Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Alfred E. Thal, Jr., PhD


Despite numerous reform efforts over the past 30 years, acquisition programs in the Department of Defense (DoD) continue to experience cost overruns and schedule delays. One contributing factor is the decision-making process used by defense officials. The General Accounting Office (GAO) has stated that ‘poor program outcomes are the lack of widespread adoption of a knowledge-based acquisition process within DoD despite polices that support such a process. A knowledge-based business case at the outset of each program would alleviate overpromising on cost, schedule, and performance and would empower program managers.’ Effective decision-making for acquisition programs is very important. It not only affects the performance of a program but could also impact the lives of Airman, Soldiers, Sailors, and Marines protecting our country. Analyzing decision support products is one method to improve the knowledge used during the decision-making process. Therefore, the scope of this research focused on knowledge products supporting decisions made by DoD acquisition officials and their alignment with best practices and their usefulness to decision-makers. This research found that the required information contained in decision support products is not adequate to provide the knowledge needed to make informed decisions. Recommendations for improving decision support for key knowledge areas will be discussed.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number