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Shaping and Integrating the Next Military: Organization Options for Defense Acquisition and Technology

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Despite many changes in the international security environment and in the worlds both of technology and management, DoD Department of Defense acquisition and technology organization remains structurally similar to where it was a decade ago. In particular, the structure of the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Technology AT has not changed in a way that parallels new DoD initiatives in such areas as greater use of commercial technology, lean production, outsourcing, and joint warfare. This report offers several options for AT to restructure itself for the new world of defense management. Our guiding principal in presenting these options is that structure should match strategy. We use strategy to mean approaches to technology, implementation of national security policy, and a meaningful application of the widely accepted principle of civilian control. AT plays many important roles overseeing acquisition, providing advice to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary, and setting policy for the current military. These activities consume the majority of the time and intellectual effort of the current AT staff. However, this existing structure leaves little time for long-term thinking about the emerging roles, functions, and characteristics of the next military and the military after next. We believe that shaping future forces should be one of AT is primary objectives. Because of its civilian leadership and rank in OSD, AT is in a strategic position to integrate service programs, along with many new areas of activity, such as commercial and military technologies.

Subject Categories:

  • Administration and Management
  • Information Science
  • Military Forces and Organizations
  • Military Intelligence

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