Modeling Operational Robustness and Resiliency with High-Level Petri Nets

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Military operations are highly complex workflow systems that require careful planning and execution. The interactive complexity and tight coupling between people and technological systems has been increasing in military operations, which leads to both improved efficiency and a greater vulnerability to mission accomplishment due to attack or system failure. Although the ability to resist and recover from failure is important to many systems and processes, the robustness and resiliency of workflow management systems has received little attention in literature. The authors propose a novel workflow modeling framework using high-level Petri nets (PNs). The proposed framework is capable of both modeling structure and providing a wide range of qualitative and quantitative analysis. The concepts of self-protecting and self-healing systems are captured by the robustness and resiliency measures proposed in this study. The proposed measures are plotted in a Cartesian coordinate system; a classification scheme with four quadrants (i.e., possession, preservation, restoration, and devastation) is proposed to show the state of the system in terms of robustness and resiliency. The authors introduce an overall sustainability index for the system based on the theory of displaced ideals. The application of the methodology in the evaluation of an air tasking order generation system at the United States Air Force is demonstrated.




Tavana, M., Busch, T.E. and Davis, E.L. (2011) ‘Modeling Operational Robustness and Resiliency with High-level Petri Nets,’ International Journal of Knowledge-Based Organizations, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp. 17-38.