Choosing Force Structures
Modeling Interactions Among Wartime Requirements, Peacetime Basing Options, and Manpower and Personnel Policies
The U.S. military must design force structures today in the face of substantial uncertainties about future military contingencies: Where will military needs arise? What operational and support units will be needed? Options for organizing, equipping, and training units during peacetime include using concepts of tiered readiness, larger versus smaller units, or active- versus reserve-component units — which have different operating costs and use different manpower configuration. The people who staff such units and centralized support organizations include military and civilian personnel in numerous specialties and grades. This paper describes and illustrates an optimization framework that identifies a mix of units of different types, plus a mix of personnel that is practical and that can fill objectives during peacetime and contingencies, in a timely manner. Covering the whole Air Force, the optimization will permit planners to quickly evaluate the implications of such diverse options as (1) deploying forces on altered schedules, (2) stationing fewer forces overseas in peacetime, (3) staffing units in peacetime or during contingencies at different levels, (4) changing training regimens to lower some units' operating costs, (5) altering personnel behavior through incentives, or (6) opening to civilians more jobs that traditionally have been reserved for military personnel.