Software Engineering Institute | Carnegie Mellon University
Software Engineering Institute | Carnegie Mellon University

Acquisition Support

The SEI works directly with federal defense and civil programs. Teams of acquirers, developers, and operators help government navigate the complexities of acquiring increasingly complex software and systems.


Increasingly, the Department of Defense (DoD) and federal agencies acquire software-intensive systems instead of building them with internal resources. However, acquisition programs frequently have difficulty meeting aggressive cost, schedule, and technical objectives.

The SEI works directly with key acquisition programs to help them achieve their objectives. Teams of SEI technical experts work in actual acquisition environments in the Army, Navy, and Air Force, as well as other DoD and civil agencies, applying SEI products and services in specific contexts.

Our vision is to facilitate the rapid establishment of agile teams composed of acquirers, developers, and operators using SEI technologies to provide evolutionary, high-quality, cutting-edge software-intensive capabilities to the warfighter.

Acquisition program managers are challenged not only to grasp practical business concerns, but also to understand topics as diverse as risk identification and mitigation, selection and integration of commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) components, process capability, program management, architecture, survivability, interoperability, source selection, and contract monitoring. The SEI has spent more than two decades compiling a body of knowledge and developing solutions for these topics.

The SEI is focused on direct interaction with the defense, intelligence, and federal acquisition communities by

  • transitioning technologies and practices to improve DoD software-intensive systems
  • performing diagnostics such as Independent Technical Assessments (ITAs) and Independent Expert Program Reviews (IEPRs)
  • helping with RFP preparation
  • helping with technical evaluations of proposals and deliverables
  • collaboratively developing acquisition technologies and practices
  • transitioning technologies and practices to the DoD acquisition community's collaborators
  • reviewing and advising the DoD on acquisition policy related to software-intensive systems

We Can Help

The SEI is focused on delivery, support, and integration of software-intensive systems acquisition practices to help acquisition program offices. The SEI is positioning itself as a facilitator and leader of a community of practice for the acquisition of software-intensive systems.