75 years of service to our nation

CNA Publication Archive: 2010

December 1, 2010

With the changing asset availability for engagement operations, US Naval Forces South asked CNA to help them understand the ramifications of the use of different naval assets for their Continuing Promise mission; specifically, the use of smaller, mostly amphibious, assets. When the role of the asset in engagement operations was examined, it became clear that smaller assets could still be as effective in terms of host nation responses as larger assets had been. The key to maintaining effectiveness was in choosing the right available set of activities that would be able to influence intended audiences. Construction, preventative health and a larger role for COMREL were a few of the recommended activity sets.

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November 1, 2010

SAND WARS is a strategic-operational level wargame of potential conflict between Algeria and Morocco. These two countries are part of the Maghreb, the Islamic northwest Africa. SAND WARS has two players: Algeria and Morocco. Each country can be played by a single individual, or a team of individuals.

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November 1, 2010

On 2 March 1969 Chinese troops ambushed and killed a group of Soviet border guards on Zhenbao Island one of the many disputed islands on the Ussuri River. The 2 March firefight ignited a new and dangerous round of Sino-Soviet hostilities. The transition from a conflict that in previous years had been carried out primarily through rhetoric and occasional fistfights to one that involved several direct conventional engagements between nuclear-armed states raised the prospect that hostilities might escalate to a nuclear confrontation. Following the conflicts on Zhenbao, Moscow adopted a coercive diplomacy strategy toward Beijing. This strategy combined repeated proposals for negotiations with Beijing to reach a peaceful settlement to the border dispute with increasingly provocative threats-including nuclear threats-if Chinese recalcitrance continued. Several times in the months following the bloodshed on Zhenbao, the Soviet Union deliberately hinted that it might use nuclear weapons, especially in a surgical strike on China's nascent nuclear facilities. By mid-October1969 China had become so concerned about a Soviet nuclear strike that the central leadership, including Mao Zedong, fled Beijing, and on 18 October China placed its rudimentary nuclear forces on full alert-the first and only time this order has been issued.

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October 1, 2010

Some important skills learned in Navy initial skill training are forgotten before being applied in the fleet, negatively affecting the Navy. We developed a systematic way to measure which skills from initial training are most likely to decay when performed in the fleet. Knowing which skills are likely to decay or are never learned can help identify the best course of remediation. We developed a Microsoft Access-based tool to collect subject matter experts' (SMEs') judgments of skill characteristics and criticality. We applied this tool to three ratings (IC, MM, EN) to demonstrate its applicability to several Navy ratings. We first reduced the occupational standards list for each rating to pinpoint the ones that are taught during initial skill training, are critical for the job, and likely to decay before they need to be used in the fleet. We used the SMEs' judgments to determine which skill characteristics are most predictive of skill decay. Most skills had a low likelihood of decay; a few skills had a high likelihood of decay. Next steps for the project could include developing performance tests for tool validation and developing remediation tools for skills most likely to decay.

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September 1, 2010

In this research, we explore the relationships between the Assessment of Individual Motivation or AIM (a test of non-cognitive skills), military performance, and other personal characteristics. We emphasize the performance of homeschoolers in particular, but we also analyze the performance of those holding other education credentials. Our results suggest that AIM does measure some important aspects of non-cognitive skills. AIM scores seem to predict attrition for some recruits; in particular, GED-holders with low AIM scores have higher attrition in the first year of service than others. The evidence is weaker for homeschoolers and for those with other education credentials.

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September 1, 2010

The Post-9/11 GI Bill represents a $25,000 increase in average education benefits available to enlisted Marines. In addition, servicemembers who meet eligibility criteria also can transfer their benefits to dependents. The Marine Corps asked CNA to investigate the potential behavioral impacts of the new education benefit, particularly on recruitment, retention, and the use of in-service Tuition Assistance education benefits. We estimate that expansion of benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill will decrease the Marine Corps' first-term reenlistment rate by 1.5 percentage points. Without the transferability feature (which requires a 4-year additional service commitment) the decrease in first-term reenlistment would be 0.7 percentage point higher. We estimate no adverse affect on officer retention, based on evidence from the Montgomery GI Bill era. We estimate positive recruitment effects, with the number of high-quality recruits (high-school graduates scoring 50 or more on the AFQT) increasing by 10 percent, with larger percentage gains among Hispanic and black high-quality recruits. We estimate a positive historical correlation between the size of the GI Bill benefit and Tuition Assistance use. As a result we expect Marine Corps TA use to increase by about 6 percent.

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September 1, 2010

CNA has maintained personnel databases for the Marine Corps for more than 30 years, with individual accession records going back to FY79. Just as long as we have been keeping the official records, we have been analyzing recruit characteristics and attrition through studies and scientific analyst memoranda. Over the years, we have identified characteristics that are particularly important to monitor because they are closely associated with successful adaptation to life in the Marine Corps. This annotated briefing analyzes the last 30 years, trying to answer the following questions: Have recruit characteristics changed over time? Have the relationships between recruit characteristics and subsequent attrition remained stable or have the patterns changed? What characteristics are most important for predicting success in the Corps? While most of the focus is on accession characteristics and bootcamp attrition, we also look at first-term attrition and long-term retention.

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September 1, 2010

On March 27, 2009, the United States unveiled a new strategy for Afghanistan which included the premise that the situation in Afghanistan/Pakistan was an international security challenge requiring a multinational response from principal stakeholders. Since then, U.S. military and interagency officials have probed China to see what Beijing would be willing to do to support that strategy and the U.S./NATO effort. The issues U.S. and NATO officials have discussed with China include providing targeted aid and reconstruction; opening the Afghan-China border to U.S./NATO forces for supply lines; and potentially providing troops in non-combat (or even combat) positions. This report addresses what the Chinese have done to support the strategy, what they may be persuaded to do, and what they appear unlikely to do.

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September 1, 2010

With the 60th anniversary of the establishment of formal diplomatic ties between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of India taking place in the spring of 2010, the time was right to further explore the China-India relationship. On July 29, 2010, CNA China Studies hosted a half-day roundtable to discuss this important topic. Participants, who included analysts from various think-tanks in Washington, DC, were asked to address the following issues: perspective on the China-India relationship, China's perspective on the China-India relationship, water issues, and the China-India relationship.

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September 1, 2010

On July 29, 2010, CNA China Studies hosted a half-day roundtable to discuss China's relations with and activities in Iran (see Appendix for the roundtable itinerary). Participants, who included academics and analysts from think-tanks in Washington, were asked to address the following issues: the interests and actors involved in the China-Iran economic relationship; security issues in China-Iran relations; the larger context of China-Iran relations; and, the implications of this relationship for the U.S. and regional security. This CNA report is based primarily on the presentations, findings, and discussions at the roundtable. It summarizes key themes heard at this event and does not represent a fully coordinated consensus of the roundtable participants. Points based on independent research are footnoted; points raised by participants or in the discussion are attributed to the roundtable in the text.

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September 1, 2010

The United States and China have engaged in security cooperation on a variety of international issues since the normalization of relations in 1979. In fact, security cooperation began even before the formal establishment of state-to-state relations.

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September 1, 2010

On February 5, 2003, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, DC, held a conference focused on China's interests in Central Asia. The author was asked to provide scene-setting remarks and historical context. The following is a transcript of the comments he made at the event.

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June 1, 2010

China's friendly relations with Pakistan are rooted in a shared suspicion of and uneasy history with India. The relationship has a strong military component and a growing economic dimension. PRC investments in Pakistan are driven by China's demand for energy and natural resources, and Pakistan's need for infrastructure to accommodate the development of both. China's investments in the Gwadar deep sea port, the Karakoram Highway, and planned rail lines have the potential to help development in landlocked western China by providing it with an ocean access. Still, as China's investments have grown, they have made Beijing more vulnerable to extremist threats in Pakistan. China-Pakistan relations face new challenges in the 21st century, where their interests may not always align. These challenges include the two countries' dissimilarly focused counter-terror concerns, the demands of economic globalization, and an expanded U.S. regional presence. The United States and China share common existential interests in Pakistan, but have neither the same threat assessment nor the same hierarchy of priorities. This, plus Beijing's propensity for bilateral action, means that U.S.-China coordination on issues involving Pakistan will remain difficult. But there are good possibilities for U.S. actions, aid, and infrastructure investments that would complement Chinese investments.

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June 1, 2010

This CNA study examines waterfront infrastructure support levels among Navy installations on the east and west coasts of the United States. Our analysis seeks to answer two research questions: are there differences in waterfront infrastructure support between coasts, and, if so, how much could the Navy reduce its annual funding requirements if it balanced waterfront infrastructure support levels? Using data on ship traffic from the Navy's WEBSKED database and data on waterfront infrastructure from the Navy's iNFADS database, we construct a measure of installation efficiency that we use to characterize waterfront infrastructure support levels across 11 Navy installations. We find that support level differences do exist, and that east coast installations are supporting more workload per dollar of waterfront infrastructure. We estimate that the Navy could reduce its annual requirements by roughly $65.5 million by balancing infrastructure support levels across these 11 installations. However, the bulk of the potential reductions—about $50 million—are from adjustments to piers and wharves, which may not be practical due to strategic concerns.

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June 1, 2010

Increases in the concentrations of atmospheric greenhouse gases from activities such as burning fossil fuels and deforestation have caused a measurable increase in global temperatures. As greenhouse gas concentrations continue to increase, further changes in the Earth's climate are expected. These changes may impact the location, frequency, and occurrence of natural hazards such as tropical cyclones, wildfires, floods, and winter storms. Thus, the historical data that are typically the basis of hazard identification and risk assessment may not accurately forecast future events. Consequently, we need to begin to evaluate and better understand how climate change could affect the identification and selection of disaster mitigation strategies, the types of preparedness activities that jurisdictions undertake, the execution of response operations, and the implementation of long-term recovery strategies.

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May 1, 2010

In April 2010, the Chief of Naval Operations convened a meeting of senior military, civilian, academic, business and policy professionals at the Center for Naval Analyses to discuss chal-lenges and opportunities for African security and development. This report provides an overview of perspectives and recommendations that emerged during that discussion.

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May 1, 2010

Maintaining an effective Navy requires identifying and attracting people with technical aptitude and placing them in ratings that use their aptitude. In this paper, we explore the interactions between the Navy?s increasing demand for Sailors with technical aptitude and pertinent changes in the civilian world. The technical aptitude of Sailors has increased substantially over the last decade. Moreover, today?s Sailors are more likely than past Sailors to serve in technical ratings. We find considerable evidence of the importance of ?job match?; those with technical aptitude who serve in technical ratings have considerably lower attrition than similar Sailors in non-technical ratings. While there is no evidence that technical Sailors come from different geographical areas than others, they do tend to be older and more educated; therefore, recruiting outside high schools may be a key component to attracting those with technical aptitude.

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April 1, 2010

This paper develops a model relating complexity to development program cost growth. The paper tests the model on a dataset of 176 completed development programs. The results show that there appears to be a trade-off between the gains from specialization and the costs of integration and coordination associated with complex systems. The paper develops a simulation to get better initial development cost estimates and to show a detailed picture of risk. The paper further develops a method to use the results of the model to determine the optimal number of contracts (span of control) for an acquisition strategy to manage a new program. Finally, the paper develops a method to use the results to determine under what conditions it may be in the government?s interest to award a program contract to a prime contractor or to a lead system integrator (LSI).

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April 1, 2010

The National Guard Youth Challenge (ChalleNGe) program is a quasi-military residential program for young high school dropouts. The ChalleNGe model includes a number of core components, with a focus on academics, physical fitness, life skills, and service. In this research, we focus on variation across programs, with a specific emphasis on geography. We estimate the number of high school dropouts within reasonable travel distances of various ChalleNGe sites and document possibilities for regionalization, in which high school dropouts from one state would enroll in a ChalleNGe program in a different state. We find that regionalization would provide a route for some sites to serve substantial numbers of dropouts.

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March 1, 2010

This paper was a quick response to an OPNAV Quadrennial Integration Group (QIG) question as to how Navy could be postured, deployed and structured to maintain dominance and influence (the ability to deter and reassure on a global scale) as a "global navy."

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February 1, 2010

We use the maintenance histories of APG-65 radar assemblies to show that analysis at the individual part level can provide valuable information about the reliability of parts. While traditional analysis focuses on average failure rates, in this study we show that it may be advantageous to the Navy to look at individual failure rates. We focus on service time between failures, which defines a repair cycle. We follow part histories from birth, over a series of repair cycles throughout the service life of a part. Our analysis shows that: (1) The reliability of new parts drops quickly over the first few repair cycles and stabilizes thereafter; (2) Identical parts may have different levels of reliability?some parts turn out to be lemons; and (3) We can identify lemons early in their life cycle, and we propose alternatives to dealing with them. The analysis of the APG-65 radar assembly presented in this study is a proof of concept that can extend to the analysis of other parts. Moreover, information about the cost of new parts and the costs of repairing broken parts would help the Navy define optimal retirement rules for average parts and early retirement rules for lemons.

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February 1, 2010

At their 15th year of service, military personnel who are eligible and intend to serve for 20 years must choose either: (1) High-3 retirement plan or (2) A reduced retirement (REDUX) and a $30,000 bonus paid at the 15th year of service. This paper is designed to help servicemembers make that decision. We describe the REDUX/bonus option as an early, partial cash-out of the servicemember?s retirement pension that the member pays back in the form of reduced retirement checks over his or her entire lifetime. We calculate how much the servicemember will ?pay back? (the reduction in pension benefits) and we calculate the implied APR or interest rate for this loan. For example, an E-7 who retires at age 38 with 20 years of service is paying an implicit interest rate of 14.5% and would see his or her retired pay reduced by $370,030 if he or she lived to 79 years. Even if the servicemember received the bonus tax free, the repayment amount is over 10 times the amount of the loan ($30,000). If the servicemember lives to 85, the repayment amount would be $489,310. For virtually all servicemembers, choosing REDUX/bonus is a bad (and costly) decision.

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January 1, 2010

Organizing OPNAV (1970 - 2009)

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January 1, 2010

The Enhanced Billet Analysis Tool (BAT) is a Microsoft Access application that allows users to quickly determine how changes to the force structure and the shore infrastructure affect the Navy's manpower requirements. Using TFMMS data, it can determine how changes to the force structure (and shore infrastructure) affect manpower requirements and costs, both within and beyond the FYDP. It can also estimate how changes to the force structure affect shore manpower requirements and the size of the Navy?s Individuals Account. To perform these calculations, BAT requires a substantial amount of data. At its heart lie billet data that define the military and civilian manpower requirements for each operational unit and support activity in the Navy. BAT contains data on every activity (both Navy and non-Navy) that has a requirement for Navy manpower. It also contains military and civilian manpower cost rates. To support the manpower requirements calculations within the Shore/Support Module, BAT requires data on (1) enlisted A-school, NEC, and recruit training, (2) ship and aircraft intermediate- and depot-level maintenance, (3) health care service functions, and (4) commercial activity functions. To keep BAT and its output relevant, these data sets need to reflect current data through periodic updates.

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January 1, 2010

The Commission on the National Guard and Reserves (CNGR) was chartered by Congress to assess the reserve component of the U.S. military and to recommend improvements to the system. The CNGR made 95 recommendations in its final report. One recommendation was to change the current time-based promotion eligibility system dictated by the Defense Officer Personnel Management Act (DOPMA) to a competency-based promotion eligibility system. The Navy asked CNA to evaluate the recommendation. The CNGR predicated the recommendation on the assertion that there was a shortage of officers with certain competencies and that the shortage was caused by the time-based promotion eligibility system. We found that this assertion could not be validated, so we approached our evaluation by reviewing DOPMA (and its reserve counterpart, ROPMA) as well as the substantial literature on officer management challenges to shed light on the effectiveness of moving to a competency-based promotion eligibility system. We found that moving to a competency-based promotion eligibility system was probably not feasible and would be neither necessary nor sufficient to address the officer management challenges highlighted in the literature. Instead, the Navy should use the flexibility allowed in the current promotion system more aggressively and should concentrate on compensation reform.

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January 1, 2010

The Commission on the National Guard and Reserves (CNGR) was chartered by Congress to assess the reserve component of the U.S. military and to recommend improvements to the system. The CNGR made 95 recommendations in its final report. One recommendation was to change the current time-based promotion eligibility system dictated by the Defense Officer Personnel Management Act (DOPMA) to a competency-based promotion eligibility system. The Navy asked CNA to evaluate the recommendation. The CNGR predicated the recommendation on the assertion that there was a shortage of officers with certain competencies and that the shortage was caused by the time-based promotion eligibility system. We found that this assertion could not be validated, so we approached our evaluation by reviewing DOPMA (and its reserve counterpart, ROPMA) as well as the substantial literature on officer management challenges to shed light on the effectiveness of moving to a competency-based promotion eligibility system. We found that moving to a competency-based promotion eligibility system was probably not feasible and would be neither necessary nor sufficient to address the officer management challenges highlighted in the literature. Instead, the Navy should use the flexibility allowed in the current promotion system more aggressively and should concentrate on compensation reform.

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January 1, 2010

In 2009, the Navy was tasked with developing a pilot program to offer an incentive to reservists to increase language skills, regional expertise, and cultural awareness (LREC). The Office of the Chief of Navy Reserve (OCNR) led this effort and requested that CNA help establish various program parameters, focusing on the incentive structure. This paper summarizes the decisions made to develop the pilot program?s parameters. We provide background on the military?s LREC programs and describe the challenges that impacted the formation of the pilot program. In addition to describing the program, the paper provides suggested metrics for measuring the pilot?s success, as well as metrics to determine if the incentive is appropriately sized and targeted.

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January 1, 2010

Civilian employment in the Department of Defense (DOD) fell drastically in the 1990s. The government?s lack of strategic planning during the downsizing may have resulted in a civilian workforce with disproportionately high numbers of older workers. As a result, many Navy civilians are becoming eligible for retirement, leaving the Navy at risk of losing considerable human capital. In this CNA-initiated project, we studied the magnitude of current and projected manning shortages related to increasing retirements. In doing this, we built expertise that will help the Navy address civilian manning issues: and created a database that will facilitate the analysis of other civilian manning issues.

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