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Guest Editor Introduction - Issue 86 Editor Introduction - Issue 862018-09-19T16:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClass485FABBFE79E475093FA31E836DC1C87"><img alt="" src="/library/arj/ARJ/ARJ86/Colombi.jpg" style="margin:5px;float:left;width:106px;height:144px;" />I thank Dr. Larrie Ferreiro for allowing me to introduce this themed edition of the Defense Acquisition Research Journal (ARJ). The three cost analysis articles in this edition reflect a small sampling of the diverse set of defense-focused acquisition research conducted at the Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT)’s Graduate School of Engineering and Management. Unlike many civilian graduate schools, all AFIT resident students complete a 12-plus-quarter-hour thesis as a requirement for completion of a master’s degree. This intense, long-term, experiential component of a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) graduate program is invaluable for developing critical thinking skills. Military and civilian graduate students and their faculty strive to find relevant research topics, with nearly 100% of student theses and dissertations sponsored by Air Force or other defense-related organizations. While the majority of AFIT graduate programs are in traditional engineering and science disciplines, other programs of study include systems engineering, operations research, logistics science, engineering management, and cost analysis. Many of the hundreds of thesis and dissertation topics each year directly address acquisition-related concerns.<br> <br> The first two articles address descriptive statistics for improved operating and support (O&S) cost estimation. Historically, O&S is DoD’s largest category of appropriations and often accounts for 42% to 73% of total life-cycle costs. For fixed wing aircraft, this article shows percentages of 53% to 65%. The Weapon Systems Acquisition Reform Act (WSARA) of 2009, followed by recent National Defense Authorization Act and Better Buying Power policy, emphasize the need for improved life-cycle cost estimates, with support provided from better visibility and management of actual O&S cost data. Historically, focus within DoD has been on acquisition development and production costs. Bunecke, White, Ritschel, and Bush’s article addresses this historic gap by looking beyond maintenance growth due to inflation. While, in practice, a 2% year-to-year escalation factor is used for Maintenance cost estimates, their analysis suggests 1.8% per year should be used; this becomes significant over a system’s life cycle.<br> <br> In the second article, O’Hanlon, Ritschel, White, and Brown seek out and identify the statistically significant differences across the cost element structure used in O&S estimation. Determining reliable future O&S costs early in a program allows important affordability considerations. They focus their analysis on the largest percentage of aircraft costs over the last 20 years (1996–2016), which fall into the categories of Manpower, Unit Operations, and Maintenance. In addition to determining statistics for different fixed wing aircraft types (bombers, fighters, unmanned aerial vehicles [UAV], etc.), they identify significant differences across those cost elements. Results allow portfolio managers to highlight program cost element outliers. Both these studies are relevant in the current environment of improved affordability considerations; acquisition research provides the knowledge, insights, and tools to provide needed improvements.<br> <br> The third article embraces “big data” analytical methods, specifically text mining using word relationship analysis, sentiment analysis, and clustering. This research, by McGowin, Ritschel, Fass, and Boehmke, is a unique approach to find insights from acquisition reform data. This small study is groundbreaking for acquisition research—a new approach to identify qualitative categories, relationships, and trends on legislation directed at five major acquisition reforms. Since many of the quantitative metrics (such as average program cost growth) have remained unchanged over the last 50 years, data mining could provide new qualitative insights. After demonstrating reliability of the technique using an alternate method (Grounded Theory), the results indicate that past reforms may not fully align with the issues identified by the experts.<br> <br> DoD’s current environment provides a great opportunity to influence acquisition policy and practice through high-quality acquisition research. In addition to cost analysis (exemplified in these three articles), policy makers, program executive officers (PEOs), program managers (PMs), and their staffs need new insights into a variety of defense-related system challenges. After all, defense acquisition is a complex, adaptive, socio-politico-technical system. The weapon systems and support systems acquired are more complex, more internetworked, and have greater opportunities for disruptive technology. Some trends that will continue to challenge our acquisition programs will include agile development strategies, complex adaptive systems, system of systems, autonomous and self-learning systems, human-systems integration and human agent teaming, technology innovation, and cyber physical system security considerations. Within the systems engineering community, two strategic areas are generating great promise to address these trends. The first area is the evolution and maturation of Model-based Systems Engineering (MBSE). This approach of describing and analyzing larger and more complex systems, in both form and function, using System Modeling Language (SysML) has achieved widespread adoption commercially. The defense industry must now embrace it organically with appropriate education, training, and tools to communicate effectively with our industry partners. The second area is complementary to MBSE; it is the design and implementation of a digital engineering environment. Effectively, this enterprise information technology solution could streamline the end-to-end life cycle of programs by digitizing the acquisition process from concept through engineering design and manufacturing, production, test, and through to operational service. Imagine the future defense acquisition system that effectively and efficiently digitizes, stores, accesses, moves, manages, and manipulates the vast data related to a weapon system across the myriad of organizations, and across the life cycle from cradle to grave.<br> <br> … I cannot wait to read about these advancements in this journal.</div>string;#/library/arj/blog/Guest-Editor-Introduction---Issue-86
From the Chairmen and Executive Editor - Issue 84 the Chairmen and Executive Editor - Issue 842018-01-01T12:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClass71EC08DA9C904E039422E09761C11AA2"><img alt="" src="/library/arj/PublishingImages/larrie.jpg" style="float:left;margin-left:3px;margin-right:3px;" />The theme for this edition of Defense Acquisition Research Journal is “From Concept to Execution.” The first article is “Promoting Disruptive Military Innovation: Best Practices for DoD Experimentation and Prototyping Programs.” The author, George M. Dougherty, analyzes six Department of Defense experimentation and prototyping programs, and also studies previous disruptive military innovations to develop recommendations on how best to accelerate new technologies from idea to fielded capability.<br> <br> Next, “Unmasking Cost Growth Behavior: A Longitudinal Study” by Cory N. D’Amico, Edward D. White, Jonathan D. Ritschel, and Scott J. Kozlak examines cost growth factors for 36 Department of Defense aircraft programs at five critical gateways in the program development, including Critical Design Review, Initial Operational Capability, and Full Operational Capability.<br> <br> The final article, “Mitigating Cognitive Biases in Risk Identification: Practitioner Checklist for the Aerospace Sector” by Debra Emmons, Thomas A. Mazzuchi, Shahram Sarkani, and Curtis E. Larsen examines historical data and uses subject matter expert judgment to develop a checklist for risk identification and evaluation, and offers strategies to reduce pervasive cognitive biases in these activities.<br> <br> The featured book in this issue’s Defense Acquisition Professional Reading List is America Inc.? Innovation and Enterprise in the National Security State by Linda Weiss, as reviewed by Michael McMahon.<br> <br> The masthead has undergone another change from the last edition. Mike Kotzian has been replaced on the Editorial Board by William Conroy. We thank Mike for all his efforts, and welcome Bill aboard in his new role.</div>string;#/library/arj/blog/From-the-Chairmen-and-Executive-Editor---Issue-84
From the Chairman and Executive Editor - Issue 83 the Chairman and Executive Editor - Issue 832017-09-01T12:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClass6123866E41934CCBA58DBC30ED3C87A1"><img alt="" src="/library/arj/PublishingImages/larrie.jpg" style="float:left;margin:3px;" />The theme for this edition of Defense Acquisition Research Journal is “Assessing Success.” <br> The first article is “Estimating an Acquisition Program’s Likelihood of Staying Within Cost and Schedule Bounds.” The authors, Ryan Trudelle, Edward D. White, Clay Koschnick, Jonathan D. Ritschel, and Brandon Lucas, present an empirical procedure that determines which programmatic characteristics appear to predict the likelihood that programs will exceed certain cost and schedule overrun thresholds. The next article, “Assessing the Likelihood of Achieving Prototyping Benefits in Systems Acquisition” by Maroun Medlej, Steven M. F. Stuban, and Jason R. Dever, proposes an approach for assessing the probability of achieving the expected prototyping benefits, based on identifying and weighting the factors that produce those outcomes. <br> <br> Following this is the article by Scott S. Haraburda, “Supply Chain Management Maturity Level Assessment,” which examines the Supply Chain Management Maturity Model developed by Crane Army Ammunition Activity and suggests how other DoD organizations can use this model to determine the focus areas for initial and ongoing improvements. Finally, the online-only paper by Tim Clardy, Shahram Sarkani, and Thomas A. Mazzuchi, “Preferred Job Competencies of Engineering Leaders in DoD,” analyzes the job advertisements for DoD engineering leadership positions, and interprets the competencies preferred among the different employers in six dimensions. <br> The featured book in this issue’s Defense Acquisition Professional Reading List is Congress Buys a Navy: Politics, Economics, and the Rise of American Naval Power, 1881–1921 by Paul E. Pedisich, reviewed by Dr. Benjamin Franklin Cooling of the National Defense University.<br> Finally, I am pleased to take this opportunity to express my admiration for, and extend my appreciation to, the DAU Press staff, notably Norene Taylor, Emily Beliles, and Diane Fleischer, who are responsible for the Defense Acquisition Research Journal receiving the APEX 2017 Award for Publication Excellence in the category of “One-of-a-Kind Publications—Government.” This is the third year in a row that the Defense ARJ has been so recognized, which is a testament to their hard work and dedication.</div>string;#/library/arj/blog/From-the-Chairman-and-Executive-Editor---Issue-83
From the Chairman and Executive Editor - Issue 82 the Chairman and Executive Editor - Issue 822017-06-28T12:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClassF228579D48E9462897F9A46C06EBA1A7"><img alt="" src="/library/arj/PublishingImages/larrie.jpg" style="float:left;width:148px;height:183px;" />The theme for this edition of Defense Acquisition Research Journal is “Using Past Trends to Predict Future Acquisition Outcomes.” The first article is “Analyzing Cost Growth at Program Stages for DoD Aircraft” by Scott J. Kozlak et al. They analyzed 30 military aircraft programs to determine when cost growth occurred during the acquisition and development cycle, and developed some unique and useful insights that future programs can use for prediction. The next article by Sean Lavelle, “Estimating Firm-Anticipated Defense Acquisition Costs with a Value-Maximizing Framework,” uses a value-maximizing framework to predict how firms will bid under varying levels of risk sharing, allowing the government to estimate future costs more accurately.<br> <br> Following this is “Informing Policy through Quantification of the Intellectual Property Lock-in Associated with DoD Acquisition,” by Christopher Berardi, Bruce Cameron, and Ed Crawley, which quantitatively analyzes intellectual property lock-in trends in DoD acquisition and their correlation to internal research and development funding. Then, Felix K. Chang, Christopher J. Dente, and<br> Eric A. Elster, in “The Impact of a Big Data Decision Support Tool on Military Logistics: Medical Analytics Meets the Mission,” describe a combat simulation tool that showed how to reduce the logistical footprint for blood resupply in a military theatre of operations.<br> <br> This issue has two online-only papers. First, “Beyond Integration Readiness Level (IRL): A Multidimensional Framework to Facilitate the Integration of System of Systems” by Clarence Eder, Thomas A. Mazzuchi, and Shahram Sarkani, looks at expand-ing the current acquisition practice of characterizing systems by their Technology Readiness Level (TRLs) by using the concept of Integration Readiness Level (IRLs) to address growing inte-gration challenges of System-of-Systems acquisition programs. The second, by Elizabeth Mezzacappa and her co-authors, is titled “Effectiveness Testing and Evaluation of Non-lethal Weapons in Crowd Scenarios: Metrics, Measures, and Design of Experiments.” As the name implies, it discusses test and evaluation methods for benchmarking and comparison of non-lethal weapons intended for use in crowd management situations, the results of which can be used for Analysis of Alternatives and trade-space studies. The featured book in this issue’s Defense Acquisition Professional Reading List is Destructive Creation; American Business and the Winning of World War II by Mark R. Wilson, reviewed by Dr. Benjamin Franklin Cooling of the National Defense University.<br> <br> Finally, there are several changes to the Defense ARJ masthead. Sharp-eyed readers will have noticed over the past year that the Research Advisory Board, which had been established to review and provide direction for the research agenda and publications, had been steadily diminishing in size as many of the Board mem-bers departed their senior-level positions during the last year of the previous administration. At the same time, the responsibilities for providing direction to defense acquisition research has been increasingly borne by the Editorial Board, whose makeup is now two-thirds non-Defense Acquisition University members (including international representation). This Editorial Board arrangement now brings the same type of outside experience and perspectives as did the Research Advisory Board. This has led us to disestablish the Research Advisory Board, with its former functions now subsumed by the Editorial Board.Dr. Mary Redshaw, the last “surviving” member of the Research Advisory Board, has now joined the Editorial Board. Dr. Yvette Rodriguez has also joined, while Dr. Andre Murphy has departed. We thank the former members for their service, and welcome the new ones to continue the strong tradition of advancing the state of knowledge in the defense acquisition community.</div>string;#/library/arj/blog/From-the-Chairman-and-Executive-Editor---Issue-82