Improving the Analytic Contribution of Advanced Warfighting Experiments

by Thomas W. Lucas, Steven C. Bankes, Patrick Vye

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Advanced Warfighting Experiments (AWEs) are central to the Army’s efforts to support the development of Force XXI. Using combinations of live, virtual, and constructive simulations, AWEs are expected to inform the design, structure, and use of the future forces. This briefing discusses several ideas and methods that can help in getting more analytic benefit from the AWE process. Specifically, the “credible uses” methodology — developed at RAND — is applied in an example taken from the context of the Focused Dispatch AWE. This methodology provides an explicit link between decisions the analysis is intended to support and specific constructive, virtual, and/or live experiments. This methodology places strong requirements on the design of the experiments that comprise an AWE. The authors illustrate how this requirement can be met by adapting ideas drawn from the statistical literature on designing experiments and combining them with a modeling technique being developed at RAND called Exploratory Modeling. This approach will require changes to the process of conducting AWEs.

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