Friday, June 14, 2024
Articles & insights in public management & leadership for the week ending June 14, 2024

GAO Pounds Table for Feds to Clear Cyber Work Backlog. The federal government’s watchdog is giving agencies credit for big policy moves to improve cybersecurity but is pounding the table with urgency for those agencies to catch up on more than 500 previous recommendations for improving cybersecurity – including more thoroughly implementing the Biden administration’s recent cyber policy directives.  

GSA Launches Co-Pilot Tool to Streamline Procurement. The General Services Administration (GSA) announced a new online tool to help make the government procurement process easier for Federal employees.  Developed by GSA in partnership with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the Procurement Co-Pilot aims to improve agency access to reliable governmentwide buying data and help eliminate duplicative data, tools, and effort. The Procurement Co-Pilot is focused on helping acquisition professionals easily see what agencies across government have paid along with other procurement data using data powered by Hi-Def, OMB’s new acquisition data management strategy.  

Treasury, CIA Face AI Talent Hiring Challenges as Technology Evolves. With the rapid growth of AI technologies, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Department of Treasury are facing challenges in finding talent with AI expertise, according to agency officials. Lakshmi Raman, chief artificial intelligence officer (CAIO) and director of AI at the CIA, discussed some of the challenges her agency faces when looking to recruit new AI talent during a panel discussion at the AI FedLab event. Brian Peretti, deputy CAIO and director of domestic and international cyber policy at the Department of Treasury, also discussed the crucial role of skill sets when tackling these issues head-on.

DIU Taps Maj. Gen. Butow to Serve as Military Deputy. The Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) has tapped Maj. Gen. Steven Butow to serve as its military deputy.  Butow currently serves as the commander of the California Air National Guard. According to DIU’s announcement this week, he was selected by the National Guard Bureau (NGB) to fill a dual-status tour with the Office of the Secretary of Defense as military deputy for DIU. Butow is the second general or flag officer to hold this position. 

DoD CDAO Seeks Industry Partner on AI Governance Plan. The Department of Defense’s (DoD) Chief Digital and Artificial Intelligence Office (CDAO) launched an open call for an industry partner to help bolster AI governance across the department. The primary objective of the call – which CDAO posted on June 4 to TradeWinds – is to find a partner who can help analyze AI governance mechanisms within the DoD or pinpoint ones that could work in the agency’s environment. This partner would develop tools for CDAO to advise DoD components on the right AI governance processes and implement recommendations across the Department.

CISA sees customers as key to ‘secure by design’ pledge. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s “secure by design” pledge might be voluntary. But CISA is hoping customers will help drive the demand for companies to follow through and adopt stronger cybersecurity practices. CISA announced the pledge in May, with an initial 68 technology companies signed onto the commitments. That number has more than doubled to 140 companies over the last month. Lauren Zabierek, senior advisor in CISA’s cybersecurity division, said the goal is to catalyze action by some of the largest technology companies.

The Erosion of Public Trust in Government Continues While a Potential Remedy Goes Underutilized. The Partnership for Public Service’s recent report on the State of Public Trust in Government 2024 paints a pretty bleak picture about how U.S. citizens view their government. Despite all the factors that seem to be undermining the public’s trust in government, there are glimmers of hope. Tom Brandt describes these glimmers of hope.

How CEOs Build Confidence in Their Leadership. Believing the conventional wisdom that they have roughly 90 days to prove themselves, many new CEOs get into trouble by launching bold initiatives before they’ve won the support and trust they need to effect change. According to a study of nearly 1,400 CEOs, earning people’s confidence actually takes two years. But leaders who focus methodically on gaining it can generate remarkable increases in company value. Drawing on their research and experience, the authors advise incoming CEOs to adopt a patient approach by setting a deliberate pace, picking battles strategically, and engaging stakeholders when the time is right.



ICYMI Harnessing Technology & Charting the Future of Weapons, Systems, and Platforms. This week Michael Keegan welcomed Vice Admiral Frank Morley, Principal Military Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition to discuss what the U.S. Department of the Navy is doing to field weapons, systems, and platforms that give it a technological edge over adversaries, how the Navy's acquisition strategy continues to evolve to better meet the needs of modern warfare, and the U.S. Navy’s efforts to modernize its fleet assets.