in that setting are made on a collection of many variables, not just one, and often involve trade-offs based on context, mission, and judgment.
Both science and engineering provide a basis for insights that can improve the decision making abilities of small unit leaders. This chapter has reviewed selected traditional and evolving approaches to cognitive psychology and cognitive neuroscience as the scientific basis for decision making. It has also discussed the roles that information integration, tactical decision aiding, and physiological monitoring can play in engineering support for decision making. The chapter closes with the committee’s last finding:
FINDING 7: Established and emerging research in human cognition and decision making is highly relevant to developing approaches and systems that support small unit decision making. Cognitive psychology can provide significant guidance in developing technologies that support the decision maker, including approaches to information integration, tactical decision aids, and physiological monitoring and augmented cognition. However, technologies that do not incorporate human-centered design methods—such as those of cognitive systems engineering—may not generate useful and usable in-theater decision aids for the small unit leader. Lastly, the emerging field of cognitive neuroscience may have significant potential for developing the understanding of the fundamental neurophysiological mechanisms underlying human decision making. Although research in this area is very new, over the next few decades it may generate a fundamental paradigm change in scientific approaches to understanding human perception, sensemaking, and decision making.