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US Intel Community Turning to Commercial Companies for R&D


June 3, 2103

By ZACHARY FRYER-BIGGS
DefenseNews.com

With pressure on US defense contractors to cut costs and government research-and-development (R&D) spending facing new budget realities, the intelligence community is increasingly leaning on commercial companies to provide needed R&D, moving away from past reliance on traditional defense contractors.

Proof of the renewed interest in commercial companies comes in the form of a trip to Silicon Valley last week led by Dawn Meyerriecks, deputy director of national intelligence for acquisition and technology, where senior intelligence officials met with companies to discuss innovation for the government.

Describing R&D plans during a recent roundtable with reporters, Meyerriecks said the agency is increasingly leaning on nontraditional defense contractors and that she anticipates the trend will continue.

“I think it will be more commercial,” Meyerriecks said. “Maybe I come in prejudiced; I’m happy with that. I wish we had done that sooner. But as the boss says, don’t let a good crisis go to waste.”

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