Enhancing the effectiveness of private military contractors

  • Jeffrey Decker

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


This thesis critiques the historical and modern relationship between war, military contracting, and military effectiveness. Its central aim is to review and add to the theory and practice of the relationship between military contracting and military effectiveness. Specifically, it questions the “bigger is better” dictum that currently informs military contracting policy by constructing and testing a competing perspective: contractor force employment (CFE). To facilitate, and to ensure the outcomes have policy relevance, the thesis evaluates contractor manpower and contractor force employment perspectives by analyzing quantitative and qualitative data relating to military contracting in Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). It argues that military contracting effectiveness can be better understood through a combination of material terms as well as non-material terms. This approach is original - a new way of thinking about the historical and modern prevalence and utility of military contracting. A second purpose of the thesis is to demonstrate that military contracting policy rests on weak foundations because it insists that military contracting enhances military effectiveness though the provision of manpower.
Date of Award13 May 2015
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorStuart Murray (Supervisor)

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