The last several years of Defense spending have a seen a more than seven-fold increase in the amount of money being spent through other transaction agreements for technology development. And although the Navy has been a relative latecomer to OTAs compared to its sister services, the approach is taking off in a big way in the areas of information technology and cybersecurity.
In August, the Navy announced it was increasing the ceiling value for its Information Warfare Research Project OTA to $500 million after having exhausted its initial $100 million ceiling in just a little over a year-and-a-half. Meanwhile, last month, officials announced the project’s first three programs to have moved from prototypes to full-blown production systems.
“It’s been a very large success. We’ve been able to promote this, both internally and with our sponsors to identify requirements that fit our rapid prototyping construct, ultimately with the goal of getting things into the warfighters’ hands quicker than in other contract strategy approaches,” Kevin Charlow, the chairman of the IWRP Executive Steering Group and deputy executive director of Naval Information Warfare Center-Atlantic said in a recent interview for Federal News Network’s On DoD. “As we continue to identify new requirements and as the word gets out, and people get more comfortable using this type of vehicle, the available ceiling has been used up. So we’re pleased about that and we’re looking forward to the future.”
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