Blockmodeling and the Estimation of Evolutionary Architectural Growth in Major Defense Acquisition Programs

Report Number: SYM-AM-16-049

Series: Acquisition Management

Category: Cost Management

Report Series: Symposium Proceedings

Authors: Matthew Dabkowski, Ricardo Valerdi

Title: Blockmodeling and the Estimation of Evolutionary Architectural Growth in Major Defense Acquisition Programs

Published: 2016-05-01

Sponsored By: Acquisition Research Program

Status: Published--Unlimited Distribution

Research Type: Other Research Faculty

Full Text URL: http://acquisitionresearch.net/files/FY2016/SYM-AM-16-049.pdf

Keywords: Major Defense Acquisition Programs, blockmodeling, architecture

Abstract:

It is well-known that cost overruns in Major Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAPs) are endemic, and requirements volatility is at least partially to blame. In particular, when the desired capabilities of a system change during its life cycle, substantial reengineering can result, especially when a new subsystem must be incorporated into an existing architecture. Of course, the likelihood and specifics of such additions are rarely known ahead of time, and predicting integration costs is challenging. In this paper, we present a novel algorithm to address this issue. In particular, leveraging an integer programming implementation of the social network analysis technique blockmodeling, we optimally partition the subsystems represented in Department of Defense Architecture Framework (DoDAF) models into architectural positions. Using this abstracted structure, we subsequently grow the architecture according to its statistical properties, and we estimate this unforeseen cost of evolutionary architectural growth via the Constructive Systems Engineering Cost Model (COSYSMO). We illustrate this process with a real-world example, discuss limitations, and highlight areas for future research.