Section 809 Panel’s Work Is Far From Done

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Originally Published on This Site.

By Stew Magnuson

30 January 2019

After two years of work, the Section 809 Panel gathered in a hall at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce building on a cold, January day to present its third and final report, which summed up some 90 ways to improve the Defense Department’s acquisition system.

The commissioners spent the past 24 months interviewing past and current acquisition officials, think tank experts, consultants, industry leaders and organizations — including the National Defense Industrial Association — then talked amongst themselves to come up with some kind of consensus on recommendations.

Now what?

There have been many similar blue-ribbon panels in the past, all tasked with tackling the slow defense acquisition system. And this commission, like the others, had no authority to change anything.
What’s different now is a sense of urgency. The U.S. military feels the breath of China and Russia on its neck as they modernize their weapons and close technology gaps with the United States.

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