IR Convening Highlight - Defense Industrial Base Plenary

By: Mereb Hagos, Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness

The IR Bulletin continues our series of blog posts on the 2019 Learning Community Convening. These blog posts provide highlights for those who weren't able to attend, and reminders for those who were.

On the first day of the Learning Community Convening, Robert Gold of the Technology and Manufacturing Industrial Base in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering and Dr. Christine Michienzi of the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment at the Department of Defense presented on the state of the defense industrial base.

Mr. Gold began the presentation with an overview of the role of the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering and the 2018 National Defense Strategy (NDS). From the technology focus areas identified in the 2018 NDS, the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering has appointed an Assistant Director for each of the technology focus areas which includes: Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning, Autonomy, Biotechnology, Cyber, Directed Energy, Fully Networked Command, Control, and Communication, Hypersonics, Microelectronics, Quantum Science, and Space.

To ensure that the United States maintains superior military capabilities, each of the technology areas must make certain that:

Dr. Michienzi presented on the Executive Order 13806 on Assessing and Strengthening the Manufacturing and Defense Industrial Base and Supply Chain Resiliency of the United States. The Executive Order requires an assessment of the United States manufacturing capacity, defense industrial base, and supply chain resiliency as well as the development of the policy, regulatory, legislative, and investment recommendations to strengthen those activities. The Interagency Task Force, through the working groups of 16 sectors, identified macro forces that cause industrial base risks across sectors:

The Interagency Task Force Working Groups are leading the implementation of recommendations, conducting select follow-on analysis to assess resiliency of the manufacturing and defense industrial base, and exploring next generation technologies necessary for future threats (FY19 NDAA, Section 1793). The Task Force will report progress in the Annual Industrial Capabilities Report to Congress.