Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England has ordered the creation of an
executive-level panel to spearhead modeling and simulation (M&S) efforts
department wide, according to an Aug. 8 DOD directive.
The undersecretary of Defense for acquisition, technology and logistics
will lead the new M&S Steering Committee. John Young, who currently
fills that position in an acting capacity until confirmed by the Senate,
has voiced strong support for modeling efforts, particularly those
projects striving to predict sentiments among foreign populations in
response to U.S. military actions.
Other key Defense Department officials to be represented on the panel
include the undersecretary of Defense for policy, the undersecretary of
Defense for personnel and readiness, the director of program analysis
and evaluation, and the director of operational test and evaluation,
according to England's directive. The services, the combatant
commanders, the Joint Staff and U.S. Joint Forces Command also will send
According to the document, M&S efforts for particular research areas
should be led by DOD M&S coordination agents, as directed by the
undersecretary of Defense for acquisition, technology and logistics.
These coordination agents are to replace the existing so-called
executive agents in the modeling and simulation world, the directive
DOD currently uses select offices or one of the military services as
executive agents to spearhead initiatives with implications for all
branches of the military. The title traditionally brings with it broad
influence, and the services often compete to be designated executive
agents. In the M&S realm, five such executive agents exist: the Air
Force, the Navy, the undersecretary of Defense for intelligence, the
Defense Intelligence Agency, and the assistant to the secretary of
Defense for nuclear, chemical biological defense programs, according to
the directive. They are in charge of M&S efforts in the domains air and
space, the oceans, the ground, intelligence, and defense against weapons
of mass destruction, respectively. A Pentagon spokeswoman did not return
a reporter's request for information about the role of the new
coordination agents versus executive agents by press time. (Sebastian
Sprenger, FCW.com - 8/31)
We knew this was coming. But, it appears that the DOD doesn't want to
talk about what it all means to us lowly practitioners.
I wonder if a committee has ever DONE anything?
Chair, Conference Committee
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