Defense Primer: Planning, Programming, Budgeting and Execution (PPBE) Process [Updated December 11, 2020] [open pdf - 504KB]
From the Introduction: "Planning, Programming, Budgeting, and Execution (PPBE) is the Department of Defense (DOD) process for allocating resources. The annual process serves as the framework for DOD civilian and military leaders to decide which programs and force structure requirements to fund based on strategic objectives. This product describes the notional process from the perspective of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. In practice, aspects of the process can change based on current events or leadership preferences. DOD policy states that PPBE serves as the annual resource allocation process for the department over a multi-year planning cycle. According to DOD policy, the objective of the process is 'to provide the DOD with the most effective mix of forces, equipment, manpower, and support attainable within fiscal constraints.' Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Instruction describes the process as 'the Secretary of Defense's institutional strategic planning system' and the 'primary decision-making process for translating strategic guidance into resource allocation decisions.' The process is designed to produce DOD's portion of the President's annual budget request to Congress and updates to the department's five-year spending plan known as the Future Years Defense Program, or FYDP (sometimes pronounced 'fiddip'). The process is also one leg of a triad of acquisition-related decision support systems that includes the Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS) for developing requirements to address capability gaps and the Defense Acquisition System (DAS) for managing acquisition programs."
CRS In Focus, IF10429
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/