The Atlantic Council Corporate Strategy Forum met on Tuesday, July 15, for discussion on “Defense Management and Industrial Challenges” with Arnold Punaro, chairman of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA), and Brett Lambert, a senior fellow at NDIA.
Today’s US defense industry is tethered to the Pentagon. Consequently, the stakes for industry are high in how the Department of Defense rebalances its programs and forces to accommodate an austerity-age budget. Initial indications suggest that the “tail” continues to grow even as the “tooth” shrinks at a fast pace. By most accounts, the Pentagon’s overhead costs have run amok, while at the same time the Army is planning for ground forces at their smallest size in decades, and the Air Force’s and Navy’s combat forces have steadily shrunk over the last twenty years. Against this backdrop of their primary customer in turmoil, companies in the business of defense are poised for change. Punaro and Lambert lent their expert opinions to the Forum to answer these and other questions.
The Forum convenes chief strategists of transatlantic companies in aerospace, defense, security, and government services for private roundtable conversation about issues that matter to the long-term health of these businesses.