WASHINGTON — The Defense Department does not have a complete list of its space acquisition programs and cannot identify exactly how many people work on space acquisitions, says a new report by the Government Accountability Office.
These finding are problematic as the Pentagon seeks congressional approval to stand up a Space Force as a separate military branch, GAO says in a report released on Thursday. “Without complete and accurate data, DoD cannot assess gaps in the overall capabilities of the space acquisition workforce.”
Jon Ludwigson, GAO’s acting director for contracting and national security acquisitions delivered the report which was requested by Congress in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017.
Congress in recent years has continued to show a keen interest in the space acquisition workforce. The 2019 NDAA directed DoD to consider developing a dedicated workforce for space acquisitions. And one of the reasons lawmakers have advocated the establishment of a Space Force is that programs currently are dispersed and hard to track.
GAO suggests the Pentagon should have a better accounting of its space programs. “Collecting such data would also better position DoD to ensure that the appropriate space acquisition personnel are assigned to the new ...