This module will provide the necessary skills and knowledge that enable professionals working in critical cyber contexts to adapt to continual change. It focuses on investigative methods, systems thinking and anticipating futures with a view to problem solving in a real-world context.

This Module is only offered as part of the Cyber Defence and Information Assurance MSc and the Cyberspace Operations MSc.

Due to the nature of the subject matter in this Module, security clearance may be required. 

What you will learn


  • critically evaluate a range of approaches to understanding complex security environments,
  • critically assess approaches to innovation in contested and competitive problem spaces,
  • appraise the techniques that can be used to design investigation, problem formulation and structuring, and interpretation of data.


  • design methods to investigate problems in security and defence operational contexts,
  • conduct techniques for anticipating futures such as horizon scanning and scenario based planning of technology and threats,
  • analyse and scope a complex security problem-space with a view to action and improvement.

Core content

Module topics:

  • adapting to change in complex cyber environments,
  • representing and navigating complexity,
  • soft systems methodology,
  • organisational dynamics and change,
  • monitoring and adapting,
  • anticipating future requirements,
  • dealing with disruptive and novel technologies, events and emergent changes.


Location and travel

Cranfield Defence and Security (CDS) is a Cranfield School based at the Ministry of Defence establishment on the Oxfordshire/Wiltshire borders.

Shrivenham itself lies in the picturesque Vale of the White Horse, close to the M4 motorway which links London and South Wales. It is 7 miles from Swindon, the nearest town, which lies off the M4 at the hub of Britain’s motorway network.

Bath, Cheltenham, Bristol and Oxford are all within an hour’s drive and London less than two hours away by car.

All visitors must be pre-booked in at reception by the person they are visiting on the campus.

For further location and travel details

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.