Human-Centered Design for Global Situational Awareness Event

17 February – June 2021

Submissions Closed 17 December 2020 11:59 PM ET



SOFWERX, in collaboration with USSOCOM PEO-SOF Digital Applications (PEO-SDA), is seeking visionary innovation in the design of user experience with transformational decision support. Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) will contribute to technology roadmap development, experimentation, and Artificial Intelligence (AI)-enabled capabilities to unify the SOF enterprise via a Common Operational Picture (COP) providing global situational awareness. The COP augments and enhances decision making through user interaction with uniquely SOF data and architecture that support Special Operations’ core activities and globally deployed footprint.

Why You Should Participate
USSOCOM seeks digital transformation to reset decision support systems to capture complexities of joint all-domain operations and exponential growth of data. Researchers at Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) have said the success of multi-domain operations lies in the hands of various users who must work together efficiently and effectively to plan and execute their missions, creating a challenge that is uniquely human-centered. Optimizing SOF user experience with tools for global situational awareness provides an opening for injecting disruptive technology and accelerating capabilities for joint solutions. Selected individuals will analyze and advise the needs of SOF and future technology investments. This is a compelling opportunity for experts in user experience, human factors, and operational innovation at a global scale.

USSOCOM will select five (5) SMEs to contribute during dynamic engagements with the SOF community, Industry, Academia, and Service Labs.
Individual contributors will participate in three (3), one-week events during the first half of 2021. After each event, SMEs will provide a brief report with recommendations for optimizing user experience with emerging capabilities. The second report should include a future concept for human-centered design based on SOF needs and technology roadmap for the COP. SMEs will brief their concepts during the final event. The following expertise is desired for the multi-disciplinary focus areas:

  • UX-Oriented Digital Transformation
  • SOF Decision Environment / Decision Modeling
  • Visual Analytics & Information Visualization
  • Haptic Technologies
  • Artificial Neural Networks
  • Natural Language Processing
  • Joint All-Domain Command & Control
  • Modular Open Systems Approach

Event Timeline
Completed Phase 1 – 16 November 2020 to 17 December 2020 Submissions Open: Interested Subject Matter Experts must submit their Curriculum Vitae (CV) per the instructions below. Submissions will be assessed by USSOCOM based on operational capability needs and technical qualifications.
A total $18K stipend is available for each selected participant* per below:

  • To receive the full $18K stipend, participants are required to contribute significant technical expertise during all three (3) events.
  • A $6K stipend will be distributed in three (3) increments upon receipt of a report within one week following each event.

*Government personnel who are selected as Subject Matter Experts will not be paid a stipend, but will be reimbursed for their travel via existing USSOCOM mechanisms through PEO-SDA.

Phase 2 – 17 December 2020 to 07 January 2021 SME Downselect: Government Stakeholders will downselect participants to attend the event. Selected participants will be notified via e-mail o/a 07 January.

Completed Phase 3 – 17 February 2021 to June 2021 Human-Centered Design for Global Situational Awareness Event: Selected participants will collaborate and ideate with fellow SMEs, the USSOCOM Team, and SOF Operators on the focus areas above. Participation will likely be virtual with some potential travel to Tampa or other sites as needed (and COVID-19 situation permitting). If selected, participants will attend (virtually or in person) three (3) events in the first half of calendar year 2021. The duration and timing of these events will be coordinated once the final participants are selected. Please see the notional calendar below and note it is subject to change.

Notional Timeline
17 Feb 2021 –  Kickoff Meeting
Feb/Mar 2021 – Technology Roadmap Collaboration Event

Apr/May 2021 – Interactive Engagement with SOF End Users
June 2021 – Future Concepts for Unified SOF COP

Note: Final dates and agenda will be provided one month prior to each event.

For event-related questions, please contact Kinsey Crim,