Comparison of Six Projects Managed by DOE and Government-Owned, Contractor-Operated Laboratories

EMD-81-137: Published: Sep 30, 1981. Publicly Released: Oct 30, 1981.

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GAO was requested to provide management, overhead, and direct cost data on six Department of Energy (DOE) projects, three managed directly by DOE and three managed for DOE by Government-owned, contractor-operated (GOCO) laboratories. The data were requested so that the management and overhead costs of DOE-managed projects could be compared with similar GOCO-managed projects.

The data which GAO collected were both incomplete and inconsistent. Thus, GAO was unable to reach supportable conclusions about the preference of DOE project management over GOCO management. Hovever, GAO found that the GOCO-managed projects stayed closer to their projected costs and schedules than DOE-run projects. Thus, it is possible that GOCO-managed projects, although costing more in terms of management and overhead, are more effectively run.

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