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The Mission-Ready Cloud: A Multi-Vendor Cloud Architecture for the US Defense and Intelligence Communities

William Schneider & Tod Lindberg

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Introduction

After six years operating with a single cloud-services provider under its Commercial Cloud Services (C2S) program, the intelligence community (IC) decided last year to take a different approach. Instead of a single provider, the new Commercial Cloud Enterprise (C2E) will create a highly flexible “indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity” (IDIQ) contract vehicle for cloud services. This will allow those in charge of the various missions within the IC to select providers on the basis of the contractor’s ability to meet the specific IT needs of the mission. This change in approach will allow for far greater competition among cloud service providers rather than a small number of “winner take all” contracts. The environment will be one of constant competition for task orders under IDIQ, leading to greater pressure for innovation and improvement as well as lower costs. This change of approach has vast implications, not only within the IC, but also for the Department of Defense (DoD) and the American national security apparatus writ large.

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