A Case Study for Better Buying Power
June 12, 2012
Affordability is the top challenge facing the Department of Defense (DoD) today, and this challenge is amplified by the uncertain national economic and defense budget environments. Given this reality, it is not surprising that Acting Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics (USD(AT&L)) Frank Kendall has continued and reemphasized former USD(AT&L) Ashton Carter’s commitment to reduce defense system costs: “We will continue to refine and build upon [the Better Buying Power (BBP) Initiative]. We will continue the never-ending quest to control and reduce our costs while acquiring products and services that provide the highest possible value to our warfighters.”
Realigning and refocusing Information Analysis Center (IAC) capabilities and products on defense system affordability is an essential task for DoD and Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC) leadership going forward. This study by the CSIS Defense-Industrial Initiatives Group suggests that, though IACs are a value-added resource for the acquisition community, there are tenuous links between IAC activities and program milestone decision support and the BBP Initiative. Because scientific and technical information (STI) management is a key enabler for both the research and development (R&D) and acquisition communities, the collection and dissemination of STI is a fundamental prerequisite for well-designed and solidly performing R&D and acquisition programs. In fact, IAC customers have used IAC-supplied STI for multiple acquisitions and a variety of platforms.