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The Role of Experimentation in Building Future Naval Forces
The second bullet item in Recommendation 6 primarily addresses tools. Augmenting tools for experimentation, particularly M&S enhancements for future campaigns, is required for both joint and naval experimentation. Two strategies can and should be used to mitigate the funding impacts—the strategy of leveraging USJFCOM’s efforts to evolve its own Continuous Experimentation Environment10 (thereby ensuring compatibility), and that of prioritizing the enhancements in accordance with their “need dates” as experimentation campaigns are developed for the future.
BALANCE NAVAL AND JOINT EXPERIMENTATION
As joint operations continue to leverage naval capabilities, planning is needed to link naval and joint experimentation across a spectrum of activities ranging from the earliest concept development through analyses, war games, and simulations, leading ultimately to limited-objective experiments and larger fleet experiments. Given this requirement, the committee views the current state in naval experimentation as having both limitations and opportunities.
Joint concept development requires more synergistic collaboration with the Naval Services than is now taking place. Concept development for the Navy and the Marine Corps is focused at the NWDC and the MCCDC, respectively, and on the joint side at the USJFCOM. Although these organizations are interacting, the committee believes that the interaction is not as close or extensive as it needs to be. While the development of joint concepts does involve the Naval Services, it does not appear to build on the Services’ concepts in a substantive way; nor is there a good, detailed crosswalk between the joint concepts and those developed by the Naval Services.
In the past the Navy and Marine Corps have participated with USJFCOM in a number of joint experimentation events ranging from war games to field experiments. USJFCOM is currently planning a significant program of future experimentation activities. The Naval Services are expected to be active participants and should play a substantive role in defining them. There are also opportunities to expand joint experimentation through the Combatant Commands and through cross-Service activities, the latter particularly necessary to investigate joint interactions at the tactical level (though recent Marine Corps experiments with their tactical focus do not appear to have significant cross-Service or joint perspective). However, a mechanism is needed to balance and synchronize joint and naval experimentation, given the demand placed on the resources available.
Discussed in detail in Chapter 4, in the subsection entitled “Synopsis of Results of Joint Forces Command Experimentation to Date.”