American force transformation is about building a new
expeditionary model with flexible, modular forces that can be
managed on a global basis to protect U.S. interests. Breaking the
tyranny of geography on military forces is a key aspect to change.
Transformation represents a shift in the demand side of the
defense industrial business to provide for these new capabilities.
The Department of Defense (DOD) is seeking system-of-systems
management to deliver capabilities to the services and for joint
military operations. This represents a shift from the past emphasis
upon platforms and a primary focus upon service-specific technologies
As the demand side of the equation has shifted, so has the
supply side. Defense consolidation in the 1990s dealt with scarcity;
now the newly emerged mega-primes are asked to play the role of
lead systems integrators (LSIs) or system-of-systems managers to
deliver capability to DOD for transformed operations.
DOD moved to a different way of doing business before the
transformation effort emerged as a core priority. Now that the
transformation agenda is dominating the shift in the relationship
between industry and government, working through LSI
roles in shaping capabilities-based procurement will be especially
Additionally, the new LSI and system-of-systems management
model is shaping a new approach to allies. The new model
can allow industry to shape new capabilities on a transatlantic
basis. Rather than the old export-after-production model, the new
LSI model, coupled with a transformation emphasis, leads to the
shaping of new opportunities for developing capabilities before
core series production decisions would be taken.
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