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Pentagon Starting to Map Defense Contracting Industry

Photo: Igor Zhorov

The Defense Department is launching an effort to build a map of the defense contracting industry sector-by-sector and tier-by-tier, a top Pentagon official told lawmakers Tuesday.

Brett Lambert, deputy assistant secretary for manufacturing and industrial base policy, told a House Armed Services subcommittee that the Pentagon wants to go beyond just understanding its top-tier prime contractors.

Along with being able to see the whole industrial base, the map would help the Pentagon better decide which industries it depends on and keep them healthy, according to a report from Federal News Radio.

“The goal is to understand the gross anatomy of the industrial base,” Lambert said in written remarks. “Just as doctors do not seek to understand the functioning of every individual neuron in the central nervous systems, the department does not seek to know the exact details and reasoning behind every supplier relationship. But we do need to better understand the industrial base’s nervous system, circulatory system, and bone structure.”

Lambert added the Pentagon wanted insight into subcontractors that it does not deal with directly, allowing it to better determine the health of the defense industrial base.

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