Defense Conversion

Defense Conversion

Paperback Twentieth Century Fund Book

By (author) Jacques S. Gansler

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  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Format: Paperback | 294 pages
  • Dimensions: 151mm x 231mm x 17mm | 438g
  • Publication date: 31 October 1996
  • Publication City/Country: Cambridge, Mass.
  • ISBN 10: 0262571161
  • ISBN 13: 9780262571166
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: New edition
  • Illustrations note: 5
  • Sales rank: 1,618,777

Product description

Author of two widely-read books on the defense industry, Jacques Gansler takes a hard look at the need to convert the industry from an inefficient and noncompetitive part of the U.S. economy to an integrated, civilian/military operation. He defines the challenges, especially the influence of old-line defense interests, and presents examples of restructuring. Gansler discusses growing foreign involvement, lessons of prior industrial conversions, the best structure for the next century, current barriers to integration, a three-part transformation strategy, the role of technological leadership, and the critical workforce. He concludes by outlining sixteen specific actions for achieving civil/military integration.In Gansler's view, the end of the Cold War with the former Soviet Union represents a permanent downturn rather than a cyclical decline in the defense budget. He argues that this critical transition period requires a restructuring of the defense acquisitions process to achieve a balance between economic concerns and national security, while maintaining a force size and equipment modernization capable of deterring future conflicts.Gansler argues that for the defense industry to survive and thrive, the government must make its acquisitions process more flexible, specifically by lowering barriers to integration. This includes, among other things, rethinking the production specifications for new equipment and changing bids for contracts from a cost basis to a price basis.Gansler point out that by making primarily political and procedural changes (rather than legislative ones), companies will be able to produce technology for both civilian and military markets, instead of exclusively for one or the other as has been the norm. This dual-use approach would save the government billions of dollars annually and would enable the military to diversify by utilizing state-of-the-art.

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Author information

Jacques S. Gansler is the author of the influential books The Defense Industry (1980), Affording Defense (1989), and Defense Conversion: Transforming the Arsenal of Democracy (1998), all published by the MIT Press. He is currently Professor and Roger C. Lipitz Chair, School of Public Policy, University of Maryland, and served as Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics from 1997 to 2001.

Back cover copy

Author of two widely read books on the defense industry, Jacques Gansler takes a hard look at the need to convert the industry from an inefficient and noncompetitive part of the U.S. economy to an integrated civilian/military operation.

Table of contents

The challenge; the Cold War defense industry; growing foreign involvement; initial post-Cold War developments; prior lessons of industrial conversion; the best structure for the 21st century; a few defense-unique plants; current barriers to integration; a three-part transformation strategy; technological leadership; the critical work force; achieving civil/military integration.