Design: an Ethical and Moral Project. Conscious Intention for the Cybernetician


  • Francis Clermont Royal Military College St-Jean


Military literature pertaining to systems thinking and design has not yet addressed issues of ethics and moral. Fundamental in the realm of war, violence and human suffering, this article addresses these epistemological and ontological issues that have been so far ignored. Transdisciplinary in nature, the paper proposes different concepts and approaches to capture and assess the profound meanings and impact critical thinking, design, and action have in the strategic spheres of political systems, and with them military organizations. As demonstrated throughout this paper, the values and principles upon which the system must be founded should also guide the actors in their desire to deconstruct in order to reconstruct, transform, and improve the system through a process of enhanced reflexivity and perception that develops conscious, autonomous, responsible, ethical, and moral actors.

Author Biography

Francis Clermont, Royal Military College St-Jean

Francis Clermont has been teaching at the Royal Military College St-Jean since 2006. Francis does research on development of the cognitive and intellectual skills and competencies of soldiers. As a result of his research, Francis realised and produced a film-documentary in 2011 titled “The Art of Being a Soldier-Diplomat. The Experience of Canadian NCMs in Cyprus”. In 2015 he published a scientific article titled “The Art of Being a Soldier-Diplomat. From an Implicit Role to an Explicit Function”. Throughout the years he has also given conferences on this topic. Francis is also interested in systems philosophy and design, a topic he has had the opportunity to teach to high ranking senior NCMs of the Canadian Armed Forces. In August 2015, he was invited to join the Directorate of Military Training and Cooperation team of instructors for international military seminars in ethics. Among other contributions in these missions, Francis put together a lecture on systems thinking and second-order cybernetics.


Francis obtained a bachelor’s degree in History and Political Science from l’Université de Montréal in 1999. After having traveled in Europe, Africa and in the Middle-East in 2000-2001, Francis obtained a master’s degree in 2003 from l’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) in Political Science, with a specialization in International Law and International Relations. During his graduate studies, Francis also did research and taught, and was involved in the academic and institutional development of the Political Science and Law Faculty of the university. Before joining the Department of National Defence, Francis practiced communication and journalism. Amongst his experience in this field, he worked in Morocco as journalist, reporter and investigator for a French weekly newspaper. He has also worked as journalist, show host and chronicler in Montreal radio stations