Emerging Techniques Forum

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Emerging Techniques Forum (ETF)
Digital Reasoning

7-10 December 2020
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Mr. Dave Saranchak

Applied Research Fellow, Concurrent Technologies Corporation

Dr. David Azari PhD

Operations Research Analyst, US Army Futures Command


The Emerging Techniques Forum (ETF) is driven to improve analysis and understanding throughout the defense community by seeking out novel and leading-edge approaches, methods, and techniques - wherever they are conceived. By sharing and incorporating the latest (and in-progress) developments across government, academia, private industry, and enthusiasts, the ETF aims to support and maintain relevant, timely, and early comprehension of lessons learned that may grow to have an outsized impact on the community at large.

2020 ETF seeks advancements in tools and techniques that enable decisive action in complex environments. Our tracks explore how information aggregation, processing, and computation can improve predictions of future needs and risk assessments of complex investment and operational strategies. Many of these efforts have seen rapid maturation and evolutionary leaps in analytic capability borne from recent global crises. By applying innovative experimental designs, methodologies and cross-domain techniques to analyze data, “digital reasoning” should increase the quality, context, value, and comprehension of real-time information that’s effectively delivered to the people and places where it’s needed most.

Keynote Speaker:

Dr. Kathleen M. Carley
Dr. Kathleen M. Carley

Dr. Carley is a Professor of Computer Science in the Institute for Software Research, IEEE Fellow, and Director of the Center for Computational Analysis of Social and Organizational Systems (CASOS) and Director of the center for Informed DEmocracy And Social-cybersecurity (IDeaS) of the Center for at Carnegie Mellon University. She joined Carnegie Mellon in 1984 as Assistant Professor Sociology and Information Systems. In 1990 she became Associate Professor of Sociology and Organizations, in 1998 Professor of Sociology, Organizations, and Information Technology, and in 2002, attained her current role as Professor of Computation, Organization, and Society. She is also the CEO of Carley Technologies Inc. aka Netanomics.

Ms. Deborah C. Gordon
Deborah C. Gordon

Ms. Deborah C. Gordon is an independent consultant providing consulting services to several small technology companies. Gordon is an Advisor to Rhombus Power, Inc. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Arms Control Association, Probability Management, Inc., The Institute for Security and Technology, Council on Strategic Risks, Peninsula Volunteers, Inc., Peninsula Volunteers Properties,  and the Fort Ross Conservancy. She is an Affiliate at the Center for International Security and Cooperation at Stanford University from which she retired in August 2019 after 22 years as the Executive Director of the Preventive Defense Project. She is the former Mayor of Woodside, CA and served 17 years on the Town Council. She has also served during the last 17 years as Director, City/County Association of Governments of San Mateo County and as Chair for many San Mateo County and California State Advisory bodies. Gordon has over 30 years of experience in algorithm design, signal processing, network design, and network security and holds U.S. and Canadian patents for her work in medical instrumentation. Gordon holds a BS in computer science from the University of Southern California.

Dr. Sam L. Savage
Dr. Sam L. Savage

Dr. Sam L. Savage is Executive Director of ProbabilityManagement.org, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit devoted to making uncertainty actionable. The organization has received funding from Chevron, Lockheed Martin, General Electric, PG&E, Wells Fargo, Kaiser Permanente and others, and Harry Markowitz, Nobel Laureate in Economics was a founding board member. Dr. Savage is author of The Flaw of Averages: Why We Underestimate Risk in the Face of Uncertainty (John Wiley & Sons, 2009, 2012), is an Adjunct Professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University and a Fellow of Cambridge University's Judge Business School. He is the inventor of the Stochastic Information Packet (SIP), an auditable data array for conveying uncertainty. Dr. Savage received his Ph.D. in computational complexity from Yale University.


Call for abstracts are now being accepted for the 2020 ETF based on the topics listed below.

Track 1: Systems in Crisis

Lead: Shaun Doheney

Possible topics include:

  • Forecasting demand of human services and supplies
  • Supply chain resiliency and manufacturing agility
  • Wargaming of pandemic and social conditions
  • Human performance and human systems integration
  • Rapid shifts in production, manufacturing, or labor use
  • Cross-organization data sourcing, aggregation, and planning
  • Human, AI, and robot teaming
  • Security, privacy, and propaganda
  • Medical simulation, healthcare performance, and error analysis
  • Workforce and productivity resilience

Track 2: Prescriptive Analytics

Lead: John Bicknell

Possible topics include:

  • Spatio-temporal data mining techniques
  • Video-processing and image classification
  • Irregular event prediction and risk assessment
  • Supply chain optimization
  • Disaster preparation, humanitarian relief, and pandemic response
  • Advances in cost measurement
  • Resilience: infrastructure, network, and social connections
  • Anticipating operational impacts, quantifying mission success
  • Big data and prediction markets

Track 3: Interactive Discovery

Lead: Russell Mosier

Possible topics include:

  • Overcoming susceptibility tbias / fostering “intellectual humility”
  • Conveying uncertainty and quality
  • Interactive visualizations and trust
  • Mobile applications, Human in the (data) loop, and continuous data refinement
  • Distributed wargaming, assessment, and measuring operational effectiveness
  • Efficacy of crowdsourcing, and utility of expertise
  • Innovation and institutional inertia
  • Cognition, distributed cognition, and natural language processing
  • Assessments and continuous learning

Track 4: Classified Track

Lead: Meredith Dozier

For the classified track, we will be using the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) Defense Collaboration System (DCS) platform. Presenters and attendees will be expected to have a way to access the system - MORS will not provide such access. Additionally, participants will need to transfer clearances to ensure security protocols are met. This track will be on Thursday, December 8th.

Track 5: Visco Prize

Lead: Norm Reitter

The purpose of this prize is to promote collaboration between the international operations research community and MORS by providing a high quality presentation selected at the annual Emerging Techniques Forum (ETF) to the International Symposium on Military Operational Research (ISMOR) every year. This prize will provide a Junior Analyst the opportunity to present at the ISMOR, held in the United Kingdom every summer. The selected presenter will be provided admission to the ISMOR along with housing and travel expenses.

This prize was established in March 2019 to honor and to memorialize Gene Visco, FS, who was an ardent supporter of collaboration within the international operations research community and for years represented MORS during the ISMOR. Gene was also a constant supporter of MORS junior analysts and a champion for quality presentations.


Agenda coming soon!


Payment Options

The "Invoice Me" option can only be used for the registration fee. This option won't appear if you have social tickets, CEU courses or tutorials in your cart. If you need assistance registering please contact Ms. Tina Yan, tina.yan@mors.org.



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