Bending the Cost Curve

On Wednesday January 14, 2015, the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security welcomed The Hon. Deborah Lee James, Secretary of the US Air Force, for her speech entitled “Bending the Cost Curve.” This Defense-Industrial Policy Series event, cohosted with the National Defense Industrial Association, was moderated by Steven Grundman, the M.A. and George Lund Fellow in the Scowcroft Center.

According to the Secretary, “Bending the Cost Curve” includes doing three things: enhance interactions, enhance competition, and improve processes. This acquisition strategy is meant to reflect the Air Force’s focus on “strategic agility” and is meant to be a targeted initiative that can be accomplished despite budget pressures. As Secretary James said, “Bending the Cost Curve” is being implemented “so we can better understand how processes, procedures, and some of the choices we make can inadvertently contribute to raining costs, the stifling of innovations, and slow processes.

The Defense-Industrial Policy Series is a platform for senior government executives in defense and aerospace to address the public policies that shape these industries’ markets. By engaging the perspective of government leaders about issues at the interface of defense ministries and industries, the series aims to cultivate a constituency for practical solutions to these problems.