While these terms are useful in informal discussions

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Unformatted text preview: on-going risk issues and future uncertainties. As such, it is a natural part of concurrent engineering. The RMP should be updated throughout the project life cycle. 4.6.1 Types of Risks There are several ways to describe the various types of risk a project manager/system engineer faces. Traditionally, project managers and system engineers have attempted to divide risks into three or four broad categories — namely, cost, schedule, technical, and, sometimes, safety (and/or hazard) risks. More recently, others have entered the lexicon, including the categories of organizational, management, acquisition, supportability, political, and programmatic risks. These newer categories reflect NASA Systems Engineering Handbook Management Issues in Systems Engineering the expanded set of concerns of project managers and system engineers who must operate in the current NASA environment. Some of these newer categories also represent supersets of other categories. For example, the Defense Systems Management College (DSMC) Systems Engineering Management Guide wraps "funding, schedule, contract relations, and political risks" into the broader category of programmatic risks. While these terms are useful in informal discussions, there appears to be no formal taxonomy free of ambiguities. One reason, mentioned above, is that often one type of risk can be exchanged for another. A second reason is that some of these categories move together, as for example, cost risk and political risk (e.g., the risk of project cancellation). Another way some have categorized risk is by the degree of mathematical predictability in its underlying uncertainty. The distinction has been made between an uncertainty that has a known probability distribution, with known or estimated parameters, and one in which the underlying probability distribution is either not known, or its parameters cannot be objectively quantified. An example of the first kind of uncertainty occurs in the unpredictability of the spares upmass requirement for alternative Space Station Alpha designs. While the requirement is stochastic in any particular logistics c...
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