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Immediate Release

Statement by Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen H. Hicks Marking One Year of the Defense Department's Chief Digital and Artificial Intelligence Office (CDAO)

When the Department of Defense stood up the Chief Digital and AI Office (CDAO) last summer, our intent was to accelerate DoD's adoption of data, analytics, and AI from boardroom to battlefield, because of how essential these technologies are to staying ahead in the strategic competition for the 21st century. 

Just over one year later, we're seeing the impact of bringing four powerful DoD organizations together to craft policies, develop capabilities, collaborate with industry, and innovate at speed and scale for the warfighter.

Here are just a few examples: 

•    Cleaner datasets are fueling AI models and machine learning algorithms to more rapidly detect specific maritime targets and acoustic signatures; 

•    Tens of thousands more personnel are using business performance metrics, helping senior leaders measure outcomes more rapidly across DoD;

•    Military commanders are collaborating with teams of data scientists that we've deployed at every Combatant Command to work on problems that our warfighters find most vexing, while integrating data across applications, systems, and users;

•    The creation of a data integration layer for Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control (CJADC2) is making us even better than we already are at joint operations and combat integration;

•    We're conducting an ongoing series of Global Information Dominance Experiments that are advancing the digital infrastructure of AI systems, data-centric workflows, and C2 concepts, taking the U.S. military's decision advantage superiority to the next level. 

I've seen clearly over the last year that our investments in data and AI are yielding returns much faster than most new defense capabilities. We don't have to wait multiple years or a decade for them to bear fruit; they're producing and delivering for the warfighter in the here and now, in matters of months, weeks, and even days. 

As CDAO embarks on its second year, I know it will only contribute more to our military's enduring advantage.