Adjusting to a New Security Environment: The Defense Technology and Industrial Base Challenge   [open pdf - 317KB]

The size, form, and purpose of the United States anneal forces are all being examined along with questions of how much defense the Nation needs and how much it can afford. While no clear answers have yet emerged, there is a consensus that-despite Operation Desert Storm-as long as positive trends in U.S.-Soviet relations continue, U.S. defense procurement during the coming decade will be much less than in the preceding one. As a result, the defense technology and industrial base that develops and produces our military systems is currently in flux, changing in both size and form. OTA has been asked by several congressional committees and individual Members of Congress to conduct an assessment of what form the future defense technology and industrial base might take; what form it ought to take; what government policies can do to draw these two together; and how the sweeping changes expected in the base can be managed to minimize adverse economic effects and ensure sufficient future technology and industrial capability to meet the Nation's needs. To set the context for this assessment, this background paper outlines the complex defense technology and industrial base challenges that confront the Nation in adjusting to a new security environment. It examines the role of the defense technology and industrial base in maintaining America's security, and the major factors affecting the country's evolving security posture.

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Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University http://www.wws.princeton.edu/~ota/
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