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Intelligence analysis. Life Sciences. Case Study Assignment. (Case Study Sample)


1. Course Objective.
CO-3 Apply a structured methodology.

2. Assignments:
Forum: [Optional] Using Structured Methodologies. Although structured methodologies have been around for decades, I would like to know if any of you have ever used one and if so, for what problem set? I’d also be interested in getting your thoughts as to how valuable you found the use of structured methodologies to be. This is an optional forum and will not be graded for credit.
ACH: Step #3: Analyze the “diagnosticity” of the evidence and arguments
Step #4: Delete evidence with no diagnostic value
Step #5: Draw tentative conclusions about each hypotheses
Step #6: Identify “linchpin” evidence
Note: All four assignments will be submitted for grading in the same document and at the same time.
3. Key Topics and Concepts.
a. Topic: Analysis of Competing Hypotheses
Reading: Psychology of Intelligence Analysis
Goal: Apply Steps 3-6 of the ACH process to the PRC-Taiwan scenario.
b. Topic: Types of Information
Reading: Surprise Attack
Goal: Assess the quality of information from the PRC-Taiwan scenario.
c. Topic: Intentions and Capabilities
Reading: Surprise Attack
Goal: Differentiate intentions from capabilities

4. Overview. we’re going to continue with the ACH exercise by completing the third and fourth steps of the ACH process which are designed to identify evidence supporting and refuting each hypothesis and continue with our readings from Surprise Attack: The Victim’s Perspective. As you’re hopefully learning, structured methodologies are designed to help you objectively organize information so you can separate the “signal” from the “noise.” No one methodology is necessarily better than the other but their processes are largely the same: identify information, develop your hypotheses, test or weigh your hypotheses, and report your findings.
5. Written Lecture. This weeks written lecture consists of a detailed breakdown of ACH steps 3-6 and begin on the following page.
(Continued on next page) 
¬– ACH Step Three –
Analyze the “diagnosticity” of the evidence and
arguments you’ve gathered
Now that you have your evidence formatted in the matrix, analyze how each piece of evidence relates to each hypothesis. This differs from the normal procedure, which is to look at one hypothesis at a time in order to consider how well the evidence supports that particular hypothesis (that will be done in Step 5). For Step 3, you work across the rows of the matrix, examining one item of evidence at a time to see how consistent that item of evidence is with each of the hypotheses.
1. Overview. Using the evidence developed during Step #2, determine whether each piece of evidence is consistent (+), inconsistent (-), or irrelevant to (//) each hypothesis.

2. Instructions. Using the same sheet you entered your evidence in for Step #2, analyze how each piece of evidence relates to the three hypotheses. For example, assess whether or not “PLAN amphibious units uploading PLA infantry divisions” is consistent with H1 (political solution), H2 (limited intervention), and H3 (direct attack) by entering a minus (-), plus (+), or (//) for irrelevant.

H1. Diplomatic Solution. The PRC and Taiwan will solve their differences without having to resort to political, economic, or military coercion beyond what has already been displayed. This solution includes direct or multi-lateral negotiations between China and Taiwan.

H2. Limited Intervention. This hypothesis includes threats of political, economic, or military action against Taiwan in order to coerce Taiwanese politicians (or the Taiwanese people) into adopting pro-PRC positions. Examples of direct coercive actions by the PRC include naval or economic blockades, violating Taiwanese airspace, creating a military or economic "crisis," the bombardment or occupation of Taiwan's smaller islands (Green, the Pescadores, Kinman, and/or Matsu), and isolated acts of subversion or sabotage.

H3. Direct Attack. This hypothesis includes direct military action against the island of Taiwan and its 23 million inhabitants. Examples of Direct Attack include the firing of CSS-6 missiles, aerial/ naval bombardment, amphibious/airborne assaults, and cruise missile attacks against Taiwan. The objective of a Direct Attack is to either destroy or occupy Taiwan.

3. The Next Step. Once you’ve assessed each piece of evidence as it related to each of the three hypotheses, continue on to Step #4 (below). End Step #3

¬– ACH Step Four –
Reconsider the hypotheses and delete evidence and
arguments (not hypotheses) lacking diagnostic value
The exact wording of the hypotheses is critical to the conclusions one can draw from the analysis. By this point, you will have seen how the evidence breaks out under each hypothesis, and it will often be appropriate to reconsider or reword the hypotheses. Are there hypotheses that need to be added, or finer distinctions that need to be made in order to consider all the significant alternatives? If there is little or no evidence that helps distinguish between two hypotheses, should they be combined into one? Also reconsider the evidence. Is your thinking about which hypotheses most likely and least likely influenced by factors not included in the listing of evidence? If so, put them in. Delete unimportant evidence from your matrix.

1. Overview. Based on your analysis in Step #3, identify evidence you feel has no diagnostic value by changing the font color from BLACK to RED.

2. Determining Diagnostic Value. When assessing each piece of evidence for diagnostic value, please keep the following factors in mind:

a. Ambiguous terminology. Don't be swayed by reading into ambiguous terminology. In the above example, what does “progressing" really mean?

b. Timing. An event that happened a day, week, or month ago may be dismissed as a result of subsequent events. For example, “90 days prior to the elections, representatives from Ma Ying Jeon (KMT) were believed to be in the PRC conducting undisclosed negotiations.” Since the discovery of that meeting, several other events have occurred, thereby eliminating its diagnostic value.

c. If a piece of evidence does not apply to any of the three hypotheses, then it lacks diagnostic value.

d. If a piece of evidence applies to all three hypotheses, then it lacks diagnostic value.

3. Eliminating Evidence. If you end up deleting two or three pieces of evidence from a hypothesis, review the scenario again to determine if you've overlooked a piece of useful evidence that may ultimately influence your analysis. The goal is to identify and incorporate the strongest pieces of evidence for and against each hypothesis. If you limit yourself to the obvious or general pieces of evidence, your ability to effectively analyze the scenario will be jeopardized. Remember, the stronger the evidence, the stronger your analysis will be.

4. The Next Step. Continue on to Step #5.

End Step #4
(Continued on next page)

¬– ACH Step Five –
Draw tentative conclusions about the relative likelihood
of each hypothesis (not evidence)
Proceed by trying to disprove hypotheses rather than prove them. In Step #3, you worked across the matrix, focusing on a single item of evidence or argument and examining how it relates to each hypothesis. Now, work down the matrix, looking at each hypothesis as a whole. The
matrix format gives an overview of all the evidence for and against all the hypotheses, so that you can examine all the hypotheses together and have them compete against each other for your favor.
1. Exercise Limitations. Steps #5 and #6 are the most difficult to complete and have been slightly modified from the original ACH process contained in Psychology of Intelligence Analysis.
2. Overview. Having eliminated evidence lacking diagnosticity, each hypothesis must now be assessed in its entirety using the remaining evidence.
3. Instructions. Using the matrix work down the matrix (vertically) and assess the probability of each hypothesis occurring based on the remaining evidence.
a. Do not delete the evidence you assessed to have lacked “diagnosticty” (in Step #4) from your matrix–keep the text red.
b. Working down the matrix, carefully assess each of the three hypotheses using both the “for” and “against” evidence.
(1) Focus on the inconsistent evidence (-) as you are trying to disprove each hypothesis (this may initially be difficult as people are used to proving a hypothesis).
(2) Generally speaking, the hypothesis with the fewest amount of minuses (-) will be the MOST likely to occur. The hypothesis with the most minuses (-) will be the LEAST likely to occur.
(3) Generally speaking, your analysis will be based on a few "critical" factors rather than a "large mass of information."
c. Keep the following considerations in mind:
(1) The matrix should not dictate the conclusion to you; rather, it should accurately reflect your judgment of what is important and how these important factors relate to the probability of each hypothesis.
(2) Some evidence will carry more significance than other pieces of evidence.
(3) Degrees of inconsistency cannot be captured by a single notation such as a plus or minus.
(4) Some evidence may be consistent with more than one hypothesis.
(5) As future events unfold, new evidence will form causing the hypotheses to be strengthened or weakened. This exercise is designed to analyze events as they stand 20 days before the election.
d. Based on your analysis, rank each of the three hypotheses from least likely to occur to most likely to occur. You are not required to report your findings until next week when you complete Step #7.
4. The Next Step. Once you’ve (mentally) ranked each of the three hypotheses from least likely to occur to most likely to occur, proceed to Step #6.
End Step #5
(Continued on next page)

– ACH Step Six –
Identify “Linchpin” Evidence
Consider the consequences for your analysis if that evidence were wrong, misleading, or subject to a different interpretation. Go back and question the few linchpin assumptions or items of evidence driving the outcome of your analysis. Are there questionable assumptions that underlie your understanding and interpretation? Are there alternative explanations or interpretations? Could the evidence be incomplete and, therefore, misleading? If there is any concern at all about denial and deception, this is an appropriate place to consider that possibility. Note: when analysis turns out to be wrong, it is often because of key assumptions that went unchallenged and proved invalid.
1. Overview. Review the critical pieces of evidence (i.e. “linchpin” evidence) that drove your analysis and identify your underlying assumptions.
2. Instructions.
a. For each of the three hypotheses, identify the linchpin evidence by entering the word “linchpin” under the evidence number (see the example highlighted in yellow below). Note: to ensure single spacing, press the “shift” and “enter” at the same time.
b. For each piece of linchpin evidence identified, include a brief summary as to why you selected it (see the example below).
c. Some hypotheses may have two (or on rare occasions three) pieces of linchpin evidence.
d. It is possible for linchpin evidence to apply to more than one hypothesis. If this occurs, be sure to elaborate on this point in Step #7.
e. Students must identify a minimum of three pieces of linchpin evidence.

f. Mentally review each piece of linchpin evidence and questions the assumptions that drove your analysis.
(1) Are there any alternative explanations or interpretations for the evidence?
(2) Could the evidence be incomplete and possibly misleading?
(3) Could the evidence be part of a deception campaign?
(4) How accurate are the sources?
3. Submission. Upload your matrix with the linchpin identified into the week five assignments folder. You do not need to provide any additional information.
4. The Next Step. As soon as you receive feedback from the instructor, proceed to Steps #7 and #8. For Step #7, you’re going to be reporting your findings to include your hypotheses rankings (from Step #5) and your review of the linchpin evidence (from Step #6). Please don’t get discouraged if you are asked to resubmit portions of your work.
5. Remember. Not everyone gets ACH right the first time as you can always resubmit your work for full credit. It’s all part of the learning process.
End Step #6
6. Looking Ahead. Now that we’ve completed your analysis, the next step is to report your findings in a six-page paper (step #7) and develop a list of future indicators to serve as a roadmap to let you know if events are unfolding in the manner you assessed they would (step #8). After grading your papers, I’ll send out an email letting everyone know how the class did as whole (i.e. how many students selected diplomatic outcome, limited intervention, and direct attack). The results often vary from class to class so it will be interesting to see how your personal results compare with the class.
Looking forward to the seventh week, we’re going to take a close look at the pressures associated with small groups and organizations from both the civilian and military communities. These pressures are found in everyday life and are magnified when a crisis is unfoldeing. Pressures to conform, be accepted, and/or “to get it right” can be overwhelming at times–especially when you add in the political and military consequences associated with “getting it wrong.”
My hypothesis was as below:
ACH Step One: Identify Possible Scenario Outcomes (Hypotheses)
Number Hypothesis
Hypothesis #1 Continued mistrusts and friction between Taiwan and PRC causing both parties to treat each other with contempt despite alleged corporation.
Hypothesis #2 Taiwan’s allows PRC to rule the mainland China but they maintain their ideologies within some agreed territories.
Hypothesis #3 Taiwan holds successful elections, with Lee Teng hui as their president, declares independence and calls for global recognition as an independent country from PRC.
Hypothesis #4 PRC and Taiwan agree to merge, work together and become One China State with a power sharing deal.
Hypothesis #5 U.S uses other concealed means to prop up Taiwan, and back their efforts to declare supremacy against PRC.

Reading material.
The Chinese Civil War
The Chinese Civil War began in 1927 when a coalition government between the Nationalist Kuomintang (KMT) and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) was dissolved. Determined to eliminate the CCP as a political entity, Chiang Kai-shek launched a military offensive to place the country under KMT control. Chiang succeeded in bringing the eastern portion of China under his control and forced the communists led by Mao Tse Tung (right) to retreat into the Chinese interior.
War Against Japan
After years of meddling in Chinese affairs, Japan sent the Kwantung Army into Manchuria and established the puppet state of Manchukuo with Puyi (the last emperor of the Qing dynasty) as emperor in 1932. Realizing a war against Japan was inevitable, Chiang Kai-Shek (left) was forced to enter into a "ceasefire" with the Communists in 1936. Although the KMT and CCP agreed to fight the Japanese together, the KMT (by virtue of possessing the eastern most portions of China) were forced to fight the Japanese without any significant assistance from the CCP. Without having to mount any large scale attacks against the Japanese, the CCP used this time to solidify their holdings and expand their army.
Post War - WWII China
Following the Japanese surrender in 1945, the KMT began a futile attempt to reassert control over Manchuria; however, with their industrial infrastructure in shambles and popular support firmly on the side of the communists, the KMT struggled to regain their pre-war status. With massive amounts of assistance from the US, Chiang was able to occupy portions of Manchuria. In order to support a settlement negotiated by General George C. Marshall, both Chiang and Mao agreed to reduce the size of their armies by nearly 1.5 million men. Whereas Chiang discharged soldiers loyal to the KMT, Mao used the opportunity to purge political opponents. Supported by large stashes of captured Japanese equipment, the CCP spent 1945-46 preparing for the resumption of hostilities.
The Nationalist Defeat
Unable to secure a lasting cease fire, General Marshal departed China in February 1947. Immediately afterwards, the Chinese Civil War entered into its final phase as the US backed KMT and Soviet backed CCP resumed fighting. With the majority of their support coming from the middle and upper classes, the KMT was unable to garner enough rural support to halt the CCP’s steady advance.

When coupled with the faltering economy and widespread corruption by KMT leaders, the tide of the war turned against the KMT as the CCP quickly consolidated their rural gains and began assaulting KMT urban strongholds. By mid-1949, the Nationalist cities of Beijing and Nanjing fell to the CCP as they extended their control to the Northern and eastern parts of the country. While still pursuing Nationalist forces in southern China, Mao proclaimed the People's Republic of China (with Beijing as its capital) on October 1st 1949. In order to avoid defeat, Chiang and his 600,000 man army fled to the island of Taiwan, and in December 1949 proclaimed the Republic of China with Taipei as its capital.
Continued Hostilities
With North Korea's invasion of South Korea in 1950, the conflict between the two China's took on added significance when the US adopted a policy of "containing" the communist threat. With increasing amounts of US military aid, the PRC and Taiwan spent the next 20 years engaged in a series of skirmishes intended to destabilize the opposing governments. With the PRC lacking an amphibious capability and Taiwan unable to mount anything more than coastal raids, sporadic fighting between the two sides continued unabated. In 1955, the US established a formal commitment to defend Taiwan when Congress passed the Formosa Resolutions Act. Later that year, a negotiated settlement between the two sides was reached when the KMT agreed to withdraw from the Dachen and Nanchi islands while the PLA agreed to stop bombarding Taiwanese islands. Along with the commitment to defend Taiwan, the US began equipping the KMT with modern fighters, missiles and naval vessels.
PRC Recognition
Despite a series of efforts by several members of Congress to oppose the measure, in October 1971 the United Nations adopted Resolution 2758 calling for the PRC to be recognized as the legitimate government of China. In February of 1972, the US and PRC released the Shanghai Communiqué calling for both countries to work together in order to normalize relations. In the communiqué, the US agreed to support the "One-China Policy" acknowledging there is only one China (although not necessarily the PRC). In 1978, President Jimmy Carter announced the US was normalizing relations with the PRC and would sever formal relations with Taiwan. In response to President Carter's action, Congress passed the Taiwan Relations Act calling for the US to consider any effort to determine the future of Taiwan by other than peaceful means (including boycotts and embargoes) as a threat to the peace and security of the Pacific and of grave concern to the US and made formal provisions for providing Taiwan with weapons "of a defensive nature."
Current PRC - Taiwan Relations
Beginning in the 1990's, relations between the PRC and Taiwan improved with a few notable exceptions. In 1992, Taiwan’s President Lee Teng-hui indicated he would no longer challenge the right of the PRC to rule the mainland, thereby shifting the debate to which nation had legitimacy overt Taiwan. In an attempt to intimidate the Taiwanese people into voting against Lee Teng-hui (whom the PRC characterized as a candidate attempting to "divide the motherland"), the PRC fired several missiles inside of Taiwan's territorial waters during the 1996 Presidential elections. In order to prevent the crisis from escalating into a war, the US dispatched two carrier battle groups to Taiwan Straits as a show of resolve. As a reminder to Taiwan and the US, the PRC passed the Anti-Cessation Law formalizing their long standing policy to use "non-peaceful means" against the "Taiwan independence movement" should Taiwan declare their independence. Despite the tenuous situation regarding the status of Taiwan, the PRC and Taiwan have significantly increased economic and cultural ties as both nations' economies have experienced tremendous growth.

29 13:55 My addition information for step 2
ACH Step Two: Evidence For and Evidence Against Each Hypothesis
ACH Steps Three and Four: Assess Evidence for “Diagnosticity” and Eliminate Evidence
ACH Steps Five and Six: (5) Eliminate Hypotheses” and (6) Identify Linchpin Evidence
Hypothesis 
 Evidence
 (H1a) List three pieces of evidence indicating the crisis will be resolved diplomatically.
 Evidence #1
Continuous economic growth between PRC and Taiwan despite political differences.
 Evidence #2
Presdent Hu-Jintao and UN Secretary General hold talks 30 days before the election and discuss recent activities.
 Evidence #3
PRC calls for the United nations to intervene as a way of quelling tension between the two factions.
Hypothesis 
 Evidence
 (H1b) List three pieces of evidence indicating the crisis will not be resolved diplomatically.
 Evidence #1
Taiwan’s National Security Bureau uncovers plans to amplify tensions between them and PRC incase of a TSU win.
 Evidence #2
PRC conducts mobilization of air, land, and sea forces along near Taiwan borders 50 days before election.
 Evidence #3
Taiwan increases military level alertness 65 days before the election to counter PRC perceived interference.
Hypothesis 
 Evidence
 (H2a) List three pieces of evidence indicating the crisis will be resolved with limited intervention.
 Evidence #1
Footage of PLAAF bombers is captured conducting drills 45 days before election, meant to PASS a message against forces who intend to destabilize PRC.
 Evidence #2
Pentagon confirms that PRC agrees to limit mobilization of air, land and sea forces against Taiwan 50days before the elections.
 Evidence #3
increased communication between Whenzhou and Zhangzhou naval bases 55 days to election
Hypothesis 
 Evidence
 (H2b) List three pieces of evidence indicating the crisis will not be resolved by limited intervention.
Evidence #1
USPACOM reports that Fighter Regiment patrols within Taiwan have increased by 50% just 20 days before the election
 Evidence #2
PLAN and PLAAF receive orders to deploy to Nanjing 30days before the election.
 Evidence #3
Naval squadrons are ordered to prepare for extended operations.
Hypothesis 
 Evidence
 (H3a) List three pieces of evidence indicating the crisis will be resolved with a direct attack.
 Evidence #1
Amphibious assault vehicles are identified loading supplies at Whenzhou and Zhangzhou naval bases 20days before the elections.
 Evidence #2
PRC air and ground troops receive mobilization to Nanjing military district which is close to Taiwan 30days before election.
 Evidence #3
News from PLA newspapers report of PRC armed forces ready to attack anyone bent on undermining the communist party’s sovereign authority.
Hypothesis 
 Evidence
 (H3b) List three pieces of evidence indicating the crisis will not be resolved with a direct attack.
Political Solution
 Evidence #1
United Nation agrees to mediate on the crisis even as the United States vows to remain neutral on the crisis 25 days before the election.
 Evidence #2
Taiwan considers downgrading their military alertness with negotiations between PRC and Taiwan at an advanced stage 45 days before the election.
 Evidence #3
Continued good economic ties between Taiwan and PRC despite the ongoing conflict



H1 (Diplomatic Solution).

H2 (Limited Intervention)

H3 (Direct attack)

H1a E1 (Continuous economic growth between PRC and Taiwan despite political differences).

(Linchpin Evidence)
Economic growth between the countries signifies a relatively positive relationship

(Linchpin Evidence)
There may arise an aggression from one country to the next in form of preventing trade or threatening traders from either country.

(Linchpin Evidence)
There are no signs of extremely strained relationship between the two countries to warrant

H1a E2 (President Hu-Jintao and UN Secretary General hold talks 30 days before the election and discuss recent activities).

(Linchpin Evidence)
While there may have arisen some developments after the talks, the decision to hold these talks is still a positive move that indicates the possibility of holding a discussion between the two countries and reaching a consensus.

(Linchpin Evidence)
Holding of the talks does not translate to a consensus. Instead, the two groups may fail to reach a consensus and resort to threats and intimidations.

(Linchpin Evidence)
There is a possibility of one group launching an attack because the talks may have collapsed, or the election could lead to a hostile government ascending to power. Having such a radical government could lead to direct attack.

H1a E3 (PRC calls for the United nations to intervene as a way of quelling tension between the two factions).

(Linchpin Evidence)
While there may have arisen some developments after the talks, the decision to hold these talks is still a positive move that indicates the possibility of holding a discussion between the two countries and reaching a consensus.

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