Research Summaries

Back Modeling and Simulation Tool to Enhance and Explore the Rules of Engagement Design Space for Non-Lethal Weapons

Fiscal Year 2018
Division Research & Sponsored Programs
Department Modeling, Virtual Environments & Simulation Institute
Investigator(s) Hall, Steven B.
Sponsor Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate (DoD)
Summary This effort is expected to build upon a previous research effort performed by the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS-17-M177-A) focused on the development of a multi-agent model of the tactical effectiveness of nonlethal weapons in engaging crowds of various kinds and temperaments.
This follow-on effort will specifically address how the judicious ‘targeting’ of nonlethal weapon, on specific elements of the crowd, can felicitously impact both the immediate emotional state and intentional behavior of a crowd as well as the more expansive and enduring sense of resentment, betrayal and/or loss of legitimacy that can be engendered, within the proximal population, and consequently directed at the host-state (which we are supporting) and/or our own defense/security forces, when the crowd is engaged as a whole.
Effective modeling of the influence of selective crowd targeting is expected to involve capturing both the contagious effects of localized aversive and opportunistic events, at various scales and impacts (generated by either the crowd itself or by our own engaging security forces) as well as the dynamics of the relative saliences of the collective ‘social identity’ of the crowd (and any constituent social identities) that such engagement events trigger.
The research will build upon an existing tool called WRENCH v2.2 (Workbench for refining Rules of Engagement against Crowd Hostilities). This effort will: enhance the underlying crowd behavior model; refine the NLW effects model; expand the range of crowd scenarios; and automate the search for viable/practical optimizing Rules of Engagement (ROE).
WRENCH’s key crowd behavior modeling foundation leverages a multi-agent complex adaptive generative social science approach. One of the key contributions of this work is a clear delineation of the combined temporally-dynamic psychological (cognitive) and sociological (network) influences of fear and anger on emergent crowd behavior. Security Force legitimacy is seen as being highly correlated with what the crowd perceives/cognizes as ‘excessive force’.
The objective of this research is to build and deliver, to the JNLWD, a tool that will recommend optimizing NLW ROEs that are both effective in managing hostile crowds and minimize the loss of security force (and/or State) legitimacy. The intent is to inform realistic requirements for system developers and provide guidance on the use of NLWs.
Keywords Crowd Modeling multi-agent modeling non-lethal effects modeling rules of engagement
Publications Publications, theses (not shown) and data repositories will be added to the portal record when information is available in FAIRS and brought back to the portal
Data Publications, theses (not shown) and data repositories will be added to the portal record when information is available in FAIRS and brought back to the portal