Teaching Case - CALS: Linking the Government and its Vendors

CALS: Linking the Government and its Vendors


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  • Product Description

    This case follows the early stages of the development of a Department of Defense computer infrastructure for the receiving and storing of engineering drawings for weapons systems. Prior to the effort to develop the Computer-Aided Acquisition and Logistics system (CALS), the Defense Department's 580,000 contracting officers had existed in a "paper" world, one in which key drawings were routinely misfiled and effectively lost. The development of an infrastructure to replace that antiquated system, however, did not follow an obvious course. The department had to consider a variety of formats as well as the expectations and desires of the key private contractors with whom it dealt. This case tracks the development of a procurement computer infrastructure in detail, as well as inviting discussion as to how ranking Pentagon officials can be sure that the new technology will be used imaginatively-to improve the procurement of new weapons systems and spare parts-rather than becoming an overlay of new, specialized contracting requirements divorced from the initial goals of the CALS system.

  • Other Details

    Publication Date: January 01, 1989
    HKS Case Number: 1011.0
    Case Author: Steven Kelman
    Faculty Lead: Steven Kelman
    Pages (incl. exhibits): 13
    Setting: United States
    Language: English
    _year: Older than 2000
    _pages: 1-15
    _geography: US & Canada
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