Analytic Gaming

  • Report

    Next-Generation Wargaming for the U.S. Marine Corps: Recommended Courses of Action

    The authors evaluate wargaming tools as the U.S. Marine Corps invests in its next-generation wargaming concept. The authors describe wargaming processes, facilities, and skill sets and recommend courses of action.

    Oct 16, 2019

  • Becca Wasser with her RAND colleagues, during a wargame they designed for teen girls and young women, photo by Dori Walker/RAND Corporation

    Commentary

    I Run Wargames. Too Often, I Am the Only Woman in the Room

    Wargaming has long been a male domain and has significant barriers to entry, retention, and advancement. You can't learn by reading; you have to learn by doing. Failing to include women in all wargaming roles risks missing out on innovative strategies.

    Sep 26, 2019

  • Riflemen compete in the Lithuanian Best Infantry Squad Competition at Rukla Training Area, Lithuania, August 24, 2017, photo by Lithuanian Land Forces

    Research Brief

    Why Understanding 'Will to Fight' Is Crucial

    Arguably, will to fight is the most important factor in war. The best technology in the world is useless without the force of will to use it and to keep using it even as casualties mount and unexpected calamities arise. Ignoring will to fight can contribute to tactical or even strategic defeat.

    Sep 13, 2019

  • Report

    Force Planning Scenarios, 1945–2016: Their Origins and Use in Defense Strategic Planning

    This report presents a historical review of defense strategic planning, with a focus on the factors that have shaped defense planning scenarios and strategic analysis in the Department of Defense in an aim to improve scenario use in defense planning.

    Sep 5, 2019

  • Periodical

    RAND Review: September-October 2019

    This issue spotlights a wargame designed for young women interested in national security; ethics in scientific research, particularly in areas such as artificial intelligence and machine learning; and community citizen science.

    Aug 26, 2019

  • Making a move during a unique wargame hosted by RAND with a group called Girl Security, photo by Dori Gordon Walker/RAND Corporation

    Essay

    A Wargame at RAND Puts Teen Girls in Command

    RAND analysts developed and hosted a wargame to help young women learn firsthand about national security. It's a lesson in strategy, in the hard realities behind news headlines, but also in agility and resilience. In that, it's not so far removed from the daily life of a teenage girl.

    Aug 20, 2019

  • A helicopter lands during the trident juncture exercise in the Netherlands

    Report

    NATO's Amphibious Forces: Command and Control of a Multibrigade Alliance Task Force

    RAND researchers facilitated three wargaming events to explore command and control of NATO's amphibious forces in major combat operations. The authors note results and implications for future force development.

    Jun 27, 2019

  • Report

    OCEANS 17 Tabletop Exercise: Findings and Recommendations

    In December 2017, the RAND Corporation conducted a tabletop exercise on air operations across the boundaries between geographic combatant commands. This report describes the exercise's design, key insights from our analysis, and recommendations.

    May 9, 2019

  • Report

    Do Differing Analyses Change the Decision? Using a Game to Assess Whether Differing Analytic Approaches Improve Decisionmaking

    In this report, RAND researchers use a structured comparison game to examine the value proposition of different analytic inputs (scenario-based versus Robust Decision Making) on a sample U.S. Department of Defense decision about force structure.

    Apr 8, 2019

  • Report

    Conceptual Design for a Multiplayer Security Force Assistance Strategy Game

    The authors explain the conceptual underpinnings and basic rules for a RAND-designed security force assistance strategy game. The game is a tool to explore the potential benefits and risks of different security force assistance strategies.

    Feb 7, 2019

  • Binoculars on a map, photo by Angel_a/Getty Images

    Report

    The U.S. Department of Defense's Planning Process: Components and Challenges

    This report explores the current defense planning process used by the U.S. Department of Defense, with a focus on how scenarios are developed and employed to support defense planning.

    Feb 4, 2019

  • L-R: Caroline Baxter, Cherie Emerson, Melissa Rowe, Elizabeth Bodine-Baron, Christine Wormuth, Kimberly Kagan, Cortney Weinbaum, Stacie Pettyjohn at the Roberta Wohlstetter Forum on National Security in Arlington, Virginia, October 24, 2018

    Blog

    RAND Hosts Forum on 21st-Century Warfare Honoring Roberta Wohlstetter

    National security experts, flag officers, and decisionmakers attended the Roberta Wohlstetter Forum on National Security at RAND's Washington office on October 24. The featured speakers, moderators, organizers, donor, and namesake for the event were all women.

    Nov 26, 2018

  • Wargaming at the U.S. Army Command and Staff College on Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, March 9, 2018

    Commentary

    Building a Pipeline of Wargaming Talent: A Two-Track Solution

    How does the Department of Defense imagine the future of war and make long-term investments to confront the challenges ahead? On issues ranging from potential conflicts with Russia to the future of transportation and logistics, senior leaders have increasingly turned to wargames to imagine potential futures.

    Nov 15, 2018

  • Report

    Realigning the Stars: A Methodology for Reviewing Active Component General and Flag Officer Requirements

    The authors developed and employed a methodology to review general and flag officer requirements in the U.S. military, used results to identify opportunities to eliminate or downgrade positions, and explored the implications of reductions.

    Oct 22, 2018

  • A participant votes for the team he thinks should win RAND's education policy game, Let's Improve Tanner High School!, in Pittsburgh, September 28, 2018

    Blog

    Education Policy 'Game Night' Debuts at RAND

    Parents, teachers, principals, and community leaders played RAND's first education policy game. Participants had to work through scenarios affecting a fictional high school, such as how to cut its budget by 4 percent. The game showed researchers how different stakeholders might approach school improvement challenges and what drives their decisions.

    Oct 11, 2018

  • Naval Postgraduate School students participate in analytic wargames they designed to explore solutions for some of DoD's most pressing national security concerns

    Commentary

    Just Let Them Compete: Raising the Next Generation of Wargamers

    Wargames are games that simulate aspects of warfare at varying levels, aimed at analyzing human decisionmaking. To develop the next generation of avid wargamers, the first step is both radical and simple: Let them compete.

    Oct 9, 2018

  • Ferrying South Vietnamese rangers, U.S. helicopters swoop in on a landing zone on the fringe of a pineapple plantation in the Mekong Delta on August 21, 1967

    Report

    Assessing Will to Fight at the Military Unit Level

    Will to fight is vital to understanding war, but it is often ignored or misunderstood. A model of unit will to fight that can be applied to ground combat units of any scale can help U.S. military leaders better assess partner and adversary forces and incorporate will to fight in their planning.

    Sep 20, 2018

  • Landing ships putting cargo ashore on Omaha Beach, mid-June, 1944

    Report

    What Shapes a Nation's Will to Fight?

    When considering threats from Russia and North Korea, it is natural to focus on military capabilities. But incorporating will to fight into the analysis of actual or potential conflicts will enhance strategic planning. A model that can be tailored and applied to various conflict scenarios can help U.S. leaders better understand and influence will to fight.

    Sep 20, 2018

  • Soldiers receive a safety and mission brief before a training exercise at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., June 18, 2018

    Report

    Improving U.S. Force Development

    The U.S. armed forces are larger than needed to fight a single major war. But at the same time, the military is failing to keep pace with adversaries and is poorly postured to meet key challenges in Europe and East Asia. How can the Department of Defense respond?

    Jul 9, 2018

  • Tool

    A Wargame Method for Assessing Risk and Resilience of Military Command-and-Control Organizations

    Guide to conducting a command-and-control (C2) risk and resilience tabletop exercise, a new wargaming method of assessing metrics for C2 structures in terms of risks from adversary efforts or the operational environment and resilience to those risks.

    Jun 21, 2018