Neither a Conscript Army nor an All-Volunteer Force: Emerging Recruiting Models

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


This article develops an analytical model of force composition that combines the advantages of conscription with those of an all-volunteer force. Using Israel as a hypothesis-generating case study, it argues that mandatory military service has undergone changes centered on five key organizing principles: selective conscription, early discharges, elongated lengths of service, forms of voluntary service and differing pay-scales, and other material and non-material incentives for conscripts. These principles are “grafted” onto conscription creating a hybrid, “volunteer-ized” model. The utility of the theoretical model lies in explaining how these principles facilitate mobilizing a needed number or recruits, providing an adequate level of military expertise, as well as maintaining the legitimacy of the armed forces by meeting domestic social, economic, and political expectations about its composition and the use of personnel at its disposal. The system is adaptive and flexible, as shown through the comparisons throughout the paper.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-159
Number of pages22
JournalArmed Forces and Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2021.


  • Baltic states
  • Israel
  • Scandinavia
  • all-volunteer forces
  • conscription
  • grafting
  • recruiting models


Dive into the research topics of 'Neither a Conscript Army nor an All-Volunteer Force: Emerging Recruiting Models'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this