Category Archives: ARJ 62 | April 2012

ARJ 62 | April 2012

From the Chairman and Executive Editor

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Dr. Larrie D. Ferreiro, Executive Editor, Defense ARJ

Chairman Larrie FerreiroThis issue is devoted to the annual Hirsch Research Paper Competition sponsored by our partner organization, the Defense Acquisition University Alumni Association (DAUAA, For 2012, the competition was entitled “Doing More Without More: Government and Industry Imperatives for Achieving Acquisition Efficiencies.” Sharp-eyed readers will note that “do more with more” was the direction given to defense acquisition professionals in 2010 by Dr. Ashton Carter, then-Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, as he unveiled the department’s Better Buying Power Initiatives (BBPI).1

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Enhancing Cost Realism through Risk-Driven Contracting: Designing Incentive Fees Based on Probabilistic Cost Estimates

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Authors: Maj Sean P. Dorey, USAF, Josef Oehmen, and Ricardo Valerdi

A risk-driven contract structure is proposed to enhance the cost realism of competitive proposals for the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) phase of the acquisition life cycle. The authors employ an economic theory framework to discuss how cost-plus contracts typically used during this phase have inadvertently reinforced the sources of contractor and government optimism bias. By mapping probabilistic cost estimates to profit distributions, risk-driven contracts offer a structured method to expose contractors to more cost risk during EMD. Holding contractors accountable for their cost estimates and cost performance should enhance the realism of cost proposals, limit the government’s ability to commit to too many programs, and reduce the cost growth that continues to plague the defense acquisition system.

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Managing Life-Cycle Information of Aircraft Components

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Authors: Geraldo Ferrer and Aruna U. Apte

When an aircraft component needs replacement of a serially controlled item, a maintenance officer in the U.S. Navy uses the Scheduled Removal Component (SRC) card to confirm the component’s life cycle, to verify that the part is ready-for-issue, and to verify how many flight-hours it still has left. Unfortunately, replacement components are often missing the SRC cards. Further, when the cards are received simultaneously with the aircraft component requiring replacement, their encoded data are unreliable, which then precludes the part from being immediately installed. In this article, the authors analyze the impact of current paper-based life-cycle management of serially controlled parts, and investigate item-unique identification and radio-frequency identification technologies as alternative ways of tracking these parts to increase operational availability.

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RAH-66 Comanche–The Self-Inflicted Termination: Exploring the Dynamics of Change in Weapons Procurement

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Author: Julien Demotes-Mainard

An intriguing question in weapons acquisition is why some weapons programs—initially designated Major Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAP)—collapse after a long development process, resulting in wasted money and expertise. A salient illustration is the RAH-66 Comanche stealth helicopter. For 20 years, the Army designated the RAH-66 an MDAP. Yet, in 2004 the Army decided that the RAH-66 was no longer affordable. What changes led the Service to reverse its position? This study shows that despite the explicit Army posture favoring the program, the Comanche had in fact suffered from an implicit and progressive decrease in support within the Service.

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Supply Chain Management & Strategic Acquisition Course Research Paper: The Case for Professional Pay in the Army Acquisition Corps

Author: COL John Lemodes, USA

This article assesses the opinions of Army Acquisition Workforce members who will serve in or are competing for program manager/command, or other leadership positions within the Army Acquisition Corps (AAC) on the subject of professional pay. A survey by the author determined: (a) whether professional pay would reduce loss of Army officers at the LTC/20-year point, with a lesser emphasis on COL/26-year point; (b) whether it would incentivize career civilians to compete for board select product/program management positions; and (c) whether it would it help keep both labor pools in the AAC past retirement eligibility. The author concludes that professional pay is an attractive incentive to further professionalize the AAC, and also formalize its professionalization throughout the Army.

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Rearming for the Cold War, 1945-1960

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rearming-the-cold-war-bookAuthor(s):  Elliott V. Converse III

Publisher: Historical Office, Office of the Secretary of Defense

Copyright Date: 2012

Available Online:

Hard/Softcover:  Hardcover, 781 pages

Reviewed by: Dr. Roy Wood, Dean, Defense Systems Management College, DAU

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