Cover: Testing the Effects of Confidence- and Security-Building Measures in a Crisis

Testing the Effects of Confidence- and Security-Building Measures in a Crisis

Two Political-Military Games

Published 1987

by James P. Kahan, Marilee Lawrence, Richard E. Darilek, William M. Jones, Alan Platt, Philip J. Romero, William Schwabe, David A. Shlapak


Download eBook for Free

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 3.4 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.


Purchase Print Copy

 Format Price
Add to Cart Paperback74 pages $25.00

This report presents the results of two political-military games played at RAND in the spring of 1986 to investigate how possible European confidence- and security-building measures (CSBMs) might affect interaction between the United States and the Soviet Union in a crisis situation. The objective was to examine which of three hypotheses best describes the most likely effects of CSBMs in a crisis: (1) CSBMs can help make crucial distinctions/decisions; (2) CSBMs neither help nor harm decisionmaking; and (3) CSBMs can cause more harm than good. The games provided no evidence that CSBMs could reduce the risks of miscalculation or misunderstanding. However, neither did the CSBMs appear to exacerbate misunderstandings. The players tended to focus on their own beliefs and to ignore evidence bearing on the intentions of the other side. The study indicates a need for further research on such important issues as the interplay between intimidation and surprise.

This report is part of the RAND report series. The report was a product of RAND from 1948 to 1993 that represented the principal publication documenting and transmitting RAND's major research findings and final research.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.