2018 Analytic Support to Contingency/Named Operations and Advancing the Professionalism of Assessments

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A MORS Assessments Special Session
26 February - 2 March 2018
MacDill Air Force Base
Tampa, FL


The purpose of this mini-symposium is the advance the state of assessments—theory, doctrine and practice across the strategic, operational and tactical levels. Currently, our doctrine lacks specific guidance to assist assessment teams in building and conducting good assessments. Our community currently has no widely available education or training to proliferate and extend the experiences and best practices learned by those who have experience in the field. This mini-symposium will build on the knowledge from recent experiences across the Joint Force and the MORS Assessment workshop held in 2012. Knowledge share from this session will be used to produce a MORS handbook on assessments.

The keynote is Ben Connable, senior political scientist at the RAND Corporation and a retired Marine Corps intelligence and Middle East Foreign Area officer. To view his complete bio, click here.

The chairs for this are LTC Marvin King, TRADOC and Dr. Lynette Arnhart

The working groups are: 

  1. Assessment Education, Training, and Doctrine. This working group will address the issues of what education, training, and doctrine are required for assessments at all levels, addressing most issues in general terms for all assessments.
  2. National Strategic Assessment (Joint Staff: JMNA, CNAs, Campaign Plans)
  3. Strategic Assessment (CCMDs). These assessments tend to be performed by national government organizations or strategic headquarters such as USCENTCOM.
  4. Programmatic and Country-Level Assessments. This Working Group will focus on increasing requirements to demonstrate the value of security cooperation activities, to include the FY17 NDAA requirement for SECDEF to maintain an “Assessment, Monitoring, and Evaluation (AM&E)” program in support of DOD security cooperation activities. 
  5. Assessment Frameworks and staff implementation. This group will focus on the staff implementation of assessments. 
  6. Operations Assessment (Deployed Units, Service Components and JTFs). ). This group will examine the assessment-related support provided to deployed headquarters (brigade level and higher) and the service components.
  7. Data Visualization. This working group will share best practices and lessons learned when it comes to data visualization, in two senses - how can we visually convey an assessment, and how can we meaningfully incorporate visual analysis to strengthen that assessment?
  8. Intel and Predictive Analysis. This working group will address recent advances in predictive analysis techniques for the assessments, intelligence, and operations research community. 
  9. Polling Methods and Tools. This working group will examine how these data are being collected, analyzed, reported, and ultimately used by decision makers.
  10. Data Collection, Metrics, Measures, and Databases.  This group’s focus will be the foundation of all assessment: data. We will explore how we understand, collect, and use data for assessments with emphasis on insights for practitioners.

While much work has been done, much more remains. We invite you to join us in in building a stronger, more vibrant assessment community to together we can better help our commanders and leaders answer questions regarding progress being made against the plan, decisions needing to be made, and the risks associated with both current status and future decisions.