Barbara McQuiston: DOD Forms Innovation Steering Group

Barbara McQuiston, who is performing the duties of the undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, said the Department of Defense has established a steering group focused on innovation, Nextgov reported Tuesday.

“We’re very lucky we just started the innovation steering group under Deputy Secretary [Kathleen] Hicks, and what we’re doing in innovation is looking across the DOD as transforming a lot of the processes in order to be better adapters of technology and to more efficiently and rapidly modernize,” McQuiston said Tuesday during a Senate Appropriations Defense subcommittee hearing.

McQuiston’s announcement came amid discussions among lawmakers over defense budget. The Biden administration proposed a flat topline for DOD in its discretionary budget request for fiscal year 2022, reflecting a 1.7 percent rise from the Pentagon’s current FY 2021 budget allocation.

The hearing also touched on the department’s emerging technology priorities such as hypersonics, cybersecurity and quantum computing.

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