The Department of Defense (DoD) is an inherently conservative organization for good reasons. But with a clear understanding that today’s mission demands innovation, the DoD has taken major strides in becoming more agile. From the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) and its efforts to build partnerships with private sector organizations to its investments in software factories, the changes are tangible. In today’s roundup, we look at how agile development practices are reshaping the DoD in the never-ending quest to protect US national interests at home and abroad.
DoD Awards Contract for the Internet in Space
Space – the final frontier – will soon be Internet enabled courtesy of a new contract award by the DIU. The Defense Innovation Unit in partnership with Space Force, the Space Warfighting Analysis Center and the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Space Vehicles Directorate are seeking to develop an “interoperable “hybrid space architecture”—or HSA—that will allow for the secure flow of data across diverse communications networks.”
You can read more about the project and the new contract award here.
Agile Development is Central to DoD Success
With their mission to protect the nation’s security and national interests regardless of the domain, the Department of Defense has always, by necessity, been regulations-driven organization. While these regulations play an integral role in preserving the security and integrity of the mission, Michael C. Masten, Vice President of Modernization and Innovation Services at Chenega Systems understands that stringent governance can also kill innovation. In this new video, Masten explains how the DoD can overcome what he calls the “innovation valley of death.”
Is the Pacific Northwest the Next Defense Innovation Hub?
With bases around the world, the Department of Defense has always been a geographically dispersed organization. However, in terms of core research and development the National Capital Region – Washington, DC, Northern Virginia, and Maryland – has always been the locus of operations with the Pentagon and an abundance of defense contractors.
It would seem that the ‘other Washington’ – Washington State – is making a play to become the next hub for defense innovation. With companies the caliber of Boeing, Amazon, and Microsoft and a rich startup culture in robotics, AI, and radar, the investment dollars are flowing into the region.
You can learn more about the innovative programs being developed by the Department of Defense in the ‘other Washington’ here.