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page reviewed/updated 19 Feb 2013

What is BIA ? ___return to top
    BIA (Behavioral Influences Analysis) is a unique, actor/group-focused, End-to-End form of human factors (or psycho-social dimensional) analysis. BIA seeks to understand past, current, and most likely future operational-level behaviors of actual or potential adversaries. Also, cells. Networks, teams, or groups, and individuals, of interest to analysis customers might include charismatic adversary leaders, decision cells; population segments of concern or special interest; or, distressed or threatened groups or population elements. BIA employs selected methods, techniques, tools, and knowledge bases of many of the social, behavioral, and cognitive sciences, of languages and linguistics, and of the liberal arts and humanities. It succeeds for the operational/warfighter customer, planner, or policy maker when its analyses and behavioral assessments offer products that answer: WHO, WHY, and HOW LIKELY with respect to a given actor, group, or threat organization, for a given or projected situation. Deep insights depend on excellent information -- most of which can be open/public sourced -- and specially trained BIA analysts. Insights can lead to actionable recommendations for influence or kinetic operations, where requested by customers.

How can human adversary behavior possibly be 'predicted' by BIA ? ___return to top

    Adversary behavior can NOT be 'predicted.' It can, however, be reasonably forecasted, or estimated, for a given situation, in terms of probabilities of occurrence of any given operational behavior of which the adversary is capable/possesses the means. This requires knowing and understanding key elements of behavior's origins, predisposition/selection processes from culture and society, imperatives within the organizational and/or institutional arena, and decision drivers in the cognitive-psychological domain. There are some powerful software and other tools to allow modeling and simulation of weighted key factors, and that provide for parametric or sensitivity analyses to be performed. This modeling, combined with human analysts adversary Behavioral Red Teaming, provides unique insights on WHO, WHY, and HOW LIKELY with respect to a given adversary, his/their motivations and needs/desires, and the means to achieve them. Results of behavioral assessments are expressed in probabilities of occurrence (of attitudes held, decisions made, and behaviors or courses of action selected). Knowing well the behavioral history, current capabilities, values, and goals of a group allows analysts to narrow the range of likely behaviors to a small cluster or a bounded solution space. This allows better policy and planning focus.

Why is BIA important to do ? ___return to top

    Knowing the adversary's physically-based and electromagnetic capabilities (weapons systems, munitions, platforms, C4, etc.) tells us what raw capabilities he possesses to apply force or violence. BIA addresses what he believes he CAN, SHOULD, or MUST do with respect to his opponents or in a given situation. This requires an understanding of his/their enduring attitudes, motivations, and decision processes, among other key factors. He may possess WMD, but conclude from his own net-assessment, that the risks of retribution outweigh any possible gains of employment. Also, even suicidal adversaries must calculate that their tactics have a good chance to succeed, and to achieve the psychological, physical, and social objectives intended. BIA attempts to develop actionable insights that allow friendly actions to be best targeted to shape or condition, in order to deter or persuade, an adversary from a particular course of action. If not deterred, then the assessments offer the best available ways to exploit adversary psychological and behavioral vulnerabilities so as to deceive, mislead, divert, or delay dangerous behaviors, or to make them ineffective.

What books do you recommend? ___return to top

    Try these for starters:
    1. Intelligence Analysis: A Target-Centric Approach, 2nd Edition. Robert M. Clark. CQ Press, 2006
    2. Know Thy Enemy II: a Look at the World's Most Threatening Terrorist Networks and Criminal Gangs, Editors: Kindt, Post, and Schneider, USAF Counterproliferation Center, 2007
    3. Know Thy Enemy: Profiles of Adversary Leaders and Their Strategic Cultures, Editors: Schneider and Post, USAF Counterproliferation Center, 2003
    4. Adversarial Reasoning: Computational Approaches to Reading the Opponent's Mind, Editors: Kott and McEneaney. Chapman and Hall/CRC, 2007.
    5. Organizational Simulation, Editors: Rouse and Boff. John Wiley and Sons, 2005
    6. Cross-Cultural Psychology: Critical Thinking and Contemporary Applications, 3rd Edition. Shiraev and Levy. Pearson/Allyn and Bacon, 2007
    7. Understanding Culture's Influence on Behavior, 2nd Edition. Richard Brislin. Wadsworth/Thomson Learning, 2000
    8. Culture and Psychology, 4th Edition. Matsumoto and Juang. Thomson/Wadsworth, 2008
    9. International Relations, 8th Edition. Goldstein and Pevehouse. Pearson/Longman, 2008
    10. Strategy for Chaos, Colin S. Gray. Frank Cass, 2002

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