Accession Number:



Programs Vs. Resources: Some Options for the Navy

Descriptive Note:

Journal article

Corporate Author:


Personal Author(s):

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



The Navy faces a challenge in funding various program goals within a budget that is expected to experience little or no real growth. This challenge will be compounded if the change in the nations projected budget and debt situation since the 2008 financial crisis leads to a real decline in budget. The total number of ships in the Navy is to be bolstered over the next decade by the entry into service of substantial numbers of relatively inexpensive Littoral Combat Ships LCSs and Joint High Speed Vessels JHSVs. In addition, the unit capability of Navy ships, aircraft, and other systems will increase in coming years as a result of new platforms and technologies. If, however, the Navys budget does not increase in real terms, the Navy faces a decline in ship and aircraft numbers that would offset some of the gains realized in unit capability. The resulting fleet could have capabilities for performing various missions but lack the capacity for performing those missions simultaneously in all desired geographic areas. If Navy budget pressures are compounded by a real decline in the DoD budget, policy makers could face difficult choices to fund programs for some kinds of Navy capabilities but not others. If so, the resulting fleet could have gaps in capability as well as capacity. These developments could occur at a time when the United States faces various international security challenges, including a modernized Chinese military capable of acting as a maritime antiaccess force and influencing events in the Pacific. Although the Navy forms only a part of the U.S. military, a Navy with insufficient ability to maintain desired levels of forward-deployed presence and engagement, to respond to contingencies and contain crises, or to conduct combat operations of certain kinds could lead to a situation in which policymakers need to prioritize key U.S. interests and goals and reconsider the national strategy for defending those interests and pursuing those goals.

Subject Categories:

  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Marine Engineering
  • Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies

Distribution Statement: