The Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration (ACTD) program was started by the Department of Defense (DOD) as a way to get new technologies that meet critical military needs into the hands of users faster and less cost. GAO was asked to examine DOD's process for structuring and executing ACTDs.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Department of Defense||1. To ensure that transition decisions are based on sufficient knowledge, the Secretary of Defense should develop and require the use of specific criteria for assessing the military utility of each of the technologies and concepts that are to be demonstrated within each ACTD. The criteria should at a minimum identify measurement standards for performance effectiveness and address how results should be reported in terms of scope, format, and desired level of detail.|
|Department of Defense||2. To ensure funding of the transition and its aftermath, the Secretary of Defense should explore the option of requiring the services or defense agencies to develop a category within their budgets specifically for ACTD transition activities, including procurement and follow-on support.|
|Department of Defense||3. To ensure that transition decisions reflect DOD's priorities, the Secretary of Defense should require that the lead service or defense agency obtain the concurrence of the Secretary's designated representative on any decision not to transition an ACTD that is based on joint requirements and determined to be militarily useful.|