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Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Statement of Task." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2016. The Role of Experimentation Campaigns in the Air Force Innovation Life Cycle. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/23676.
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A

Statement of Task

The need for a workshop and a study was set forth in Development Planning; A Strategic Approach to Future Air Force Capabilities, completed in 2014. Accordingly, the U.S. Air Force Office of the Assistant Secretary for Science, Technology and Engineering then asked the Air Force Studies Board of the National Research Council to convene a committee on the role of experimentation campaigns in the Air Force innovation life cycle.

An ad hoc committee consisting of industry, academia, and retired government was formed to do the following:

  1. Define the current state of practice of experimentation within the Air Force.
  2. Assess the role of experimentation in the innovation life cycle and address how it can support the Air Force’s future technology requirements.
  3. Evaluate the role of risk management and experimentation in the innovation life cycle.
  4. Evaluate current legislative, organizational, or other barriers that limit the use of experimentation within the Air Force.
  5. Review and recommend best practices for incentivizing experimentation based on an assessment of comparable S&T organizations.
  6. Recommend metrics that can be implemented across the Air Force to monitor and assess the use and value of experimentation.
  7. In addition, the committee will address any other factors deemed to be relevant, such as organizational structure or concepts of operation that could enhance the likelihood of successfully implementing a robust experimentation program within the Air Force acquisition community.
Suggested Citation:"Appendix A: Statement of Task." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2016. The Role of Experimentation Campaigns in the Air Force Innovation Life Cycle. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/23676.
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The Air Force (USAF) has continuously sought to improve the speed with which it develops new capabilities to accomplish its various missions in air, space, and cyberspace. Historically, innovation has been a key part of USAF strategy, and operating within an adversary’s OODA loop (observe, orient, decide, act) is part of Air Force DNA. This includes the ability to deploy technological innovations faster than do our adversaries. The Air Force faces adversaries with the potential to operate within the USAF’s OODA loop, and some of these adversaries are already deploying innovations faster than the USAF.

The Role of Experimentation Campaigns in the Air Force Innovation Life Cycle examines the current state of innovation and experimentation in the Air Force and best practices in innovation and experimentation in industry and other government agencies. This report also explores organizational changes needed to eliminate the barriers that deter innovation and experimentation and makes recommendations for the successful implementation of robust innovation and experimentation by the Air Force.

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