Last week, the Science and Technology Directorate conducted our 6th annual portfolio review. This week-long review of projects spanning across our Divisions provides critical insight into current performance and how it all fits together in the bigger strategy, and provides transparency into our efforts for all invited guests, including our S&T and DHS teams, partners and end users.
By any measure, this week showed me the breadth and depth of S&T projects. As DHS’s primary research and development (R&D) arm, S&T manages research, development, test and evaluation for all of our stakeholders. These include all of the Department’s operational components as well as the nation’s first response community.
Our annual portfolio review is important for several reasons. First, it provides the opportunity for an annual assessment of the overall impact of S&T as it relates to our ability to support our end users. We must ensure our projects reflect and support our clearly defined operational and strategic focus, balance near and long-term challenges, and address capability gaps identified directly with our end-users. We are operating in an environment of ever-increasing threats and limited resources, so together we must ensure optimum return for our investment dollars.
Finally, our portfolio review provides our end users, including the DHS operational components like Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Transportation Security Administration, as well as the first response community (fire, police, EMS), with a seat at the table so that we can learn from one another and build upon our valuable relationships. We appreciate the time all of our end users spent with us this week.
The S&T portfolio review is just one piece of a bigger ongoing discussion on the future of homeland security. I invite you to join the National Conversation on Homeland Science and Technology and provide input in to potential future projects.
As our diverse portfolio illustrates, we are wholly committed to working with all of our partners to improve the security and resilience of our nation.
Dr. Reginald Brothers
Under Secretary for Science and Technology