Assessments in the global peace operations initiative: a systems engineering approach
Dausman, Aaron C.
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This thesis decomposed the problem of operational assessments within the Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI) and then proposed a comprehensive framework to better address the challenge. This analysis was conducted for the United States Southern Command but is generalizable to other GPOI implementers, including other combat commands as well as State Department offices. The problem space was considered using standard systems engineering techniques such as stakeholder and functional analyses. Given the complex and ill-defined nature of the problem, systems architecting methods were applied to lend structure to the solution space; specifically, a capabilities-based architecture, adapted from an existing IT model, was used to generate a coherent framework. The proposed architecture balanced technical and non-technical elements of the system and provided a means to develop appropriate metrics that were traceable to the stated objectives and outcomes. The assessment framework was built from a systems engineering viewpoint; however, several heuristics from the field of operational assessments were also employed to provide additional practical improvements. The findings proposed that the GPOI adopt a coherent assessment framework that emphasizes traceability of all metrics and a more complete measurement of the GPOI system.
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