National Security
Congressional Newsletter
Monthly updates to Congress on RAND's work in national security

IMPOSSIBLE CERTAINTY: COST RISK ANALYSIS FOR AIR FORCE SYSTEMS
Authors: Mark Arena, Obaid Younossi, Lionel Galway, Bernard Fox, John Graser, Jerry Sollinger, Felicia Wu, and Carolyn Wong

MG-415 Cost analysts must predict-sometimes very far-into the future how much money the military will spend on weapon systems. But these analysts do not have perfect knowledge about tomorrow's technology, economic conditions, or any other future event. This book looks at how estimates for future weapon systems can be more realistic than in the past and how cost uncertainty analyses can be more comprehensive and informative.

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SYSTEMS ENGINEERING AND PROGRAM MANAGEMENT: TRENDS AND COSTS FOR AIRCRAFT AND GUIDED WEAPONS PROGRAMS
Authors: David Stem, Michael Boito, and Obaid Younossi

MG-413 Systems engineering and program management (SE/PM) constitute a large portion of the acquisition cost of military aircraft and guided weapons systems. The goal of this study was the development of a set of cost-estimating relationships that can be used to estimate the SE/PM cost element for development and production of aircraft and weapons programs. The authors investigate trends in SE/PM costs over time to generate methods that cost analysts can use early in the life cycle of a program when little cost information is available.

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A FRAMEWORK FOR ENHANCING AIRLIFT PLANNING AND EXECUTION CAPABILITIES WITHIN THE JOINT EXPEDITIONARY MOVEMENT SYSTEM
Authors: Robert Tripp, Kristin Lynch, Charles Robert Roll, Jr., John Drew, and Patrick Mills

Airlift Planning Recent operations have shed light on shortfalls in Air Force intratheater airlift. Using an expanded strategies-to-tasks framework, the authors assess current intratheater airlift processes, organizations, doctrine, training, and systems. This report catalogues identified shortfalls and recommends options for improving the Theater Distribution System. The authors recommend separation of supply, demand, and integrator roles and adoption of a closed-loop planning and execution process.

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CHALLENGING TIME IN DOPMA: FLEXIBLE AND CONTEMPORARY MILITARY OFFICER MANAGEMENT
Authors: Peter Schirmer, Harry Thie, Margaret Harrell, and Michael Tseng

Officer management Many of the laws and policies that govern officer career management (often referred to as “DOPMA,” after the Defense Officer Personnel Management Act of 1980) may not meet the requirements of the future operating environment. One criticism of DOPMA is that it does not allow for much variety in career paths because it is time-driven. The authors demonstrate how a competency-based system could provide more flexibility in preparing officers for the wide-ranging roles and missions of the 21st century military.

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RESERVE RETIREMENT REFORM: A VIEWPOINT ON RECENT CONGRESSIONAL PROPOSALS
Authors: Beth Asch, James Hosek, and David Loughran

AccountingNumerous bills have been introduced in Congress to reduce the age at which reservists can begin to receive retirement benefits. This report provides input regarding these proposals and the broader issues surrounding reserve retirement reform. Although it is important to recognize that deferring some portion of compensation can be cost-effective, the results argue in favor of providing compensation on a current rather than a deferred basis.

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MEASURING THE STATUTORY AND REGULATORY CONSTRAINTS ON DOD ACQUISITION: RESEARCH DESIGN FOR AN EMPIRICAL STUDY
Authors: Jeffrey Drezner, Raj Raman, Irv Blickstein, John Ablard, Melissa Bradley, Brent Eastwood, Maria Falvo, Dikla Gavrieli, Monica Hertzman, Darryl Lenhardt, and Megan McKernan

Soldier and technology The Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics asked RAND to evaluate the cost of compliance with acquisition-related statutes and regulations at the program office level. This report identifies the areas considered most burdensome and describes the study’s methodology, focus, and data collection process, including the development of a Web-based data collection tool for use by program office personnel.

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HISTORICAL COST GROWTH OF COMPLETED WEAPON SYSTEM PROGRAMS
Authors: Mark Arena, Robert Leonard, Sheila Murray, and Obaid Younossi

Bomber Our analysis shows that the Department of Defense (DoD) and the military departments have generally underestimated the cost of buying new weapon systems and that this growth is higher than previously thought. It indicates a systematic bias toward underestimating costs and substantial uncertainty in estimating the final cost of a weapon system.

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TESTIMONY

ISLAM AND THE WEST: SEARCHING FOR COMMON GROUND: THE TERRORIST THREAT AND THE COUNTER-TERRORISM EFFORT
Author: Bruce Hoffman

Testimony presented to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on July 18, 2006.

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ANALYZING TERRORISM RISK
Author: Henry Willis

Written testimony submitted to the House Financial Services Committee, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, and the House Homeland Security Committee, Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing, and Terrorism Risk Assessment on July 25, 2006.

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COMMENTARY

The following is a list of national security related commentary pieces that RAND researchers have contributed to newspapers in the past month. To retrieve past commentary pieces, please visit RAND's commentary page.

BOMBING BOON…
Authors: David Aaron and Paul Miller (Washington Times)

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PROTECTING U.S. INTERESTS IN THE MIDDLE EAST
Author: Ambassador Robert Hunter (Washingtonpost.com)

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HOW TO CURB RISING SUICIDE TERRORISM IN AFGHANISTAN
Authors: Hekmat Karzai and Seth Jones (Christian Science Monitor)

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RAND CONGRESSIONAL RESOURCES STAFF

Michael Rich
Executive Vice President

Shirley Ruhe
Director, Office of Congressional Relations

Sage Newman
National Security Legislative Analyst

RAND Office of Congressional Relations
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REPRINTS: BIOMETRICS

DOD BIOMETRIC CONFORMITY ASSESSMENT INITIATIVE
Authors: John Woodward and Sam Cava

HOW DO YOU KNOW FRIEND FROM FOE? DOD'S AUTOMATED BIOMETRIC IDENTIFICATION SYSTEM
Author: John Woodward

IDENTITY PROTECTION
Author: John Woodward

BIOMETRICS: TRUST, BUT IDENTIFY
Author: John Woodward

DOD'S COLLABORATIVE APPROACH TO DEVELOPING BIOMETRICS STANDARDS
Author: John Woodward


RELATED LINKS

More Congressional Resources on National Security

National Security Research Area

RAND National Security Research Division

RAND Project AIR FORCE

RAND Army Research Division (RAND Arroyo)

RAND Congressional Web Site

RAND Web Site


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