Tag Archives: Steve Hutchison

Test and Evaluation Myths and Misconceptions


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Author: Steve Hutchison, Ph.D.

Test and Evaluation (T&E) is essential to successful system acquisition. For the last 43 years, the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) has included various formations providing T&E oversight. Interested readers can review some of the history in the articles “The Original DT&E” and “What Happened to DT&E?” in the January–February 2014 and March–April 2014 issues, respectively, of the Defense AT&L magazine. Having been witness to just over a third of this history, I thought I would share some of the great myths and misconceptions about T&E that I have observed over the years. If we can dispel some of these myths, perhaps we can reduce the tension between testers and developers and get on with helping acquisition programs deliver capabilities more effectively and efficiently. After all, the Department of Defense (DoD) is not investing the nation’s resources for programs to fail—our job as testers is to help programs succeed.

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What Happened to DT&E?


To print a PDF copy of this article, click here.

Author: Steve Hutchison, Ph.D.

The office now responsible for overseeing developmental test and evaluation (DT&E) was created four decades ago to oversee all test and evaluation (T&E) in the Department of Defense (DoD). In the January–February 2014 issue of Defense AT&L magazine, I described David Packard’s response to the Blue Ribbon Defense Panel in shaping the original office in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) responsible for T&E oversight. In this article, I describe the DoD’s efforts over the past 40 years to shape T&E oversight organizations to help improve acquisition outcomes. Ultimately, this article is intended to provoke a rethinking of how we, as testers and as members of the acquisition community, can better help programs provide enhanced capabilities to our warfighters in an effective and timely manner. If that is not our top priority, then I think we may be in the wrong business.

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