About

Improving Acquisition Outcomes

Applying Innovative and Alternative Methods to DoD Acquisition Needs

The Acquisition Innovation Research Center (AIRC) was established in September 2020 by the Department of Defense (DoD) to infuse innovation and alternative methods needed to better respond to the rapid increase of technological advancements critical to today’s warfighter.

As an operational academic research arm of the DoD, the AIRC will bring a robust and scalable capability that reduces the impedance to innovation inherent in policies, practices and procedures, and provide rapid responses to warfighter needs.

The newly established AIRC will focus on:

  • Researching acquisition policies and practices and the application of new technologies and analytical capabilities to enhance strategic decision making.
  • Developing pilot programs to prototype and demonstrate new acquisition insights and practices for potential transition to broader use.
  • Enhancing education efforts to support the defense acquisition workforce.
  • Cultivating research efforts of emerging best practices that span across OUSD A&S and R&E.
  • Broadening its network of acquisition leaders and professionals across government, industry and academia.

The AIRC will conduct projects that bring “out of the box” thinking to address the most critical challenges facing the Department of Defense.

WORKING WITH AIRC

The AIRC will continuously engage the talents of leaders, researchers and subject matter experts from across its network of universities to create an ecosystem that promotes innovation in academic analysis and policy alternatives for improved defense acquisition outcomes powered by evidence-based, data driven decision making.

AIRC Engagement Pathways Incubate Ideate Respond Connect

Incubate

Selected Sponsors and Offices within the DoD define priority themes (e.g., Acquisition and T&E), and the research community responds with innovative ideas to explore within these priority themes.

Ideate

AIRC provides a platform for the community of researchers to propose innovative ideas for experiments and pilots for the relevant sponsors and offices to consider.

Respond

AIRC provides a resource to the Sponsors and Offices within the DoD to explore innovative approaches to specific priorities.

Connect

AIRC connects a network of the top academic and research faculty across its university collaborators to address emergent questions. The AIRC's flexible contracting approach allows for a Sponsor to quickly bring together an expert or group of experts from across the collaborator universities for focused panels, workshops, studies, or other engagements.

If you intend to fund research with the AIRC or would like to engage with an AIRC faculty member about a research project, please submit your information, as well as a short description of the research. We will contact you with specific instructions.

Funding the AIRC is a simple process, involving a short statement of work and researcher proposal. We will assist with the Statement of Work and Proposal as needed.

If you have a research idea, or potential government sponsor, please submit your information, as well as a short description of the research. We will contact you with specific instructions.

Funding the AIRC is a simple process, involving a short statement of work and researcher proposal. We will assist with the Statement of Work and Proposal as needed.

CONTRACTING WITH US:

UARC’s receive sole source funding (UARC contracts) from DoD under the authority of 10 U.S.C. Section 2304(c)(3)(B) in order to establish or maintain an essential engineering, research, and/or development capability. The UARC DoD primary sponsors are OUSD(R&E) and U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Picatinny Arsenal.

Cultivating and Leveraging a Network of Experts and Researchers