AUSA: Optimizing the Army's S&T investment
February 21, 2013
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- Dr. Grace M. Bochenek, chief technology officer for Army Materiel Command gave the science and technology perspective in a briefing at the Winter Symposium of the Association of the United States Army in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Feb. 20.
At the symposium, Army leaders and subject matter experts discussed challenges and the way ahead though a series of briefings and panel discussions under the title of "America's Next First Battle: Manning, Training and Equipping."
Bochenek addressed the overarching questions her team and fellow science and technology strategist were facing such as: How do we know we are investing in the right things? How will these technologies help us in the future? Who else is investing in these technologies?
"What are we doing now? We are working on portfolio management," Bochenek said. "If industry has any good idea in portfolio managements, we welcome those."
Bochenek explained that improved portfolio management is helping science and technology professionals become better overall.
"Its forcing us to become much more open about our programs and portfolios," she said.
She continued by soliciting the ideas of industry to improve portfolio management.
"Looking into the future, we are using innovative and strategic thinking, synchronization, efficient and effective methods and strategic partnerships," Bochenek said.
A collaborative tool Bochenek spoke of was the idea of creating a portal which would provide the ability to show analysis and reduce redundancies.
"It's about synchronizing different activities," Bochenek explained.
AMC has more than 11,500 scientist and engineers across the country.
Ending the briefing was a short question and answer session and Bochenek addressed the elephant in the room: sequestration.
The question read: How does sequestration and continuing resolutions impact AMC and how do you plan the next 30 years without a 2013 budget?
"It's impacting us being that we are trying to look at all of the pieces of our portfolios and we are planning to make sure we understand those impacts," she stated. "On the S&T [science and technology] side, where you're going to see an impact is with single investigators, academia, grants and things like that-- where there is a total labor loss."
"The good news is we are not doing this in a vacuum. We are working on this together and have been for quite some time," she concluded on a positive note.