Chemical and Biological Defense: Program Planning and Evaluation Should Follow Results Act Framework Page: 14 of 28
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performed by an independent panel of experts.14 In December 1998, the
Defense Management Council notified DARPA that it was exempt from the
requirement. The draft performance contract was never finalized or
Congress has recognized that successful implementation on the Results Act
in science agencies would not come quickly or easily. Nonetheless,
research organizations have concluded that the Results Act can or should
be applied. The Research Roundtable, a group of federal researchers and
managers representing a cross section of departments and agencies,
concluded in 1995 that the results of a research program's performance can
be measured. The Army Research Laboratory was designated as a pilot
project for performance measurement under the act and ultimately
outlined an evaluation approach that made use of three pillars: metrics,
peer review, and customer feedback. In 1999, the Committee on Science,
Engineering, and Public Policy of the National Academy of Sciences, the
National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine reported
on the results of their work on the issue of measuring and evaluating
research in compliance with the act's requirements. The committee
concluded that both applied research and basic research programs
supported by the federal government can be evaluated meaningfully on a
Co nc lusio ns
The CB defense research and development outcomes and impacts are not
being systematically measured. The CB Defense Program lacks both
quantifiable performance measures and measurable objectives. In the
absence of measures of program impacts and measurable objectives,
progress toward achieving program goals cannot be determined. Program
planning consists of a series of roadmaps leading to specific equipment
items. Managers cite activity measures and technology demonstrations as
measures of the program's contribution. These planning and programming
steps are appropriate and necessary, but they are insufficient for
quantifying outcomes and impacts. Current measures do not assess the
incremental changes attributable, in whole or in part, to the CB Defense
14 The Defense Science Board was the proposed panel. It would have been tasked to review the
portfolio of DARPA projects to assess projects with regard to (1) relevance to warfighters, (2) ratio of
technology investments versus system development, (3) level of risk, (4) ratio of new versus continuing
efforts, and (5) level of service and commercial sector participation.
GAO/NSIAD-99-159 Chemical and Biological Defense
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United States. General Accounting Office. Chemical and Biological Defense: Program Planning and Evaluation Should Follow Results Act Framework, report, August 16, 1999; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc294407/m1/14/: accessed December 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.