Competition In Defense Acquisitions
By: Jacques Gansler, William Lucyshyn, Michael Arendt
Competition is a driving force in the U.S. economy and a vital component of efficiency and improved market performance in both the public and private sectors. It has been widely held among economists that competition provides incentives to produce better products faster, at lower costs, and with better quality, while focusing more attention on customer needs. Congress has recognized the benefits of competition and has mandated its use with the Competition in Contracting Act of 1984. From a defense perspective, the mandate is simply stated—competition is very beneficial; maximize its use.
In light of the current financial climate in Washington, it is likely there will be an increased pressure to find innovative strategies to maximize the effectiveness and efficiency of DoD’s investments in order to meet all operational requirements, as well as modernization needs. Competition within the defense market is not only necessary to efficiently meet day-to-day military needs, but is also the lynchpin for successful military modernization—as a means for spurring innovation of transformational technologies and for bringing the best weapons to the battlefield quickly and affordably.