Maj. Gen. Susan Lawrence

Netcom, GNEC directives transform Army LandWarNet

C4ISR insight from Maj. Gen. Susan Lawrence

Editor’s Note: The evolution of C4ISR initiatives was affected by a variety of decisions this year. At the same time, efforts to improve upon the technologies that support the warfighter, including command, control, communications and computers and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance systems, gained new urgency.

Defense Systems asked a number of senior military officers and Pentagon personnel to answer the question: What was the most important C4ISR development of the past year and why as part of a broader year-end assessment on C4ISR developments. Following is the response from Maj. Gen. Susan Lawrence, commanding general of the Army's Network Enterprise Technology Command/9th Signal Command.

“For the Network Enterprise Technology Command/9th Signal Command (Army), the most important development wasn’t the introduction of a new piece of technology or software or database. It was the March 2009 Army Chief of Staff directive designating Netcom as the Army's sole IT service provider and the lead for operationalizing the Global Network Enterprise Construct (GNEC). This directive, along with an earlier one that shifted the Army post/camp/station IT support mission from [Installation Management Command] to Netcom, will transform the Army LandWarNet into a truly global enterprise."

“GNEC is the Army’s strategy to realign and transform network assets and will fundamentally change the way the Army manages C4I by improving defensive capabilities and effectiveness while at the same time gaining resource efficiencies through a set of common standards and configurations."

“It is more than a change in management, though. It's a transformation in culture. The cultural change — being effected in partnership with the Army’s chief information officer/G-6, the program executive office community, and the CIOs of the Army’s various commands and agencies — involves placing the warfighter at the heart of the network."

“It requires the construction of an enterprise that engineers in warfighter requirements from the start, that focuses on reinforcing a trust relationship between the soldier and the IT service provider, and that provides a network that is seamless, universal and reliable. The organizational changes affecting Netcom during the last year have set the stage for building this kind of enterprise: a structure that will deliver a global network enterprise from the desktop to the foxhole.”

About the Author

Barry Rosenberg is editor-in-chief of Defense Systems. Follow him on Twitter: @BarryDefense.

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