Suspended draft: effects on the composition and quality of the military workforce in the German Armed Forces
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In 2011, the German Armed Forces became an All-Volunteer Force for the first time since 1955. Less than one year after first proposed, the end to mandatory conscription became official, giving insufficient time to consider the consequences that such a drastic change in military manning methods might have on the overall effectiveness of German National Security. To date, five years later, little research exists regarding what effects the switch has had on quality of the recruit population. The thesis first considers global reasoning regarding ending conscription, especially that technological innovations in modern warfare have forever altered how we fight. Then it examines specific results of ending conscription in other countries, namely the United States. It carefully analyzes data from the German General Social Survey (GGSS) and German Micro Census to estimate difference-in-differences effects of AVF introduction on the quality and quantity of recruits as well as on the overall perception of the importance of national security among the German population. The thesis finds that, while the educational level of recruits increased, the perceived importance of national security dropped. The author recommends further data analysis as well as an information campaign, both of which would better ensure-- nationally and globally--the effectiveness and strength of German National Security.
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