Shared Understanding Across Levels of Command

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: W74V8H-06-C-0004
Agency Tracking Number: A043-030-1270
Amount: $729,999.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2006
Solicitation Year: 2004
Solicitation Topic Code: A04-030
Solicitation Number: 2004.3
Small Business Information
12 Gill Street Suite 1400, Woburn, MA, 01801
DUNS: 967259946
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Lawrence Sager
 Senior Human Factors Scie
 (202) 842-1548
Business Contact
 Margaret Clancy
Title: Chief Financial Officer
Phone: (781) 496-2415
Research Institution
In any mission involving hierarchical levels of command, a key success factor is the clear communication of intent, as well as a common understanding of the ongoing situation, across echelons. In practice, however, command intent may be distorted as subordinates communicate goals downward through the chain of command. To the extent that command intent is misunderstood by subordinates, inconsistencies will exist, possibly leading to misinterpretations, inappropriate actions, and compromised mission effectiveness. Hence, the challenge of this research program is to develop measures to assess shared understanding between echelons, and ultimately, to develop tools to facilitate that understanding in the field. In this proposal, we begin by outlining our Phase I findings, including the development of a deep understanding of the fundamental principles of commander’s intent, the identification of key mitigating factors that can either facilitate or impede shared understanding, and the identification of candidate methods for assessing “sharedness.” We then outline our Phase II strategy, which will involve model validation, measures implementation, and intervention implementation. Our vision is a comprehensive system of empirically-based methods that can be applied to the challenge of measuring and improving the processes through which commander’s intent is formulated, communicated, interpreted, and acted upon.

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

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