GovMates’ Holiday Bash: An event for government contractors, large system integrators and more! Get your tickets here.
Protest decision highlights an interesting defense: GAO argues protestor is not an "interested party" because of personnel departure.
Senate looks to speed ahead on temporary funding: The move would avert a government shutdown through the holidays.
GovCon M&A deals are “rebounding” after a slow period: The resounding theme from this year's Baird Conference.
DEFENSE & AEROSPACE
The B-21 Raider, the Air Force’s new stealth bomber, has completed its first flight test.
The B-21 Raider resembles its predecessor, the B-2 Spirit, but it has advanced stealth and propulsion technology that enables it to evade detection and attacks more effectively. The aircraft can support manned and unmanned missions. It can also carry nuclear weapons. Read more
U.S-China rivalry is “the new normal.”
The U.S.–China Economic and Security Review Commission is warning of China’s efforts against space norms and its pursuit of space-based nuclear weapons, which comes as competition between the US and China continues to intensify. The organization issued a 741, in-depth report. Read more
Austin calls National Defense Strategy the DOD's "North Star."
The Secretary of Defense has called the National Defense Strategy the department's "North Star"; officials are working to implement the strategy and link the strategy to resources, said one official performing the duties of the deputy undersecretary of defense for policy. Read more
Defense Contract Awards
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Defense Job Openings
The end of a U.S. spy program?
Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance will expire at the end of the year unless the White House and Congress can agree on how to renew it. The tool allows the collection of intelligence outside the country. It also lets the government tap into the communication of people living in the U.S. who communicate with foreigners under surveillance. Read more
Critics bash CBP's broker deal for allegedly masking spy tools.
The CBP is paying data broker LexisNexis Special Services Inc. for access to a powerful suite of surveillance tools, but critics say the agency is using the contract to hide its complete ability to monitor immigrants and others in the US. Read more
Lawmakers race to save VA's tech training program by year's end.
Congressional leaders are hoping to save the Veteran Employment Through Technology Education Courses — or VET-TEC — program. The five-year pilot program, which launched in 2019, offers eligible veterans tuition assistance “to enroll in high technology programs of education that the [VA] Secretary determines provide training or skills sought by employers in a relevant field or industry.” Read more
GSA kicks off work on COMET IT Recompete
The GSA has started working on its second iteration of the CIO Modernization and Enterprise Transformation contract vehicle for information technology services and expects the COMET recompete to have a ceiling value of more than $1B. Read more
Task force calls on FAA to "urgently" address its staffing issues
Overtime, staffing shortages and shutdowns are to blame for recent air safety issues, a panel has found, as a task force is calling on the FAA to address its staffing issues to avoid further risks to the flying public. Read more
Civilian Contracts Awards
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Civilian Job Openings
C3 Integrated Solutions merges with Ingalls Information Security.
C3 and Ingalls have merged, bringing together Ingalls’ diverse cybersecurity expertise from the military, defense, and intelligence sectors to C3. This enhances C3’s existing qualifications as one of the most experienced IT and compliance partners for the Defense Industrial Base (DIB). Read more
Washington Harbour buys cybersec provider SIXGEN.
Private investment firm Washington Harbour Partners has purchased cybersecurity company SIXGEN. Ethan Dietrich, founder and CEO of SIXGEN, will continue to lead the company, according to Washing Harbour. Read more
SMX has acquired Outside Analytics.
SMX has acquired a provider of software engineering and data analytics services as part of a push to expand further into national security space programs. By purchasing Outside Analytics, SMX is also bringing in a team of engineers and scientists that work across the lifecycle of space-based data that involves the first sensing of light to the operations-and-maintenance phase. Read more
SHOWER THOUGHTS 🚿
How can senior civil servants affect real change in big orgs?
We often think about innovations in organizations as being driven either from the top or the bottom — a top leader who inspires or drives change, or young new employees with a fire in their belly. However, it may be senior civil leaders who are best positioned to affect lasting change in large organizations. Read more
How do we define what counts as AI?
AGI is one of the most disputed concepts in tech. Now, researchers at Google DeepMind want to fix that and try to define what really counts as artificial general intelligence: one of the hottest topics in tech today. Read more
Are underage workers who train AI getting exposed to traumatic content?
Companies that provide Big Tech with AI data-labeling services are inadvertently hiring young teens to work on their platforms, often exposing them to traumatic content. The nature of the work often feels like digital servitude—but it's a necessity for earning a livelihood,” according to one data labeler. Read more
The USA‘s Social Security benefits are modest by international standards. The US ranks just outside the bottom third of developed countries in the percentage of an average worker’s earnings replaced by the public pension system. The countries with the highest social security benefits are, in order: Denmark, Luxembourg, Portugal, Colombia, Italy, Austria. The USA is #29 on the linked-to source’s graph. (Source)
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