#113 Jeff Engstrom on Chinese Systems Warfare

#113 Jeff Engstrom on Chinese Systems Warfare

The Cognitive Crucible is a forum that presents different perspectives and emerging thought leadership related to the information environment. The opinions expressed by guests are their own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of or endorsement by the Information Professionals Association.

During this episode, Jeff Engstrom discusses in detail how the Chinese People’s Liberation Army seeks to wage modern warfare. China favors a system of systems approach to warfare. They recognize that war is no longer a contest between particular units, arms, services, or even specific weapons platforms of competing adversaries, but rather a contest among numerous adversarial operational systems. Systems confrontation is waged not only in the traditional physical domains of land, sea, and air, but also in outer space, nonphysical cyberspace, electromagnetic, and even psychological domains.

Research Question: Jeff believes that students should help assess the  lessons which the PLA is learning from Ukraine and elsewhere, and how these lessons are shaping China’s understanding of systems and systems warfare.


Link to full show notes and resources

Guest Bio

Jeffrey Engstrom is a senior political scientist at the RAND Corporation. His research focuses on Asia-Pacific security and foreign policy issues; China’s warfighting concepts and capabilities; coercion theory and use of coercive military force; and military intervention and security cooperation.

Before joining RAND, Engstrom was a defense policy analyst at Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) in McLean, Virginia, where, in addition to researching East Asian military capabilities, he also developed expertise in war gaming. Prior to his work at SAIC, Engstrom served as a Peace Corps Volunteer.

Engstrom received his B.A. in political science and international studies from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a M.P.P. from the University of Chicago, and a Ph.D. in public policy from George Mason University.

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