Life Cycle Analysis Procedures and Techniques

An Appraisal and Suggestions for Future Research

by Kenneth E. Marks, H. G. Massey

Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback30 pages $20.00 $16.00 20% Web Discount

RAND has examined the procedures used to conduct life cycle analyses and estimating techniques that are often the basis for life cycle cost estimates. This study was directed at identifying shortcomings that limit the usefulness of results to decisionmakers faced with investment decisions. The procedures followed in a number of recent analyses on Air Force programs were examined as case studies. A number of procedural problems were identified that could make a cost estimate an unreliable basis for an investment decision. A review of a number of well-known models often used in life cycle analysis led to the conclusion that standard or generalized models are largely insensitive to many potentially important, real-world cost drivers. The models can be improved; but, particularly in the immediate future, sound cost estimates must rely on improved analytical procedures.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation 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.

The RAND Corporation 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.