The US Army War College Quarterly: Parameters


Allison Abbe


National security practitioners need to understand adversary motives, mindsets, and intentions to anticipate and respond to their actions effectively. Although some authors have argued empathy helps build an understanding of the adversary, research points to its cognitive component of perspective taking as the more appropriate skill for national security practitioners to have. This article synthesizes previous research on the development and application of perspective taking in analysis and decision making and recommends four ways for strategists and practitioners to enhance their ability to gain insight into adversary motives and mindsets.

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