Analysis / Reform

Creating OSD “Mission Teams”

Assessing Defense Reform Series

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Proposals for “mission teams” in the Department of Defense are not new. Jim Locher, the most prominent proponent, has argued for them since the 1980s and included them in his recent testimony to the SASC: “What we really need in today’s environment to move quickly is to focus all of our people on missions instead of on their own functions. . . . Whether it’s counterterrorism or weapons of mass destruction or what we’re doing right now in the Middle East, there is no place in the headquarters of the Department of Defense where the secretary can have all of that functional expertise integrated into a mission team.”

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Mark Cancian, "Creating OSD “Mission Teams”," Center for Strategic and International Studies, July 1, 2016, last modified July 1, 2016,