Cover: Systems Analysis and the Political Process

Systems Analysis and the Political Process

Published 1967

by James R. Schlesinger


Download eBook for Free

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 1 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.


Purchase Print Copy

 Format Price
Add to Cart Paperback34 pages $20.00

An evaluation of the role for systems analysis in a highly political environment. Four aspects are considered: (1) general limitations; (2) the relevance of the experience in the Department of Defense; (3) bureaucratic problems in a wider compass; and (4) what systems analysis can accomplish. The Department of Defense, in contrast to other components of the bureaucracy, is so structured that the introduction of systems analysis and program budgeting was relatively easy. However, in the more politicized environment of the covilian; programs, the DOD experience may prove to be a rather inexact model for what will actually take place. Nevertheless, systems analysis, in sharpening and educating the judgments and intuitions of those making decisions, will begin to reshape the way that agencies view their problems. By introducing numbers, systems analysis serves to move arguments from the level of ideology or syllogism to the level of quantitative calculation.

This report is part of the RAND paper series. The paper was a product of RAND from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.