Major defense acquisition programs have become more complex across a number of dimensions, including technology, organization, and environment. This paper explores how that increased complexity affects competition and innovation in the context of defense acquisition. Complexity is one of many factors that affect the use of competition and innovation. It has contributed to changes in the nature of systems DoD buys, changes in defense industry structure, how competition is applied at the program level, and the drivers of innovation. Acquisition officials should consider these impacts when applying competition in an increasingly complex acquisition environment, and their implications for innovation.
Reprinted with permission from Organizing for a Complex World: Developing Tomorrow's Defense and Net-Centric Systems, edited by Guy Ben-Ari and Pierre A. Chao, pp. 31-49. Copyright © 2009 Center for Strategic and International Studies.