Co-Revolutionary Competition:
An Alternative War Game Inspired by the New Sciences
January 14-15, 2003

INTRODUCTION
SPEAKERS
GAME TIMELINE

DOWNLOAD PDF of Game Book and Game Play (4MB)

Jeff Cares, Alidade Incorporated

Introduction

The Co-Revolutionary Competition is a new style of seminar war game developed with concepts from the “new sciences” to overcome limitations in both contemporary military gaming and corporate strategic planning.   Players explore the interplay of technology and operations in a highly competitive environment that provides frequent interaction and dynamic feedback over a four decade gaming horizon.   Although the game starts with a given set of possible futures, focused iteration by adversarial interaction drives players toward new and unexpected strategic destinations.

The game is successful if the set of futures explored cannot be foreseen from initial conditions and if players achieve a new, informed perspective of possible future outcomes of today's policy and strategy decisions.

This event was both an exciting event with very interesting speakers and was an excellent opportunity for the group to interact with some of the most innovative thought-leaders in the military, academia and business. Colleagues who were in attendance include:

  • Alidade Incorporated
  • AlphaChimp Studio
  • ADDX Corporation
  • Computerworld Magazine
  • Dartmouth College
  • Evidence Based Research, Inc.
  • IcoSystems, Inc.
  • McKearney Consulting
  • Naval Postgraduate School
  • Naval Surface Warfare Officers School
  • Naval Undersea Warfare Center
  • Naval War College
  • NextScale
  • Newport Classic
  • Office of Net Assessment (Office of the Secretary of Defense)
  • Smart Money Magazine
  • Sonalysts, Inc.

Some of the hypotheses that the game investigated were:

  • How does foregone legacy investment affect future strategic positions?
  • Is it possible to ‘lock-out' the strategies, technologies or operational concepts of an opponent?
  • What Capital Time Constants are relevant in Information Age competition?
  • What are the high leverage aspects of co-revolution (cultural factors, technology, systems integration, infrastructure, etc.)?
  • What dynamics might give rise to adversaries unintentionally synchronizing to each other (and therefore unexpectedly cooperating)?

            Senator Lincoln Chafee (R) - RI meets with the "Red Team"

The game provided a better understanding of the dynamics of Information Age competition, exploration of potentially high value-added concepts and technologies, identification of relevant ‘wild card' behaviors and insight into the impact of unintended consequences.   Since these results are just as relevant to commercial competition as they are to the military (and recognizing the tendency of military professionals to think and plan within a relatively closed institutional culture) this game was purposefully unclassified and open to the public.   A diverse group of players from academia and a wide variety of private and commercial enterprises attended.   The game was structured so that no special knowledge of the military domain was required for civilian players to be every bit as valuable to strategic interactions as their military teammates.   

Who Should Play?

The Co-Revolutionary Competition was an ideal experience for all – military and civilian – who are faced with long-range strategic investment decisions in highly dynamic and uncertain environments.   This game provides indispensable lessons for institutions in the throes of Information Age transformation – without exposing them to real-world risk, trial-and-error, failure or collapse.

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