"...Western military ambitions seem to be gravitating towards the idea of integration, reflected in concepts and doctrines such as integrated campaigning (U.S. Department of Defense, 2018), Integrated Operating Concept (UK Ministry of Defence, 2021) and multi-domain integration (Black et al., 2022)." (from the introduction)
Western military policy-formation and doctrine seems to be gravitating towards the idea of integration, reflected in concepts such as integrated campaigning, Integrated Operating Concept, and Multi-Domain Integration – among others. Despite the increasing use of the term within military doctrines and concept papers, there is little scholarly writing on what “integration” actually means. This study contributes to the small but growing body of research on joint operations with a novel analysis on how the term “integration,” and its sister term “interoperability,” are used within academic and military discourses. The results show that the terms are given different meanings both across and within discourses. It can be deduced that “integration” is generally understood as the merging of domains and services towards joint goals while “interoperability” is often presented as the ability to combine systems, forces, and planning across services. These findings are used to create a conceptual model which distinguishes between operability, interoperability, and integration as preconditions for the conduct of joint operations. The model is in turn useful for both scholars and practitioners when discussing or assessing capabilities to perform joint operations.