Friday, February 23, 2024
Articles & insights in public management & leadership for the week ending February 23, 2024

VA puts 40 AI uses cases into ‘operational phase’ to meet its health care mission. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) sees artificial intelligence tools as a way to provide a higher level of care to veterans, while reducing administrative tasks and burnout among its employees. VA has identified over 100 AI use cases so far. VA Chief Technology Officer Charles Worthington told members of the House VA Committee that 40 of them are in an “operational phase,” and being put to use in the field. 

Pentagon Delivers ‘Minimum Viable’ CJADC2 Capabilities. The Department of Defense (DoD) has delivered its long-sought initial iteration of the Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control (CJADC2) capability – the department’s AI-powered meta-network of connected sensors to coordinate all the armed forces – said Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks. CJADC2 is the department’s approach to developing both material and non-material solutions to deliver information and decision advantage to commanders. “CJADC2 isn’t a platform, or a single system. It’s a fusion of concepts, technologies, policies, tools, and talent that’s advancing how we command and control forces with key allies and partners,” says Hicks. 

DoD dispelling lingering myths about OTAs. The Defense Department is increasingly turning to Other Transaction Authority contracts (OTAs) as a mechanism to fund research and development projects. Between 2016 and 2022, DoD took 15,000 OTA actions worth about $70 billion. In fiscal 2022, the department took about 4,400 actions worth $10.7 billion. Despite the increasing growth, misconceptions around OTAs still linger, said Bonnie Evangelista, the DoD’s chief data and AI officer’s acting deputy for acquisition directorate, at the Advantage DoD 2024 symposium Tuesday.

New mindset must underscore Navy’s IT modernization efforts. Like almost all agencies, the Department of the Navy does a good job of buying and replacing old technology. Where the DoN, and most others struggle is how to sustain that application or system over the long term. Jennifer Edgin, the assistant deputy chief of naval operations for information warfare, said her office is leading a perspective shift to ensure technology is onboarded quickly and is always modernized. Changing our mindset from a buy and replace to a buy and sustain so that our sailors can get updates when they need them, how they need them to face whatever they may be facing at sea.

CISA’s new plan to better align cybersecurity operations. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is introducing a new strategic approach for 2024 called the Federal Enterprise Operations Cyber Alignment Plan. Its focus is bringing agencies together to compare notes on recent cyber incidents and approaches, and align behind a common path forward, especially for  analysts in their security operations centers. 

AFRL CIO Shares the 5 Deadly Sins of Digital Transformation. Alexis Bonnell, the chief information officer (CIO) and director of the Digital Capabilities Directorate at the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), shared with industry the five deadly sins of digital transformation, and called on organizations to adopt a people-centric mindset. Coming from a private sector background herself, Bonnell shared the sins to highlight what she “got wrong before” and drive home the fact that technology is ultimately about people. “I think the very first one is the most important, and that is this: digital transformation is not about technology. It is about recognizing who we want to be as an organization, how we want our people to behave,” 

GSA Eyes Successor to Federal EIS Comms Contract. The General Services Administration (GSA) is looking for input to help flesh out the agency’s Next Generation Network Infrastructure (NGNI) strategy that may succeed GSA’s existing Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) contracts that guide how Federal agencies buy communications and related services.

USDA Seeking CX, Digital, Procurement Pros for Fellowship Program.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture Digital Service (USDA DS) is launching – along with the agency’s Office of Customer Experience (OCX) – a new fellowship that will help recruit some of the brightest minds for digital service delivery, procurement, and customer experience work at the agency. 


ICYMI – Transforming the Business of Government: Insights on Resiliency, Innovation, and Performance. How can we find value in the unexpected? What can we do to be more resilient? How can we leverage innovation to improve government performance? Michael Keegan explored these questions and more on a Special Edition of The Business of Government Hour celebrating the 25th anniversary of the IBM Center for The Business of Government.