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Title Sources of weapon system cost growth : analysis of 35 major defense acquisition programs / Joseph G. Bolten [and others].

Publication Info. Santa Monica, CA : Rand Corporation, [2008]


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Description 1 online resource (xxv, 90 pages) : illustrations
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 89-90).
Contents Introduction -- Study approach -- Cost growth selected programs -- Summary and recommendations -- Appendix A: Cost growth of individual programs -- Appendix B: Weighted cost growth -- Appendix C: Trigger events -- Appendix D: OSD guidance and definitions of the SAR cost-variance categories.
Summary Previous studies have shown that the Department of Defense (DoD) and the military departments have historically underestimated the cost of new weapon systems. Quantifying cost growth is important, but the larger issue is why cost growth occurs. To address that issue, this analysis uses data from Selected Acquisition Reports to examine 35 mature, but not necessarily complete, major defense acquisition programs similar to the type and complexity of those typically managed by the Air Force. The programs are first examined as a complete set, then Air Force and non-Air Force programs are analyzed separately to determine whether the causes of cost growth in the two groups differ. Four major sources of cost growth were identified: (1) errors in estimation and scheduling, (2) decisions made by the government, (3) financial matters, and (4) miscellaneous sources. Total (development plus procurement) cost growth, when measured as simple averages among the program set, is dominated by decisions, which account for more than two-thirds of the growth. Most decisions-related cost growth involves quantity changes (22 percent), requirements growth (13 percent), and schedule changes (9 percent). Cost estimation (10 percent) is the only large contributor in the errors category. Less than 4 percent of the overall cost growth is due to financial and miscellaneous causes. Because decisions involving changes in requirements, quantities, and production schedules dominate cost growth, program managers, service leadership, and Congress should look for ways to reduce changes in these areas.
Note Print version record.
Access Use copy Restrictions unspecified star MiAaHDL
Reproduction Electronic reproduction. [S.l.] : HathiTrust Digital Library, 2010. MiAaHDL
System Details Master and use copy. Digital master created according to Benchmark for Faithful Digital Reproductions of Monographs and Serials, Version 1. Digital Library Federation, December 2002. MiAaHDL
Processing Action digitized 2010 HathiTrust Digital Library committed to preserve pda MiAaHDL
Subject United States. Department of Defense -- Procurement -- Cost control.
United States. Department of Defense. (OCoLC)fst01852447
United States -- Armed Forces -- Weapons systems -- Costs.
HISTORY -- Military -- Other.
Armed Forces -- Procurement -- Cost control. (OCoLC)fst01351861
Armed Forces -- Weapons systems -- Costs. (OCoLC)fst01351921
United States. (OCoLC)fst01204155
Added Author Bolten, J. G. (Joseph George), 1944-
Other Form: Print version: Sources of weapon system cost growth. Santa Monica, CA : Rand Corp., ©2008 9780833042897 0833042890 (DLC) 2008006970 (OCoLC)192109807
ISBN 9780833045249 (electronic bk.)
0833045245 (electronic bk.)
Report No. RAND/MG-670-AF
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