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Special Seminar: Enhancing Decision-Making in Security & Defense



3:30pm - 4:30pm ET


Meeting ID: 995 9695 0090
Passcode: 153207

Navigating the intricacies of modern security problems involves grappling with stochastic, uncertain, and non-stationary elements, often compounded by the presence of competing agents who have disparate knowledge and varied degrees of rationality. Despite these complexities, the persistent demand for logical and actionable decision support from senior leaders underscores the necessity for bespoke solutions, frequently requiring tools native to alternative disciplines. Addressing this imperative calls for an eclectic methodological perspective, drawing from diverse disciplines such as operations research, statistics, behavioral economics, and computer science, along with alternative schools of thought within each.

To illustrate this approach, we examine a subset of contemporary problems with significant real-world implications. Beginning with our recent work in adversarial machine learning, we emphasize a shift from the prevalent algorithmic culture to a data-modeling culture, contrasting with much of the existent literature. We employ various canonical operations-research methods to attack a decision-maker's inference on multivariate-Gaussian, hidden-Markov, and generic-Bayesian models. Shifting focus to the contemporary USAF pilot shortage, we discuss initial steps for its alleviation through the combined use of alternative data-science techniques. Thereafter, we delve into two quantitative methods for planning security operations, capitalizing on Bayesian representations of uncertainty as well as behavioral-economic models that capture an opponent's boundedly rational actions.

Hosted by Professor Laura Ray

About the Speaker(s)

William Caballero
Assistant Professor of Mathematical Sciences, US Air Force Academy

William Caballero

William N. Caballero is an assistant professor of mathematical sciences at the United States Air Force Academy. He holds a PhD and MS in operations research from the Air Force Institute of Technology as well as a BS in industrial engineering from the University of Houston. His research focuses on providing decision support in uncertain, multi-agent environments through the development of statistical and mathematical models, as well as the design of accompanying optimization routines. Caballero is an 11-year veteran of the US Air Force, currently holding the rank of major. His experience includes a tour in the Pentagon, as well as deployments supporting operations in South America and the Middle East, thereby compelling his motivation to bridge theory with real-world applications.


For more information, contact Ashley Parker at