Strategic Analytics

Strategic Analytics

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Points of Contact

Lead: Dr. Greg H. Parlier (gparlier@knology.net)
Co-Lead: Mr. Carl J. (CJ) Unis (cjunis1@comcast.net)
Co-Lead: Mr. David Azari (dazari@uwalumni.com)

Overview

Purpose:

The purpose for the Strategic Analytics (SA) CoP is three-fold: (1) to promote and further refine the "strategic analytics" framework as a problem- solving philosophy linking the ends-ways-means strategy paradigm with OR, data analytics, and management innovation; (2) to extend and further refine foundational building blocks, disciplines, and components that enable the SA methodology, including engineering systems, enterprise management, dynamic strategic planning, and especially engines for innovation, and; (3) to demonstrate applications of SA across a wide range of national defense and international security challenges.

Objectives:

  1. Provide a professional forum for knowledge dissemination and collaboration
  2. Incorporate SA for decision support across the Services and OSD
  3. Expand and extend SA to broader national security challenges beyond DoD
  4. Develop a cadre of MORS SMEs with expertise in systems thinking and the application of SA
  5. Support creation of a new MORSS WG and potential expansion of additional WGs under an SA CG
  6. Support the design and implementation of professional development programs including workshops and certificate producing courses
  7. Encourage the adoption of dynamic strategic planning, flexibility, and "real options" to create resilient defense enterprise systems
  8. Accelerate defense innovation by integrating emerging technologies into combat systems, operational concepts, and defense strategies

Background

Although scientific advancements continue to amaze us, we must better understand how technology, management, and policy interact in our complex socio-technical enterprise systems. Management innovation often lags technology advances, yet is essential to fully capitalize on rapidly growing big data opportunities. A "Strategic Analytics" framework aligns the "ends-ways- means" strategy paradigm with corresponding prescriptive, predictive, and descriptive analytics domains, focusing on the ultimate purpose for which an organization exists. Descriptive analyses segment problems, diagnose structural disorders, and identify enabling remedies and potential "catalysts for innovation" ("means"). Next, a system-wide integrating perspective - synthesis - addresses the attainment of enterprise goals and objectives (desired "ends") using prescriptive analytics. Finally, the design and evaluation phase provides comprehensive roadmaps using predictive analytics to create "analytical architectures" ("ways") to guide transformation. Successfully integrating emerging technologies into weapon systems, operational concepts, and strategic plans is a central challenge confronting military innovation. 

Today, as with the example of radar in the formative era of OR early during World War II, we are confronted with comparable challenges to integrate emerging technologies into combat platforms, systems, and strategies: robotics and autonomous systems; artificial intelligence and machine learning; micro- electro-mechanical systems and nanotechnology; hypersonics and directed energy. How, then, can innovation be better understood and accelerated in a controlled way to minimize the debilitating effects of disruption in non-intrusive ways to overcome the inevitable risk aversion that afflicts bureaucracies? And, just as nanotechnology is increasing our understanding of very small-scale structures, the evolving discipline of Engineering Systems is expanding our macroscopic understanding of very large-scale enterprise systems defined by their technical, managerial, and social complexity. 

Engineering Systems represents the next epoch of scientific innovation beyond inventions and complex systems. This new and evolving approach represents a paradigm shift in systems design by moving from the traditional focus on fixed specifications toward the active management of uncertainty in the implementation of socio-technical systems. However, inertia remains a powerful force within bureaucratic organizations. Consequently, sources to enable and encourage innovation must be created for the culture to embrace. 

An "Engine for Innovation" (EfI), or virtual test bed, is needed to provide a synthetic, non-intrusive environment for experimentation and evaluation of creative ideas and concepts. This synthetic environment, or micro- world, transforms theoretical knowledge into practical applications by catalyzing innovation often found at the seams between disciplines, technologies, and institutions while minimizing the debilitating effects of disruption. They provide sources for innovation, focus what otherwise would be disparate initiatives and fragmented research efforts, and expand organizational capacity for both technological and social ingenuity. Ultimately, Strategic Analytics combines our intellectual capacities, strategic planning acumen, diverse analytical capabilities, and brings them all to bear on the formidable national and international security challenges that confront us. 

Meeting Details:

The Readiness CoP will hold regular meetings that are a mix between informational presentations and collaborative workshops, emphasizing the latter, to produce valuable products. This CoP aims to:

  • Preserve lessons learned from past generations of readiness-related analyses
  • Baseline the current state of the discipline
  • Offer education on readiness-related analysis
  • Identify the challenges faced by the community
  • Advance the state-of-the-art by collectively addressing these challenges

Examples of readiness-related topics for deeper discussion by the Readiness CoP include, but are not limited to:

1- Force Generation Readiness
  • Unit readiness
  • Joint readiness
  • Readiness consumption and expenditure
2- Sustainment Readiness
  • Logistics and materiel readiness
  • Infrastructure and installations support
  • Defense Industrial Base (DIB) readiness
3- Data, Cyber, and Information Technology readiness
  • Data science, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to support decision-making
  • Hardware, networking, and IT infrastructure readiness
  • Cybersecurity and offensive cyber readiness
4- Modernization and Impacts to Future Readiness

Connecting and Contributing to the CoP:

Ms. Liz Marriott
Director, Professional Development
liz.marriott@mors.org
703-933-9071

Strategic Analytics Library