Hutchinson, William and Warren, Matthew 2010, Influence operations and behavioural change, in ECIW 2010 : Proceedings of the 9th European Conference on Information Warfare and Security, University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece, pp. 116-119.
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The intended outcome of Information Operations appears to be a favourable change (to the instigator) in attitudes or belief systems of the target, however, the relationship between attitude and behaviour is tenuous. Propaganda and other methods of ‘influence’ are difficult to assess as the cause and effect relationship is complicated. The short term effects of psychological warfare where force is used in conjunction with influence techniques can be easily assessed; at least at a superficial level. Even in the latter case, the actual causes and effects could be solely the force used or some other factors rather than the psychological techniques per se. Influence Operations attempt to win the hearts and minds of the target audience but, even if successful, the lasting effects of a campaign are problematic. It is further complicated because if a person has a particular view, it does not mean that the ensuing behaviours will reflect that view. Also, there is evidence that the use of force on one set of people produces attitudes and behaviours that instigate radical beliefs and behaviours in another set. So psychological warfare techniques on one group that may or may not produce compliant behaviour stimulates another group to empathise with the victims thus producing an overall practical negative influence. Influence campaigns cannot be separated from the physical environment in which they are executed. If good politics requires good influence campaigns then good influence campaigns require good politics to back them up. This paper will examine the relationships between short term influence campaigns and compare them with the more long term socialising effects such as early education, family and physical attributes that have on attitudes and beliefs which result in the development of such behaviours as terrorism.
Conference program and abstracts : http://academic-conferences.org/pdfs/ECIW_2010-Booklet.pdf
Field of Research
080303 Computer System Security
Socio Economic Objective
970108 Expanding Knowledge in the Information and Computing Sciences