Document Type




Format of Original

14 p.

Publication Date

Winter 2000


Society of Cost Estimating and Analysis

Source Publication

Journal of Cost Analysis and Management

Source ISSN



The response of our defense industrial base to major changes, such as the collapse of the former Soviet Union, emphasize the need to continue to improve the way the United States buys weapon systems. By looking through a historical lens, this paper addresses predicting the long-term success of acquisition practices and reform initiatives for the cost community. A literature review identifies acquisition reform legislation and initiatives since World War II. Looking at past acquisition reform and their long term impacts leads to the conclusion that acquisition reform efforts must be viewed skeptically. Given a dynamic environment, estimating costs may actually be made more difficult by reform initiatives. Improvement in the acquisition of weapon systems requires fundamental cange that emphasizes future implications, not just focusing on the present or past.


Published Version. Journal of Cost Analysis and Management, (Winter 2000), pp. 69-82. DOI. © 1999-2007 Society of Cost Estimating and Analysis. Used with permission.

David King was affiliated with the Unites States Air Force at the time of publication.

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