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(402-6) Predictive Analysis – LAMP

In Predictive analysis of piracy activities near Somalia, Troy Lewis predicts the future impact of piracy on the states of Somalia.[1] His predictive issue was the impact of piracy on the state of Somalia, to the events involving other countries in the region. He narrows down to four actors. They include the International Community, United States, Somalia Transition Government (TFG) and Somalia’s Semiautonomous zone governments. Piracy in Somalia affects all countries whose shipments sail through the Gulf of Aden. This issue, therefore, involves too many actors, which is not advisable in the application of LAMP. This resulted to him having 5,778 pair wise comparisons.

The third step of LAMP involves an in-depth study of how each actor perceives the issue in question. It requires an extensive literature review and fieldwork. In his analysis, Troy has not made any citation of literature on how the TFG and Somalia’s Semiautonomous zone governments perceive the issue of piracy. He has also extensively included his own biased opinion regarding the issue, which is not recommendable. He identifies all possible courses of action of all the actors. This sets into motion the fifth step, determining key scenarios. He identifies two possible outcomes. These are the continuous increase in the level of piracy or significant decrease in the level of piracy.

Troy proceeds to step six and calculates 108 possible alternate futures. He uses the equation, X= (n-1) + (n-2) +…. (n-n) to arrive at 5,778 pair wise comparisons of alternate futures that must be made for each scenario. In step eight, Troy ranks the futures for each scenario, from the highest relative probability to the lowest, based on the number of votes received by each future.

He proceeds to step nine and uses the top three futures in the ranking, to analyze their consequences for both scenarios. He transposed the future, Status quo (SQ), to government collapse (CO), and moved the United States, from military interdiction with coalition (MI), to unilateral military interdiction (MU). He identified the focal events for the futures, and gave various indicators for each, to complete all the twelve steps of LAMP, to arrive at his conclusion.

Applying the LAMP analysis to the Somali pirate problem could have been accomplished more efficiently by simply including the United States with the international community, rather than as a separate actor. Similar efficiencies could have been gained by choosing a singular actor for the government of Somalia versus the two actors selected. Apart from step three, the LAMP analytic structure, as used in the article, was conceptually sound.


Troy, Lewis. “Predictive Analysis of Piracy Activities near Somalia”. New York: Master’s Thesis American Military University, 2011.

[1] Lewis Troy, “Predictive Analysis of Piracy Activities near Somalia” (New York: Master’s Thesis American Military University, 2011).

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