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This paper explores development and comparative assessment of strategies to assist the reliability engineer in a competitive program scenario. The idea of using a methodology such as game theory has numerous beneficial aspects. At the very highest level, it brings structure to the competitive approach, which for the most part, is usually a process that is influenced by a variety of unstructured variants. Under some circumstances, program selection and funding may be driven by prevailing personality, favoritism, homage, culture, decree, etc. Under other circumstances the drivers may be lack of understanding, ignorance, flawed data, etc. So the ability to be able to build a compelling persuasive argument for the adoption of reliability initiatives in the face of competitive program selection presents itself as an attractive option. Of course this is a single example, and we are not limited in the application of game theory. The more subtle intent of this paper is to introduce the topic as a descriptive theory rather than a prescriptive theory. In this sense, the thought provoking aspect of game theory provides a rigorous analysis of the political, historical, psychological and psychopathological intricacies that are inherent in any and all conflicts.
Date of Conference: 22-25 Jan. 2007