Top Management and the Selection of Major Contractors at NASA

by Willard Zangwill

Fall 1969

Volume 12
Issue 1

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At National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the process of evaluating and selecting a major contractor is termed the Source Evaluation Board (SEB) process. With the enormous amounts of money involved and the inherent difficulty of making procurements requiring, new and exotic technology, it is an extremely important process. The Administrator himself, in concert with the two other top NASA officials, culminates it by making the final choice of a contractor. But the SEB process is more than just a means to select contractors, for it implements top management philosophy and policy, it educates and evaluates personnel, it extends the top administrators' purview to NASA's outer extremities, it fosters NASA industry relations, etc. In brief, the SEB process has become a key management toot, and this article presents a detailed analysis of top management's activities in the process. To place the SEB process in perspective and to understand fully how top management uses the pro- cess, we must first become cognizant of NASA's size and scope.

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