I am being supervised by Professor David Stevenson. I completed my MA at Birmingham after retiring, having worked as a researcher for the BBC, consultant in software development and testing to Logica, Eurofighter, British Aerospace, the Russian Government, Reuters, DFID, Volvo, Natwest, BUPA and the NHS.
Provisional thesis title
The evolution of battle planning by the British Army on the Western Front 1914-1918
Much attention has been paid to war planning before WW-I but no systematic analysis of battle plans and their evolution in the BEF has ever been made. Descriptions have generally focussed on single battles and have not attempted to compare their planning or plans. The thesis will look at several key battles, the problems they addressed and will create a framework by which the tactical and operational knowledge they contained can be represented. Using this, the thesis will compare and contrast their plans and the processes by which the plans were prepared, reviewed and disseminated. It will answer a number of questions concerning battle planning: principally to what extent the apparent improvement in speed with which battles were planned in the “100 days” were in any way due to better plans or planning, how did the state of the state of tactical and operational knowledge evolve, to what extent was this evolution represented in doctrine documents and how well was it diffused?