Enabling Government to Attract Innovation that Serves the Nation – The Case of “OTAs”

In the more than six decades since “Other Transactions Authority” (OTA) was authorized, OTAs have become a vital part of the Department of Defense (DOD) research process, and are now increasingly used by other agencies seeking to drive innovation through their programs and services. OTAs follow statutory provisions that allow certain federal agencies to enter into transactions with commercial entities using nontraditional procurement methods and contract terms.

The greater prevalence of OTAs has raised a number of questions about their use, including: 

Margie Graves joins IBM Center for The Business of Government as Senior Fellow

Margie Graves comes to the IBM Center for The Business of Government after a successful career with leading technology-focused organizations and initiatives in government, industry, and the non-profit sector.

Guidance on Regulatory Guidance: What the Government Needs to Know and Do to Engage the Public

Federal agencies routinely issue guidance documents to announce policy statements and to clarify the meaning of existing statutes and regulations. Over time, guidance documents have become a principal agency policy instrument.

Leveraging the TMF to improve customer experience

Co-blogger:  Margie Graves, Visiting Fellow, IBM Center for The Business of Government

Government’s interaction with members of the public occurs throughout a person’s life.  By focused attention on delivering a great experience for customers – a goal commonly referred to “CX”, short for customer experience – agencies will provide great value for the people they serve.  CX thus becomes a strategic imperative in mission delivery, and a foundational element to build public trust in government.

How Defense Agencies Can Leverage AI Effectively

Artificial intelligence (AI) has radically redefined many aspects of everyday life. Organizations across both the public and private sectors are exploiting AI for a wide array of applications. For defense organizations, AI solutions also present significant opportunities to improve mission effectiveness.

Deploying AI in defense organizations

Artificial intelligence (AI) has radically redefined many aspects of everyday life. Organizations across both the public and private sectors are exploiting AI for a wide array of applications. For defense organizations, AI solutions also present significant opportunities to improve mission effectiveness.

How the TMF Can Enable Broad Improvements Across Government

Agencies can learn from experience about how modernization investments can be sustained and scaled over time as they prepare their first round of proposals for the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF).   Specifically, the TMF guidance from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) calls for proposals that reach across the government enterprise to include:

A New Research Agenda – Fostering Innovative Studies that Help Government

The IBM Center for The Business of Government is pleased to release our new research announcement, which defines key challenges facing government and request proposals for future studies from experts in academia and the non-profit sectors.

IBM Center Research Announcement 2021

The IBM Center for The Business of Government connects research to practice, supporting work by scholars that benefits government through analysis of real-world experience that leads to practical, actionable recommendations. Center reports are intended to spark the imagination—crafting new ways to think about government by identifying trends, new ideas, and best practices in public management and innovation. Center reports help government executives respond more effectively to mission and management priorities.

Leveraging the TMF for the secure modernization of high value assets

Last week we published the first in an ongoing series of commentaries intended to highlight the Technology Modernization Fund as a funding option available to agencies to modernize critical systems while lessening reliance on costly legacy systems and reducing cyber risk. In this first post, we outlined elements of the Office of Management and Budget’s TMF/American Rescue Plan (APR) guidance that were just recently updated.


Executive Director
IBM Center for The Business of Government
600 14th Street, NW
Second Floor
Washington, DC 20005
United States
(202) 551-9310

Dan Chenok is Executive Director of the IBM Center for The Business of Government. He oversees all of the Center's activities in connecting research to practice to benefit government, and has written and spoken extensively around government technology, cybersecurity, privacy, regulation, budget, acquisition, and Presidential transitions. Mr. Chenok previously led consulting services for Public Sector Technology Strategy, working with IBM government, healthcare, and education clients.

Mr. Chenok serves in numerous industry leadership positions. He is a CIO SAGE and member of the Research Advisory Council with the Partnership for Public Service, Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, Member of the Board of Directors for the Senior Executives Association, Member of the Government Accountability Office Polaris Advisory Council for Science and Technology, Member of the American University IT Executive Council, and Mentor with the Global Policy, Diplomacy, and Sustainability Fellowship.  Previously, he served as Chair of the Industry Advisory Council (IAC) for the government-led American Council for Technology (ACT), Chair of the Cyber Subcommittee of the DHS Data Privacy and Integrity Advisory Committee, Chair of the NIST-sponsored Federal Information Security and Privacy Advisory Board, and two-time Cybersecurity commission member with the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Mr. Chenok also generally advises public sector leaders on a wide range of management issues. Finally, Mr. Chenok serves as an Adjunct Associate Professor with the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas in Austin, teaching at the school's Washington, DC Center.  

Before joining IBM, Mr. Chenok was a Senior Vice President for Civilian Operations with Pragmatics, and prior to that was a Vice President for Business Solutions and Offerings with SRA International.

As a career Government executive, Mr. Chenok served as Branch Chief for Information Policy and Technology with the Office of Management and Budget, where he led a staff with oversight of federal information and IT policy, including electronic government, computer security, privacy and IT budgeting. Prior to that, he served as Assistant Branch Chief and Desk Officer for Education, Labor, HHS, and related agencies in OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. Mr. Chenok began his government service as an analyst with the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, and left government service at the end of 2003.

In 2008, Mr. Chenok served on President Barack Obama’s transition team as the Government lead for the Technology, Innovation, and Government Reform group, and as a member of the OMB Agency Review Team.

Mr. Chenok has won numerous honors and awards, including a 2010 Federal 100 winner for his work on the presidential transition, the 2016 Eagle Award for Industry Executive of the Year, and the 2002 Federal CIO Council Azimuth Award for Government Executive of the Year.

Mr. Chenok earned a BA from Columbia University and a Master of Public Policy degree from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.

Your cart

Your cart is empty.