The Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security and its Forward Defense program hosted the public launch of the Commission on Defense Innovation Adoption’s Interim Report on Wednesday, April 12, 2023 from 1:15 to 3:15 p.m. ET via Zoom. This event will featured the launch of a report which details the Commission’s key findings and recommendations for accelerating the US Department of Defense’s (DoD) ability to adopt cutting-edge technology from the commercial and defense sectors and deliver capabilities to the warfighter at speed and scale.
The event will featured keynote remarks by Commission Co-chairs former Secretary of Defense Dr. Mark T. Esper and former Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James. The event included a presentation of the Interim Report’s findings, as well as its recommendations for Congress and the DoD.
The United States does not have an innovation problem it has an innovation adoption problem. While the nation leads in many emerging technologies relevant to defense and security—from artificial intelligence and directed energy, to autonomous vehicles and quantum information technology—the DoD faces a number of impediments to identifying, adopting, integrating, and fielding these technologies into military applications. These barriers are present in both the legislative process and DoD’s internal bureaucracy.
The Atlantic Council’s Commission on Defense Innovation Adoption has spent the last eight months studying these challenges and is now releasing its recommendations for overcoming them. The interim report advances ten policy recommendations for Congress and the Pentagon, focusing on the three key areas of reforming acquisition; overcoming barriers to innovation; and revising specific Planning, Programming, Budgeting, and Execution (PPBE) processes. The Biden administration’s National Security Strategy has deemed the next ten years as a “decisive decade” where the United States must maintain a credible deterrent to prevent military action by its adversaries. Congress and the DoD must seize this opportunity to enact near-term changes that will help get key capabilities into the hands of US servicemembers.
Keynote remarks by
Hon. Mark T. Esper
27th Secretary of Defense; Board Director and Co-Chair of the Commission, Atlantic Council
Hon. Deborah Lee James
23rd Secretary of the Air Force; Board Director and Co-Chair of the Commission, Atlantic Council
Commissioner panel featuring
9th Under Secretary of Defense for Policy; Co-Founder and Managing Partner, WestExec Advisors
15th Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment; Senior Advisor, The Chertoff Group
Report author panel
Vice President, Beacon Global Strategies; Report Author, Atlantic Council Commission on Defense Innovation Adoption
Defense Acquisition Leader, MITRE; Report Author, Atlantic Council Commission on Defense Innovation Adoption
Welcome remarks by
Executive Vice President & Artificial Intelligence Lead, Booz Allen Hamilton
Introductory remarks by
Read the report to learn more:
Forward Defense, housed within the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, generates ideas and connects stakeholders in the defense ecosystem to promote an enduring military advantage for the United States, its allies, and partners. Our work identifies the defense strategies, capabilities, and resources the United States needs to deter and, if necessary, prevail in future conflict.