Command and Control Doctrinal Challenges in the British Army, with Professor Gary Sheffield

Command and Control Doctrinal Challenges in the British Army: From the Trenches to the War on Terror

  • WITH: Professor Gary Sheffield, University of Wolverhampton
  • WHEN: Friday, Sept. 21, 2018 | Noon – 1:30 p.m.
  • WHERE: Eggers 151 (History Department Conference Room)

World War I saw the greatest challenge to military command and control the world had ever seen. A combination of factors produced a “wicked” problem that profoundly changed land warfare. There were no easy solutions, and generals in all armies struggled to adjust. In this lecture, Professor Gary Sheffield looks at the British army’s experience, examining topics such as command philosophies, doctrine, communications and coalition warfare, and gives brief case studies of command at Gallipoli in 1915 and Douglas Haig as Commander-in-Chief of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) on the Western Front. He then looks at the same army from the Falklands War in 1982 to the present day, using the BEF’s experience to shed light on another period of dramatic transformation in C2.

Gary Sheffield is Professor of War Studies at the University of Wolverhampton. He works primarily on the armies of Britain and the Empire in the era of the two World Wars, 1914 to 1945. His publications include Douglas Haig: From the Somme to Victory (2016) and Forgotten Victory—The First World War: Myths and Realities (2001). Sheffield has previously held Chairs at King’s College London, where he was Land Warfare Historian on the Higher Command and Staff Course at the Joint Services Command and Staff ­College, and the University of Birmingham. He began his academic career at the Department of War Studies, Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst.

 Co-sponsors: Department of History & INSCT