New Proposed Guidance to Boost American-Made Goods in Federal Infrastructure Projects

This proposed guidance sets standards to carry out the statutory requirement that all manufacturing processes for construction material occur in the United States. This includes domestic manufacturing process standards for each construction material referenced in the BIL, including plastic and polymer-based products, glass (including optic glass), lumber, and drywall. Furthermore, the proposed guidance will help clarify for assistance recipients and American manufacturers the standards that apply to construction materials covered under BABA. To read more, click here.

Defense Industrial Base Loses Thousands More Firms, Mainly because DoD is a Tough Customer

The latest edition of an annual report by the National Defense Industrial Association suggests that even though thousands of new companies are winning their first-ever DoD contracts each year, those new entrants aren’t nearly enough to offset  the number of firms who are leaving the Defense market. The latest figures NDIA compiled show the Defense market suffered a net loss of 3,300 companies in fiscal year 2021, the latest statistics available. Although more than 8,300 firms sold goods and services to DoD customers for the first time in 2021, even more left the Defense space. Click here to read more. is a one-stop shop for U.S. government tools and resources on intellectual property rights (IPR). The federal agencies behind have developed a number of resources to educate and assist businesses, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), as well as consumers, government officials, and the general public. To visit their website, click here.

Request for Information on the 2023 Federal Cybersecurity Research and Development Strategic Plan

Members of the public have the opportunity to provide their insight on the newest version of the federal government’s guiding document for cybersecurity research and development. The National Science Foundation and the Networking and Information Technology Research and Development’s National Coordination Office filed a request for information, scheduled to be published in the Federal Register Feb. 7, on the 2023 Federal Cybersecurity Research and Development Strategic Plan as they work to update the document. Submissions must be received on or before 11:59 p.m. (ET) on March 3, 2023. Click here to read more.

New DOD Contracting Process Aims to Attract Innovative Startups

The Department of Defense (DOD) wants to make it easier for companies with innovative solutions, such as startups, to bid on and receive federal government contracts. As such, DOD recently proposed a Defense Federal Acquisition Regulations (DFARS) amendment to implement provisions of the 2022 and 2023 National Defense Authorization Acts, which provide DOD with the authority to acquire “innovative commercial products and commercial services” under general solicitations using a new, more streamlined competitive selection process called a “commercial solution opening” (CSO). DOD expects the proposed process to reduce transaction costs for both private and public sectors, which it hopes will encourage smaller companies with innovative ideas and proven solutions to take part in the federal government contracting marketplace. Click here to read more.

Future NIST AI Guidance Could Take Industry-Specific Approach

On the heels of the launch of its debut Artificial Intelligence Risk Management Framework, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) continues to posture its standards-setting approach to prioritize human engagement with emerging technologies. One detail that NIST researchers may target in forthcoming editions of their AI RMF guidance is a set of more tailored recommendations on AI and machine learning algorithms for different industries, according to an agency official. To read more click here.

DOD Instructs Acquisition Teams to Prioritize Small Business Engagement Over Best-in-Class Contracts

The Defense Department is instructing its components to support efforts to expand small business participation in the federal marketplace following the release of its “Small Business Strategy” earlier in January. The Office of the Under Secretary for Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment released a memorandum on Jan. 27 that described small businesses as “critical” to its mission while outlining specific steps the department can take to increase small business participation in the federal marketplace, from transitioning to bundling and consolidating contracts to expanding access to education on category management practices. To read more, click here.

DOD Announces the Establishment of the Defense Management Institute

At a kick-off symposium at the Institute for Defense Analyses, Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks and Pentagon Director of Administration and Management Michael Donley announced the establishment of the Defense Management Institute, a non-profit, non-partisan research organization committed to enhancing the management, organization, performance improvement and enterprise business operations of the department. The DMI implements the Secretary’s and the Deputy Secretary’s commitment to improve management across the department. To read more, click here.