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Keywords:

  • acquisition reform;
  • real options;
  • investment analysis;
  • enterprise transformation;
  • public systems

Abstract

The acquisition of public sector complex systems is time-consuming, very expensive, and rife with uncertainties. The enterprise associated with acquisition is an excellent candidate for transformation— fundamental change to achieve substantially higher levels of value. This paper argues that choosing among alternative transformation initiatives should be based on an enterprise-wide perspective as well as systematic economic valuation of the alternative investments. An options-based methodology for assessing the economic value of alternative initiatives is presented and illustrated in the context of military ship building. © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Syst Eng 10: 99– 117, 2007