Information Joint Function

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The elevation of information as a joint function impacts all operations and signals a fundamental appreciation for the military role of information at the strategic, operational, and tactical levels within today’s complex OE.

A joint function is a grouping of capabilities and activities that enable JFCs to synchronize, integrate, and direct joint operations. A number of subordinate tasks, missions, and related capabilities help define each function, and some tasks and systems could apply to more than one function. There are seven joint functions common to joint operations: C2, information, intelligence, fires, movement and maneuver, protection, and sustainment. Commanders leverage the capabilities of multiple joint functions during operations. The joint functions apply to all joint operations across the competition continuum and enable both traditional warfare and IW, but to different degrees, conditions, and standards, while employing different tactics, techniques, and procedures.

See related article on leveraging information.

The information function encompasses the management and application of information to support achievement of objectives; it is the deliberate integration with other joint functions to change or maintain perceptions, attitudes, and other elements that drive desired relevant actor behaviors; and to support human and automated decision making. The information function helps commanders and staffs understand and leverage the prevalent nature of information, its military uses, and its application during all military operations. This function provides JFCs the ability to preserve friendly information and leverage information and the inherent informational aspects of military activities to achieve the commander’s objectives. The information joint function provides an intellectual framework to aid commanders in exerting one’s influence through the timely generation, preservation, denial, or projection of information.

All military activities have an informational aspect since most military activities are observable in the Information Environment (IE). Informational aspects are the features and details of military activities observers interpret and use to assign meaning and gain understanding. Those aspects affect the perceptions and attitudes that drive behavior and decision making. The JFC leverages informational aspects of military activities to gain an advantage in the OE; failing to leverage those aspects in a timely manner may cede this advantage to an adversary or enemy. Leveraging the informational aspects of military activities can support achieving operational and strategic objectives. The information function also encompasses the use of friendly information to influence foreign audiences and affect the legitimacy, credibility, and influence of the USG, joint force, allies, and partners. Additionally, JFCs use friendly information to counter, discredit, and render irrelevant the disinformation, misinformation, and propaganda of other actors.

The information joint function helps commanders and their staffs understand and leverage the pervasive nature of information, its military uses, and its application across the competition continuum, to include its role in supporting human and automated decision making. Information planners should consider coordination activities not only within the information joint function but also among all other joint functions. The information joint function organizes the tasks required to manage and apply information during all activities and operations.

INFO2 SMARTbook: Information Advantage (Activities, Tasks & Capabilities)This article is an extract from "INFO2 SMARTbook: Information Advantage (Activities, Tasks & Capabilities)" by The Lightning Press. Download a free PDF sample and learn more at:  INFO2 SMARTbook: Information Advantage (Activities, Tasks & Capabilities).

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