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Soft/Hard Complementarity Current Work and Initial Perspectives EPSRC Network Meeting 1 Mar 01.

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Presentation on theme: "Soft/Hard Complementarity Current Work and Initial Perspectives EPSRC Network Meeting 1 Mar 01."— Presentation transcript:

1 Soft/Hard Complementarity Current Work and Initial Perspectives EPSRC Network Meeting 1 Mar 01

2 Topics for discussion zMoDs Modelling and Simulation Strategy for Analysis zSome personal perspectives from the Unconventional Analysis Workshop held last Oct zCurrent work and issues

3 MoD M&S Strategy for Analysis

4 MoD M&S Strategy for Analysis: Overview zVersion 2 now available –Written by CDA on behalf of MoD stakeholder community –Copies can be made available zContains four Thrust Areas: –1.Flexible analysis techniques –2.Functionality focus areas - C2 and logistics/sustainability –3.Improving the quality and integrity of the analytical process –4.Making the best use of technology developments

5 Updated Strategy: Key Tenets zA UK MoD Modelling and Simulation Strategy for Analysis –Used to drive strategies and implementation plans in individual areas –Not just for CDA/DERA but for all analysis done on MoDs behalf zBuilds on the previous (1997) version zLess model-centric –Analyst at least as important as the software –Principles should apply equally to all OA techniques zEmbraces work on role of Synthetic Environments in OA

6 Thrust 1: Flexible Analysis Techniques Critical Principles zDelivery of faster, better, cheaper analysis –but still of an appropriate quality zTransition from perception that analysts role is Running the model… to …supporting the decision (maker) using analytical techniques as appropriate to assist

7 Thrust 3: Improving the quality and integrity of the analytical process Critical Principles zCrucial element is fitness for purpose (FFP) –Determine if something is valid in the context of what it is being used for zFFP embraces ideas from Verification, Validation and Accreditation zAn ability to prove FFP in a timely fashion and at commensurate cost is also essential zRelies on assessment of Methodology, User, Data, Review, (Concept)

8 Thrust 4: Making best use of technology development Critical Principles zCapture current practice and capabilities zMaintain an awareness of likely relevant changes in technology that could be used to support analysis zProvide guidance on best practice and changes to best practice arising from technology opportunities

9 Some Personal Perspectives from the Unconventional Analysis Seminar

10 Perspectives (1) zKnowledge of the social processes into which the OR is being fed is vital This particularly influences "new" methods but applies generally to OR zThe hard/soft divide and the debate it engenders is both unhelpful and potentially divisive –Spectrum vs Quantisation ? –Techniques such as MCDA crystallise the debate They are hard to really soft modellers but soft to really hard modellers !

11 Perspectives (2) zJudgements are necessary in all OR and must be made by appropriately qualified and/or empowered individuals. zAnalysts need to be aware of all OR techniques –This needs to be better facilitated by the OR community –Also demands a willingness to embrace newer methods as appropriate but equally not to ignore the "classical" OR methods that still have much to offer z There is strength in (managed) diversity –Back towards our original multi-disciplinary roots ?!

12 Summary Current Work and Issues zCurrent work –Ideas flowing from MoD M&S Strategy Work on fitness for purpose across all M&S Work on best practice capture and promulgation –Method Logbooks, building on previous work on model validation logbooks zIssues –What can Soft learn from Hard ? –What can Hard learn from Soft ? –How can we use them together to best effect ? –How can we escape the divisive nature of such terminology in future ?


14 Underlying Principle 1 Using Models of an Appropriate Level of Complexity zThe analytical approach must be simple enough to be understandable, yet able to represent adequately the key features of the problem under consideration zIt has long been understood by Operational Analysts that, in dealing with complicated situations, simple models that provide useful insights are often to be preferred to models that get so close to the real world that the mysteries they intend to unravel are repeated in the model and remain mysteries. (The Lanchester Legacy, Vol III Chapter 9 (Bowen, McNaught))

15 Put another way... zEverything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler. ….Albert Einstein

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