Quantitative Methods with Applications in Technology Policy

Professor: Alkire
Units: 0.5
Elective Course
Concentration: Quantitative Methods

This course will teach quantitative methods for assessing the performance of sensor, communication and computing system technologies. It will focus particular attention on applications to intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities aboard drones that are used to fight terrorism. As a recent congressional research report states, these ISR capabilities need to be assessed more frequently than other types of weapon system capabilities.

The quantitative methods taught may be used to address policy issues such as: determining the right mix and quantity of ISR systems to meet emerging demands; finding ways to employ ISR differently to improve the effectiveness of the resulting intelligence products and/or generate them more efficiently; identifying sensor, communication and computing upgrades that are needed to enable a particular surveillance capability. The methods also apply to the evaluation of similar technologies used elsewhere in the defense and commercial sectors. The course is designed for students who have an interest in technology policy.