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Title: A Rendezvous with Discretion: An Analysis of Federal Simplified Acquisition Procedure Contracts
Authors: Benjamin Brunjes
Keywords: Analysis
Federal Simplified Acquisition
Issue Date: 30-Mar-2020
Publisher: Acquisition Research Program
Citation: Published--Unlimited Distribution
Series/Report no.: Acquisition Procedure Contracts;SYM-AM-20-054
Abstract: Scholars have long argued about the role of discretion in public administration. For some, discretion is a means of applying needed expertise in administration, while others view discretion as a departure from democratic priorities. As administration becomes more complex, discretion is becoming more important for public managers. This paper assesses how federal contracting officials use discretion afforded via simplified acquisition procedures (SAP) to influence equity and performance. Findings indicate that when using discretion, contracting officials are less likely to select minority-owned and small businesses despite a preference for these vendors under SAP. However, SAP contracts are much less likely to terminate early than other contracts, indicating that federal contracting officials may use their discretion to improve contractor performance. This suggests that when using discretion, contracting officials may prioritize efficiency goals over equity concerns.
Description: Acquisition Management / Defense Acquisition Community Contributor
Appears in Collections:Annual Acquisition Research Symposium Proceedings & Presentations

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