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Tools to Support the Assesment of Planned Courses of Action

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 41309
Amount: $98,857.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: N/A
Award Year: 1998
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
1750 Commence Center Blvd, North
Fairborn, OH 45324
United States
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Thomas Miller
 (937) 873-8166
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution

Evaluating a course of action (COA) is not trivial. The planner needs to have a strong experience base to detect unintended consequences, and to imagine how the COA will be carried out in the context of the situation. Recent research has identified a variety of several different strategies for COA evaluation, ranging from a structured examination of alternative COAs to a mental wargaming of individual COAs. The choice of strategy depends on factors such as time pressure and uncertainty. Currently, there are no adequate tools to support naturalistic strategies of COA evaluation. In Phase I, we propose to identify the COA evaluation strategies used by skilled planners, and to determine the primary barriers to rapid and effective COA evaluation. We will conduct cognitive task analyses with experience planners along with observation of planning exercises to ensure that we address the most damaging barriers to COA evaluation. Based on these finding, we will select the tools and technologies that offer the greatest potential for improving the COA evaluation process. In Phase II we will adapt these tools and technologies so they can be demonstrated evaluated and improved.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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