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DoD Restructures Research & Engineering, Acquisition Offices

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The Defense Department has issued a memo that details the reorganization of the offices of the undersecretary of research and engineering and undersecretary for acquisition and sustainment, Defense News reported Tuesday.

Lt. Col. Michelle Baldanza, a spokeswoman for DoD, told the publication that Congress and Defense Secretary James Mattis have been notified of the July 13 memo signed by Patrick Shanahan, deputy defense secretary.

Michael Griffin, head of the R&E office, will perform technical risk reviews and provide advice to DoD secretary on potential capability issues with programs.

Griffin will have a deputy undersecretary who will oversee five offices: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency; Missile Defense Agency; Defense Innovation Unit Experimental; Strategic Capabilities Office; and the Strategic Intelligence Analysis Cell, according to the organizational structure obtained by Defense News.

The R&E’s research and technology unit has five assistant directors focused on cyber, microelectronics, quantum science, directed energy and machine learning/artificial intelligence, while the advanced capabilities division has assistant chiefs focused on space, autonomy, hypersonics and networked C3.

The memo noted that a deputy undersecretary will directly report to Ellen Lord, DoD undersecretary for A&S, and oversee several offices, including the industrial base office.

Three assistant secretaries will be responsible for sustainment, acquisition and nuclear, chemical and biological programs, while four directors will manage international cooperation, special programs, joint rapid acquisition cell and strategy, data and design, according to the organizational chart.

Lord and Griffin are both 2018 Wash100 recipients.

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