On-demand geospatial data for target audience analysis
Our PSYOP soldiers need a tool or suite to enable on-demand query and delivery of open source satellite/other geo sensing data to support Target Audience Analysis (TAA).
The Target Audience Analysis Model (TAAM) provides the framework to identify and study foreign Target Audiences (TA). Using the TAAM, PSYOP Sergeants examine the motivations and consequences of behavior to determine how best to influence the TA. TAA is the cornerstone of effective PSYOP and accurate and worthwhile TAA requires research and in-depth analysis of large amounts of information.
Example Use Case A
A Regional PSYOP Team (“RPT”) is participating in the implementation of a crop replacement program to sway farmers from growing a particular sensitive crop. The funder of the program needs help identifying specific areas to promote the program. It has asked the Regional Team to help identify areas and audiences to help implement the crop replacement program.
The RPT had previously worked with another organization to support eradication operations of this particular crop, learning that they had used thermal sights to identify radiant temperature variations to spot marijuana growth.
The RPT begins its analysis by using the “space suite” to identify heat anomalies along a geofenced area to nominate possible fields where this crop is grown. RPT then uses that data to feed their initial face to face engagements, ultimately facilitating their Target Audience Analysis.
Example Use Case B
A Regional PSYOP Team (RPT) has created an anti-guerilla defection campaign for extremists operating in a particular densely forested area. Team must determine an appropriate timeline to conduct sustained messaging via tactical radio broadcasts, as well a preferred locations for deploying their tactical radio station.
Team uses the “space suite” to identify best Line of Sight (LoS) for deployment of their tactical radio station; LoS query helps identify terrain which may interfere with radio broadcast propagation range.
Additionally the Team utilizes the “space suite” to analyze meteorological data to help identify monsoon seasons in the rainforest. Rain data was collected in an attempt to identify best time for message dissemination to elicit defection, as extremists may be ideologically vulnerable during peak rain seasons (low morale).
Q&A with SFC Robert Rosales
What types of data do you want to able to have at your fingertips?
Typically, tactical echelons do not have access to the various assortments of geospatial data which can be used by the end user across the spectrum of tactical operations. We have access to basic imagery, but those specific sensor-driven data sets are often out of our reach. If available those data sets are difficult to interpret without geospatial analysis.
Between, visualization of that data and automated analysis of large data sets, what is the emphasis/priority?
Visualization of that data would be the priority to support the tactical end user.
What types of sensors and data do you see being valuable to attaining the insights you need? What are the deficiencies in data you currently have?
OPIR, thermal, meteorological, High resolution Imaging, EW sensors. There are no deficiencies in the data, there are only difficulties in interpreting and requesting the data. Understanding that the military enterprise, as a whole, has collected a lot of this data, only looking to archive and access it, efficiently and easily.
How valuable is is better integration (fusion) with non-traditional GIS data sets, including building maps, building management systems, and government records? For example, are you just looking for “better” geospatial data fusion dashboards?
How on-demand and immediate does the data/insight need to be?
On demand is essential, but the timestamp on the data does not need to be current or immediate. Any data is better than data we have to wait on to receive.
What are the intended goals for using a smartphone as the interfacing device?
Smartphones are great in for impromptu planning session internally within the team, or with partnered forces. Smartphones can also augment change in missions, by providing quick analysis of the situation with that device.
What kind of computing and network resources do you have when in AOR? For example, are their signals that would enable you to receive data on your smartphone/ipad/other handheld device?
Think Panasonic Toughbook with commercial internet, as our top tiered system. Then of course, handheld devices like ipads and iphones are also available, working off of host nation cell networks.
Would you like a potential platform that you could use to deploy your own targeted applications for various tasks? For example, this platform would allow you to deploy applications without the need for programming skills but allow you to customize to your needs.
We use systems like that already, with dashboards and widgets, and to be honest, it becomes somewhat difficult to use the capabilities of each application to their full extent, when deployed individually. An all-in-one platform that addresses our various data needs would be amazing.