Abstract : An analysis of the United States Military is conducted by examining the institution and the organizational structure through the conceptual framework of two models. In the first part of the study it is suggested that the United States Military is moving from a total institution model to a more civilianized employer-employee model. The emergence of the new model may be viewed as a precursor to unionization of the Armed Forces. The organization is also examined in the light of J.D. Thompson's organizational model which is essentially a synthesis of open and closed-system theory. Organizational health is maintained by protecting the inner core from the environment. This function is performed by peripheral support agencies which act as buffers between the core and the environment. The model suggests that a functional bifurcation between the core and support units should be formalized. A distribution of the various services between the core and support is presented. Corollaries of the models may have an impact on current issues. In the last section of the study two of the current issues are addressed; unionization and the expanding role of women. The author suggests that union activities be restricted to support units. Furthermore, there are indications that diminishing human resources will necessitate the use of women in combat units. (Author)

This paper was written in 1978 while the author was a student at the Naval War College.

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