Kauffman Foundation News (7/12/11): Kauffman Releases Third Report in Expeditionary Economics Research Series

Kauffman Foundation Expeditionary Economics Paper Recommends New Military Government School to Train Nation-Building Experts
Combined military, university program would prepare government employees to help post-conflict economies, governments succeed.

The United States should establish a new school of military government focused on creating a scalable cadre of nation-building experts, according to the new paper “Revisiting a School of Military Government,” the third paper in the Kauffman Foundation’s Expeditionary Economics Research Series, to reconsider the United States’ approach to military and civilian development in areas stricken by conflict and natural disasters.

Such a new school would be based on the model of the WWII-era School of Military Government (SOMG) and its Civil Affairs Training Program, established by the U.S. Army in 1942, which proved highly effective in rapidly training several thousand military officers and civilian experts to support the successful transitions to civilian government in postwar Germany and Japan.

The paper points to the previous School of Military Government, which was based in Charlottesville, Va., but partnered with several universities including Harvard, Stanford, and the University of Chicago, to offer Civil Affairs Training Schools (CATS) as the demand for civil affairs experts grew rapidly during WWII. Curricula among the schools varied, with SOMG graduates focused on higher-level military strategy and CATS graduates focused on local/regional efforts; the system’s flexibility allowed the United States to quickly ramp up its training efforts as more personnel were needed. A new such program, as described in the paper, would provide rigorous training in areas such as rule of law, economic stability, governance, public health and welfare, infrastructure, and public education and information.

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