Comprehensive Approach in British stabilisation operations


  • Angelica Olsson
  • Cecilia Hull Wiklund

Publish date: 2011-09-02

Report number: FOI-R--3239--SE

Pages: 59

Written in: Swedish


  • United Kingdom
  • Comprehensive Approach
  • Whole-of-Government Approach
  • Stabilisation Operations


The UK is widely regarded as one of the countries in which the Comprehensive Approach-concept has been the most thoroughly implemented at governmental level. This report maps the development of the Comprehensive Approach within the UK since 2001, in particular in relation to British stabilisation operations, and explores the effect of this development on British ability to conduct multifunctional operations. The report presents changes made at the interdepartmental level of government, the establishment of new functions such as the Stabilisation Unit and the Military Stabilisation Support Group, and the structural changes made to the British operation in Helmand, Afghanistan. The report assesses that the development of the Comprehensive Approach in the UK has strengthened British ability to carry out multifunctional operations and has resulted in significant improvements throughout the entire command and control process - from analysis and planning to execution and monitoring and evaluation - even though this is still a work in progress. Several lessons can be made related to how to promote the development of a Comprehensive Approach by studying the UK experience. This report is intended to contribute to such learning.