarian Defence Forces’ students came from nine different locations including the Defence Staff, and staff from the Navy, Army, and Air Force. NATO Force Structure students came from the Multinational Division Southeast and Multinational Brigade Southeast (Romania), NATO Force Integration Units (Bulgaria and Hungary), and the Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (Bulgaria).
NATO Force Integration Units (NFIUs) are part of the NFS. They are under the responsibility of the Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) and they are part of NATO's adaptation in the face of security challenges from the East and South. A total of six NFIUs (Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania) were officially declared full operational capability on September 2015.
The specifically tailored LL training was designed to provide an overview of the NATO LL Capability, the analysis techniques, real life examples, practical work, success stories, and the challenges of working with a LL management system. The LL training was well received by all students and the NFIU leadership.
As part of NATO's Lessons Learned Engagement Plan for 2019 and following a request by the NATO – Istanbul Cooperation Initiative Centre (ICI), the JALLC Advisory and Training Team (JATT) conducted a four-day Lessons Learned (LL) training course in Kuwait, from 08 to 11 April. In addition to the course’s main objectives of raising awareness and providing an overview of the NATO LL Capability, this year’s course was modified in accordance to ICI Centre’s needs to provide more analysis training. The course was attended by 26 students from the Military, Fire Departments, and government. The majority of the students were from the State of Kuwait. There were also some students from the State of Qatar, United Arab Emirates, and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
On 23 January 2017, the NATO-ICI Regional Centre was inaugurated by NATO Permanent Representatives and Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg together with His Highness the Prime Minister of Kuwait, Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah. The NATO-ICI Regional Centre’s objective is to improve the common understanding of security challenges by creating a level of interoperability and standardization that enables closer cooperation between NATO and its partners in the region.
As part of NATO's Lessons Learned Engagement Plan for 2019, the JALLC Advisory and Training Team (JATT) conducted a three day Lessons Learned (LL) training course from 18 to 20 March at the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC) HQ, Innsworth, United Kingdom.
HQ ARRC provides NATO with a rapidly deployable, flexible HQ that can act as a Joint, Land, or Corps HQ for operations and crisis response. Its multi-national ethos, combination of cultures and innovation, strong professional reputation, and proven track record in interoperability-including probably being the most pet friendly HQ within NATO-are unique among its High Readiness Force (Land) peers. In addition to HQ ARRC, SACEUR has eight Graduated Readiness Forces (Land) HQs under SHAPE’s operational command. Several of these HQs have taken turns in the past commanding the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, and have also taken turns providing the 12-month rotating Land Component Command or Joint Task Force headquarters for the NATO Response Force (NRF). The ARRC relinquished its responsibilities as the land component of the NRF on 10 January 2018 to NATO Rapid Deployable Corps - Italy. When not in role as the NRF, the ARRC may be required to mobilise to assist the standing NRF, becoming an intermediary HQ. NATO's long term formation rotation plan allows HQs like the ARRC to prepare and remain focused.
The LL training course was attended by 16 students from various services and with different subject matter expertise. The main objective of the course was to provide the Training Audience with an overview of the NATO LL Capability, the NATO LL Process, LL in exercises and operations, and the development and implementation of a Lesson Collection Plan and Action Plan. Moreover attendees were familiarized with the NATO LL Portal, including guidance on writing Observations, and analysis techniques. Real life examples, practical work, success stories, and challenges of a LL management system were included in the training sessions to ensure they were understood and practiced. HQ ARRC G7 LL Staff Officers had the opportunity to present the HQ ARRC LL Process and Lessons Identified Collect Tool (LICT), which have been used as the main means to collect, track, manage and share LL within HQ ARRC. In parallel with the LL training course, Key Leader Training was conducted, attended by 12 officers and one Flag Officer from Command Group.
The JALLC training event was a valuable opportunity to strengthen the LL community within HQ ARRC. It provided a common understanding on how NATO is a continuously learning organization and highlighted the importance and benefits of sharing lessons.
This month, the JALLC delivered two in-house training events: the NATO Lessons Learned Portal Course and the Analytical Writing Methods Training 2019 Spring Edition.
The first edition of the NATO Lessons Learned Portal (NLLP) Course took place between 20 and 22 March. The aim of this course is to introduce JALLC Staff to advanced use and knowledge of the NLLP, necessary to conduct their assigned duties. The course provides participants with hands-on experience of the procedures and skills they need to fulfil their roles as well as for participating in outreach activities and other events related to the NLLP.
The next iteration of this course is planned to take place from 04 to 08 November, and will be opened to external attendees. This event will be advertised on the NLLP in July and will require a minimum of one-year of experience as NLLP Local Manager.
We are also working together with NATO School Oberammergau to develop an “LL Management Course” at the school, which will be specifically designed for non-JALLC personnel. The intention is to have this course up and running by the fourth quarter of the year.
The Analytical Writing Methods Training 2019 Spring Edition took place on 19 and 20 March.
The course provides guiding principles on how to prepare to write an analytical document, including how to organize the ideas to be presented and how to build a convincing argument. The training also provides guidance on applicable NATO writing standards and how to self-edit your own work.
Seven JALLC staff members, STRIKFORNATO’s Public Affairs Staff Officer and three personnel from the Portuguese Armed Forces HQ attended this course, which was the first time it has been opened up to non-JALLC staff members. By the end of the course, the students were able to understand the Pyramid Principle, the five elements of an argument, and to apply critical thinking and self-editing techniques to their writing projects.
As part of NATO’s Lessons Learned (LL) Engagement Plan for 2019, the JALLC Advisory and Training Team (JATT) conducted a three-day LL training course from 12 to 14 March at the NATO Rapid Deployable Corps – Greece (NRDC-GR).
NRDC-GR is a multinational HQ, one of the nine Graduated Readiness Forces Land HQs, of the NATO Force Structure (NFS). From September 2015 and on, NRDC-GR has initiated its transformation to Joint Task Force (JTF) HQ and Joint Logistic Support Group (JLSG) in the context of its mission for the Alliance. In June 2018, NRDC-GR successfully completed the NATO Evaluation as a JTF HQ and also assumed the commitment of a Stand by force in NATO Forces Long Term Commitment Plan.
The training course was attended by 26 students, from various services and with different subject matter expertise. The course’s main objective was to provide the Training Audience an overview of the NATO LL Capability, analysis techniques applied by the JALLC, real life examples, practical work, success stories, and how to address some of the challenges of implementing a LL management system.
The event was a valuable opportunity to strengthen and broaden the NATO LL Community. It provided a common understanding on how NATO is a continuously learning organization, highlighting the benefits of lessons sharing.
On 01 March 2019, Ms. Rose Gottemoeller, NATO Deputy Secretary General, paid a visit to the JALLC in order to gain a better understanding of the role the JALLC plays within NATO, the NATO Lessons Learned Process, and the JALLC's contribution to the Alliance’s objectives.
The visit included a briefing, during which the JALLC explained Who We Are, What We Do and Why We Do It, and how the JALLC contributes to the transformation of the Alliance.
Ms. Rose Gottemoeller departed highlighting the important work the JALLC does and wishing the JALLC the best of luck in our role as NATO’s lead agent for Lessons Learned.
One of the Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Centre (JALLC) activities is Outreach. Outreach activities aim to raise awareness of the NATO Lessons Learned Capability and how it contributes to the Alliance transformation across NATO and among Allies, Partners, and other organizations.
In this context, the JALLC supported the Romanian Lessons Learned Staff Officer Course, organized by the Training and Doctrine Directorate of the Romanian Defence Staff.
The Romanian Lessons Learned Staff Officer Course is designed to train Lessons Learned specialists to support continued and improved implementation of the Lessons Learned Capability. The course took place in Bucharest, between 18 February and 01 March and was attended by 13 students from various Romanian Military HQs. The JALLC representative briefed the audience on aspects related to innovation in Lessons Learned as well as on how new technologies could be used in support of Lessons Learned and supported the relevant syndicate discussions.
In another outreach engagement this month, the JALLC engaged with FIEP (an International Association of National Gendarmeries and Police Forces with Military Status). The JALLC was invited to address the FIEP International Affairs Commission, which got together to discuss the topic “Preparing for future international missions: organizing time for reflection”, on 12 March 2019 in Lisbon, Portugal. At the address, the JALLC presented NATO's perspective on Lessons Learned, while exchanging thoughts and experiences with the participants. The presentation was welcomed with great interest and raised a lively discussion on the creation of a similar Lessons Learned capability within the FIEP.
As part of NATO’s Lessons Learned Engagement Plan for 2019, the JALLC Advisory and Training Team (JATT) conducted a three day Lessons Learned (LL) training course from 19 to 21 February at the Joint Force Training Centre, Bydgosz, Poland (JFTC).
The JFTC has a distinct and unique role within NATO, focusing on joint and combined training at the tactical level. Additionally, it co-operates with Allied Command Transformation, its sister organizations, national training centres, and NATO Centres of Excellence to ensure application of NATO standards and doctrine and to achieve joint tactical interoperability from Brigade to Corps level. The Centre’s motto, “Transformation Through Training,” reflects its mission.
The training course was attended by 11 JFTC members, from various services and with different subject matter expertise. The course’s main objective was to provide the Training Audience an overview of the NATO LL Capability, the analysis techniques, real life examples, practical work, success stories and challenges of a LL management system. During the visit, the JATT also supported JFTC with the assessment of the JFTC’s implementation of the NATO LL Capability.
The event was a valuable opportunity to strengthen and enlarge the LL community and network within the JFTC. It provided a common understanding on how NATO is a continuously learning organization and highlighted the benefits of lessons sharing.
On 13 February 2019, the JALLC received the visit of Rear Admiral Guy Robinson OBE, Deputy Commander of Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO (STRIKFORNATO), and staff. The aim of the visit was for the STRIKFORNATO staff to gain situation awareness of the JALLC’s role as NATO’s Lead Agent for Lessons Learned, to present STRIKFORNATO to the JALLC and to explore the possibility of cooperation between the two.
Rear Admiral Guy Robinson, Brigadier General Jason Bohm and Brigadier General Andres Gacio had an office call with the JALLC Commander, debating NATO’s upcoming 70th Anniversary and the future relation of the two headquarters.
After the office call, the two staffs attended briefings on the JALLC and STRIKFORNATO. There, the ground for the future was laid out for the two NATO entities to cooperate and continuously transform and modernize processes, forces, and capabilities.
Rear Admiral Guy Robinson departed highlighting his hope that the visit “… is the start to a very fruitful relationship with our fellow headquarters in Lisbon.”
The JALLC has published a magazine covering the New Technologies Event 2018 which took place in October 2018.
The Magazine features articles on the various presentations which include Chief of Staff, Allied Command Transformation, Vice Admiral Bennet’s keynote speech and the JALLC Commander’s presentation on the NATO Lessons Learned Capability. The magazine also includes summaries of the presentations by the Industry and Academia Partners that were represented during the event and panel discussions that took place on the last day. You can also find an overview of the Booth Sessions and lots of information on the event itself, including how the JALLC introduced a conference web app for the first time.