Celestine Ntuen: “Towards Analytical and Computational Sensemaking”

July 5, 2007 | USC ICT

Speaker: Celestine Ntuen

In asymmetric information environments, the deliberate military decision making processes (MDMP) with all their linearity assumptions are generally regarded as inadequate. Generating courses of action must be progressive and opportunistic. Thus, the classical analytical models of judgment and choice that fit force-on-force tactics must be recalibrated to fight against unknown enemies. Sensemaking, the process of connecting dots to disparate information and seeking explanation to potentially unexpected evolving situations, has been suggested as an embellishment to and as a precursor to existing MDMP. Unfortunately, these nascent decision systems lack analytical models that can capture the evolving states of battle dynamics and its information equivocality. This presentation reviews classes of analytical models suitable for sensemaking and discusses an on-going Bayesian Abduction Model (BAM) under development to support sensemaking process. Key challenges are identified. For example, Can sensemaking with all its tacit dimensions of knowledge be represented mathematically (and computationally)? Can analytical models capture the characteristics and give explanations to evolutive systems? Some demonstrations with problem types derived from the Cynefin model developed by Snowben at IBM Europe are presented.