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Budgets | Industry & Trends | Issues - Political | Leadership & People | Lobbying | Policy - Procurement | Transformation | USA

U.S. Senate Hearings on Defense Acquisition Reform

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DID has covered the defense procurement spiral and tendency of the US Defense Department to begin more programs than its budget can afford, as well as bi-partisan legislative concern at rising weapons costs, efforts at organizational defense transformation, and acquisition reform efforts. Acting Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England and others recently testified on this subject before the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee. England told the committee that there’s no quick solution to overhauling the defense acquisition system to make it more responsive to warfighter needs and taxpayer interests – “just hard work.” Having said that, the testimony did highlight a couple of key initiatives underway. The AFIS article notes that: “For the first time, the Quadrennial Defense Review, due to Congress in February, will address not only military capabilities, but also the business practices and acquisition processes required to achieve them…” This effort even links into a subject DID has covered before: the Defense Acquisition Performance Assessment (DAPA), a top-to-bottom review of DoD’s acquisition programs that England ordered in July 2005. Why, despite decades of study and reforms, does the USA’s acquisition system still suffers from widespread perceptions that weapons systems cost too much and take too long to develop? […]

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