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This study uses descriptive and inferential statistics to identify cost growth Analysis of Military Construction of military construction (MILCON) at the programmatic level, while bridging the gap between Selected Acquisition Report (SAR) estimates and actual project costs. Findings of this study aid the cost community with appropriate allocation of resources in developing these estimates. Overall, Major Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAP) appear to experience more negative growth (cost savings) in MILCON estimates on reviewed SARs— typically less than 0.2% of the total program cost. SAR estimates became more accurate from the first to last SAR in comparison to the total MILCON programmed for all projects within a program. However, the last SAR’s median MILCON cost estimate was approximately $31 million underestimated on projects currently authorized and appropriated for MDAPs. Preliminary research was restricted to 32 programs of which only 10 had authorized and accessible projects for comparison. Initial results suggest building on this exploratory analysis.


Defense ARJ is published by the Defense Acquisition University. The journal's online version is hosted at


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Defense Acquisition Research Journal