Housing:

More Improvements Can Be Made in HUD's Research and Technology Activities

CED-80-134: Published: Aug 29, 1980. Publicly Released: Aug 29, 1980.

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A recently completed review of the Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) research and technology activities focused on those activities initiated within the past 3 years. To achieve a variety of objectives, the HUD Office of Policy Development and Research (PDR) conducts extremely diverse research which includes hundreds of projects spread among many subject areas.

Positive steps taken to strengthen the research and technology program include improved in-house research capabilities, better product dissemination, and improved management procedures. Progress has also been made in achieving a more focused and responsive research program. However, further progress is limited by the fragmentary nature of the research. Some dissatisfaction still exists among the many HUD and non-HUD user groups due to the lack of specific and meaningful research objectives clearly defining how and to what extent HUD research will address user needs. More attention is needed to involve program offices in research planning and management, to improve the selection of procurement instruments, and to develop a self-evaluation system.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of HUD should: develop guidelines specifying the circumstances under which research and demonstrations can be performed in program offices and the role the Office of Policy Development and Research should have in such activities; direct the Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research, in conjunction with departmental top management, to develop specific, measurable research objectives defined in terms of major research questions to be addressed and user groups to be served by the the research program; and direct the Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research to improve other aspects of priority setting. To improve research management, the Secretary should direct the Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research to: intensify internal oversight of its use of various procurement devices, especially task order contracts and sole-source agreements, with a goal to increase competition to the fullest extent possible; use Government Technical Monitors to a much greater extent, especially in those areas where program offices have an interest; and develop a self-evaluation system for measuring research results against specific objectives on a regular basis.

    Agency Affected:

 

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