The International Space Station (ISS) Program at NASA’s Johnson Space Center commissioned RTI International to develop a system for identifying, tracking, and depicting the value of the results of research and development activities conducted aboard or for the ISS. The ISS is a unique scientific and technical asset, serving as the only platform for performing human-supervised experiments in microgravity and for generating knowledge and technology for longer-term human spaceflight. As with other major user facilities, however, the near-term outputs from ISS R&D—primarily scientific journal articles, patents, and datasets—do not always include specific acknowledgement of the ISS as an input to that work. To explain the value of the ISS to its stakeholders, NASA needs to find those outputs in a systematic and reliable manner, and then provide a way of explaining how those outputs offer evidence of the value generated by the ISS. In this paper, we explain (1) the different aspects of “value” generated by the ISS, (2) the methods developed to identify and analyze these three types of R&D output, and (3) novel indicators developed to provide a graphical representation of different perspectives on the scientific and technical value of ISS R&D activities.
A value assessment engine for the international space station program
Alexander, J. M., Anderson, B. J., Hilscher, R., Sykes, A., & Witsil, A. (2019). A value assessment engine for the international space station program. In Proceeedings of thh 2019 IEEE Technology & Engineering Management Society Conference (pp. 113-119). IEEE. https://doi.org/10.1109/TEMSCON.2019.8813754