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The Nov-Dec 2020 issue of Defense Acquisition Magazine contains an interesting article by Stephen Speciale and Diane Sidebottom on a little-used acquisition authority called "Procurement for Experimental Purposes" (PEP). The article, "The Next Little-Known Flexible Acquisition Authority," labels PEP a "companion authority" to Other Transactions (OTs). It was authorized by Congress in FY94 (10 U.S.C. Section 2373) alongside the authorization for OTs for Prototypes (the old "Section 845" authority, I believe). However, its existence is not as well-known as OTs, in some part because its use is not as lowly and widely delegated by OSD. Also, the article states that its use is limited to nine categories.
"The Secretary of Defense and the Secretaries of the military departments may each buy ordnance, signal, chemical activity, transportation, energy, medical, space-flight, telecommunications, and aeronautical supplies, including parts, accessories, and designs thereof, that the Secretary of Defense or the Secretary concerned considers necessary for experimental or test purposes in the development of the best supplies that are needed for the national defense."
If any of you have used the PEP authority, please respond to this post and convey your experience with it.
On 21 Oct 20, DTIC published a clarification regarding the new Federal Marking Framework for Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI). The DTIC bulletin can be accessed at:
The bulletin contains a link to the 21-page training guide on CUI Markings dated 3 Sep 20. It also contains a reference to DoDI 5230.24, Distribution Statements on Technical Documents, incorporating Change 3 dated 15 Oct 18. I've provided a link to that instruction in this post that was not in the DTIC bulletin. The bulletin also contains a link to find out more about submitting documents to DTIC.
The Navy is opening its first overseas "tech bridge" location in London, UK, according to an Inside Defense article published 21 Oct 20. See article at:
Any thoughts from anyone on this? Seems like an AFWERX or DIU kind of effort to me.
On 15 Oct 20, the White House published an 18-page document titled "National Strategy for Critical and Emerging Technologies" dated October 2020. A White House press release accompanied the document and the Air Force Association posted an article about it, too. The document references the 2017 National Security Strategy as the visionary foundation upon which this new strategy is built..
For the purposes of this strategy, critical and emerging technologies (C&ET) are defined as "those technologies that have been identified and assessed by the National Security Council (NSC) to be criticalm, or to potentially become critical, to the United States' national security advantage, including military, intelligence, and economic advantages."
The strategy discusses a three-fold approach to prioritize its way-ahead. For the highest priority technology areas, the U.S. will lead. The U.S. will remain a technology peer with its allies and partners in other high-priority technology areas. For some emerging technologies that are globally diffuse or are too early in the R&D phase to have clearly identified implications for U.S. national security, a risk management approach will be applied. It mentions the four risk mitigation methods of avoid, reduce, accept, or transfer.
The strategy contains two "pillars of success" with priority actions stated for each pillar. However, the strategy contains no details on any of the priority actions; it only lists them, in no particular order, for each pillar. A lone annex contains the 20 U.S. Government Critical and Emerging Technologies List but, again, there are no details on these technologies in the strategy.
Pillar I: Promote the National Security Innovation Base (NSIB). There are 13 priority actions for this pillar, not listed here for brevity.
Pillar II: Protect Technology Advantage. There are 9 priority actions for this pillar, not listed here for brevity. Most, if not all, can be found in the recent DoDI 5000.83, "Technology and Program Protection to Maintain Technological Advantage" published 20 Jul 20.
The 20 technologies in the C&ET list in the annex are arranged alphabetically. Many of these are reflected in the DoD Communities of Interest (CoIs) [see the CoIs Tier 1 Taxonomy and Descriptions for more info] and DoD Modernization Priorities [the DTIC R&E Gateway Techipedia has further info on these at the CUI level]. Many of these technologies are also mentioned in the annual joint OSTP/OMB memo "Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Administration Research and Development Budget Priorities and Cross-cuting Actions" dated 14 Aug 20.
On 28 Sep 20, the DSB cleared for public release a 16-page executive summary for "21st Centure Multi-Domain Effects" task force report dated September 2020. It is directed related to the term multi-domain operations (MDO).
The summary contains 12 recommendations which, for brevity, will only be listed here by their short titles.
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