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HSCB Focus 2010 Overview. August 5-7, 2009 Chantilly, Virginia Sponsored by Office of Secretary of Defense (OSD), Human Social Cultural Behavior Modeling Program Reported by Kathy Ertell. Conference Purpose. Sponsored projects (grantees) demonstrate progress

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HSCB Focus 2010 Overview

August 5-7, 2009

Chantilly, Virginia

Sponsored by Office of Secretary of Defense (OSD),

Human Social Cultural Behavior Modeling Program

Reported by Kathy Ertell

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Conference Purpose

Sponsored projects (grantees) demonstrate progress

Idea exchange between program leadership, contractors, users, and stakeholders

Feedback on direction and success of HSCB for program leaders

Identify new partners and evaluate current partners

Planning for transitions, demonstrations, integration

Exploration of funding opportunities


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Military – Army, Navy, Air Force, DTRA, DARPA

Defense Contractors – large and small

Universities – many

National Laboratories – small contingent

International government – Canada, Netherlands

About 600 attendees

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Technical Session Focus Areas

Model validation and verification

Architecture for socio-cultural modeling

Operational influence modeling and decision support

Mission rehearsal and training

Visualization and geo-spatial analysis

Social network analysis

Understanding human behavior

Advancing analytics in irregular warfare

Transitioning HSCB tools

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Model Validation and Verification

How to evaluate predictive models to see if they are valid, and if they can be verified – are they relatively accurate and reliable?

Theories and methods

Special techniques for validating social-cultural and human behavioral models

Computational science methods

Test beds

Continuous testing once models are deployed

Expert systems analysis

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Architecture for Socio-cultural Modeling

Conceptual design and operational structure of computer systems and programs

New architectures to support design, development, operation of socio-cultural models

Limitations of computer architecture

Integration of existing tools

Designing user interfaces

Focus on what’s being developed, not what’s existing

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Operational Influence Modeling and Decision Support

How modeling can help commanders identify trends and develop courses of action

How models can forecast based on collecting, extracting, and assessing data from various sources

Cultural geography – environment, people, things, operations, laws, cultural norms

Approaches to predict behavior – demonstration projects, analogies to models used for other purposes

Using data from communication (email, media, blogs)

Resources for insurgency/terrorism prediction

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Mission Rehearsal and Training

Training the military forces in cultural issues

Resources, programs, and needs

Learning models, theory

Tools: simulation of intercultural interactions, interpersonal skill development, role playing, scenarios

Game-based training

Web-based training

Continuous training

Evaluation: does the training help?

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Geo-Spatial Visualization and Analysis

How GVA fits into the military mission

Approaches to visualizing the data, model outputs to make it useful to end users, who are not computer gurus

Gaps and challenges in the GVA tools in use

Reports from projects that are refining current tools and developing new tools

Probably the most well-developed technique – has its own conference

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Social Network Analysis

State of SNA in the military: gap in practice and theory, stand-alone capabilities with little integration of tools and results with other analysis

Developing meaningful and useful SNA – demonstrate the value to the military

Validation techniques – does it work?

Individual SNA tools and integration – analyzing media, web, crowd, community behavior, as groups

Crowd behavior test bed: Target Behavioral Response Laboratory

Visualizing belief systems from SNA

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Understanding Human Behavior

Cognitive neuroscience –brain responses to events and messages, and correlates of decision making

Using opinion surveys to measure political unrest

Behavior of crowds in labs and computer simulations

Tools for using stories and narratives to understand people and their behavior

Cultural influences on reasoning

Conflict modeling

Nonverbal behavior

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Advancing Analytics in Irregular Warfare

Irregular warfare: struggles among state and non-state actors for status, legitimacy, influence in their population or country

Old models of warfare do not fit irregular warfare

DOD needs to be able to analyze the irregular warfare environment

Challenges in development, data analysis, verification

How to do better analysis

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Transitioning HSCB Tools

Roundtable discussion – how to make progress in getting applications to the end users

Need for open source data to improve quality of science

Need to link language and culture, and make better use of machine-language translation – needed because of the huge volume of data

Overcoming skepticism among end users

Understanding the military and its culture, in order to make tools the military can – and will- use

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General Impressions

The military is looking for answers to problems they have never faced before – new techniques for new situations.

There is skepticism in the military about whether HSCB modeling will work.

There is enormous enthusiasm among defense contractors and universities for participating in the work.

Many presentations seemed pie-in-the-sky, still conceptual, not well-developed – perhaps due to only 6 months of work.

Heavy emphasis on computer analytics and modeling of easily available data – not much on gathering data about individuals.

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More General Impressions

Defense contractors and academia had, by far, the largest number of attendees.

DOE Labs did not present any work that was unexpected or out of character with our usual missions

DOE work focused on predictive analytics and computational methods

DOD actively seeking to involve small business and academia – role for National Labs may be limited.

Many attendees were networking and looking for funding opportunities.

DOD was actively evaluating their contractors.