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Department of Defense Policies and Procedures for the Acquisition of Information Technology

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Final rept.

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Information technology IT offers immense capability in terms of agility, flexibility, responsiveness, and effectiveness. It enables nearly all of our military combat capability and has become a necessary element of our most critical warfare systems. However, there is growing concern within Congress and among Department of Defense DOD leadership that the nations military advantage may be eroding. The deliberate process through which weapon systems and information technology are acquired by DOD cannot keep pace with the speed at which new capabilities are being introduced in todays information age- and the speed with which potential adversaries can procure, adapt, and employ those same capabilities against the United States. Certainly, barriers that preclude transformation of the U.S. national security apparatus to meet the challenges of a new strategic era are of particular concern. Nearly a decade ago the Department established a vision for the architecture and structure for information system management - a vision that is still evolving. However, it is well known that acquisition has not been well managed for these systems within this enterprise level construct, and the result has not served todays leaders and soldiers well. In fact it hinders the war fighters ability to use information technology to its fullest potential for situation awareness, collaboration, and rapid decision-making. The resulting operational impact is profound. Yet despite the current situation, successful programs exist that comprise largely or exclusively of information technologies or are deeply dependent on information technology in execution. The question then arises as to whether there are elements common to the acquisition of these successful programs that would improve DODs ability to field advantageous information technology in a timely and cost-effective manner.

Subject Categories:

  • Administration and Management
  • Government and Political Science
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

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