DVIDS – News – Acquisition Leaders Focus on Interdisciplinary Research at 19th Annual NPS Symposium

The Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) Acquisition Research Program (ARP) and the Naval Warfare Studies Institute (NWSI) hosted the 19th Annual Acquisition Research Symposium May 11-12. The annual symposium was again hosted virtually by NPS with the goal of opening the discussion on the future of acquisition to the widest possible audience, including defense and industry leaders, academics and of course NPS students, all under the theme “Creating Synergy for Informed Change.

The event featured two speakers who are at the forefront of acquisition for the United States: The Honorable Andrew Hunter, Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, and Mr. Tommy Ross, Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition, Director of Navy Acquisitions.

Hunter kicked off the event, praising the symposium as “the premier forum for understanding, discussing and planning acquisition research and for exchanging ideas about acquisition.” Hunter has presented research at several previous symposia in his previous role as Director of the Defense Industrial Initiatives Group at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Hunter’s remarks identified the Air Force’s acquisition priorities, including the need to divest older systems to invest in new capabilities. He also walked through Secretary Frank Kendall’s Seven Operational Imperatives, which drive the Air Force’s acquisition system and are worked on in conjunction with Air Force and Space Force service chiefs.

Ross chose this event for his first official speech in his new role as Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development, and Acquisition. His comments and conversation made it clear how his job as Chief of Staff to the Secretary of the Navy gave him an overview of Navy capabilities and priorities and how they should be applied to acquisition researchers.
In addition to key points of strategic direction from the Secretary of the Navy, Ross spoke to the call from Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday at “Get Real, Get Better”. Following this mandate, “our acquisition professionals at all levels must constantly self-assess their needs. Where do we have obstacles? Where do we have barriers that we need to overcome? Where can we do better? They need to close performance gaps and apply more technical rigor throughout the acquisition lifecycle of their programs.
The event hosted over 750 attendees across 26 engaging panel discussions covering everything from “Building and Structuring the Fleet” to “Adaptive Acquisition Framework: How It Works”. In addition, nearly 60 academic papers were submitted by DOD-affiliated institutions and civilian institutions such as Purdue and Carnegie Mellon, among others.

“Defense acquisition is a critical enabler in bringing capabilities across the finish line to the warfighter, and this symposium is a key part of improving that process,” the Vice Admiral told the retirement of David Lewis, president of the acquisition of NPS. “It brings together academics, practitioners and operational staff who are innovative thought leaders and who have practical experience to reflect on the difficult problems we face and collaboratively discuss solutions that promote both the search for acquisition and the development of future acquisition leaders.”

ARP was established in 2003 to provide a platform for innovation and problem solving in the ever-changing world of DOD acquisition and supply. It provides the currency for the strategies and analytical efficiency needed to deliver capabilities to American fighters.
“Our ultimate goal is always to encourage conversation,” said Michelle Johnson, communications manager for ARP. “And one of the things that this symposium is really unique in is bringing together a powerhouse of superstars.

“Researchers from different backgrounds and with different areas of expertise participate in our individual panels, which are chaired by general and flag officers or their equivalent who can speak to the operational importance of this research,” Johnson continued. “From unmanned systems to artificial intelligence panel to shipbuilding, these discussions have relevance and benefit for all involved.”

For more information on the 19th Annual Acquisition Research Symposium, visit the ARP website.

Date taken: 06.06.2022
Date posted: 06.06.2022 16:48
Story ID: 422296

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