Sunday, August 10, 2008

Autonomy of command at sea

"The captain, thus, is the sole word of authority aboard the ship, and every decision rests squarely on his shoulders. Even after electronics created the ability to "talk to the boss" around the clock, anywhere in the world, the habit of autonomous operations continues to reside in the naval forces. "Command by Negation," a concept unique to naval command and control, allows a subordinate commander the freedom to operate as he or she sees best, keeping authorities informed of decisions taken, until the senior overrides a decision. The Navy is the only service that uses the acronym UNODIR (UNless Otherwise DIRected) by which a commanding officer informs the boss of a proposed course of action, and only if the boss overrides it, will it not be taken. The subordinate is informing the boss, not asking permission."


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