Back to Hub

Public Spend Forum: ML & AI RFIs and Ravens on Mars

02/05/2021 By

Public Spend Forum (PSF) is a public sector procurement global community and market intelligence platform dedicated to improving public buying everywhere. GovShop is its free-to-use global government market research tool for finding and connecting with suppliers. Here’s the latest from PSF:

GSA: taking advantage of industry with its ML & AI RFIs

Based on a Naval Postgraduate report from March 2019, companies spend over 1400 hours each year replying to government RFIs. If you do the calculation, even the most basic labor rates, and the annual economic cost of this transfer of effort approaches one million dollars. As a former contracting officer, Frank McNally of Public Spend Forum has mixed feelings about RFIs. On one hand, companies that want to win lucrative contracts should expect some degree of effort, and RFIs can be an effective tool for both parties. On the other hand, it’s expensive to bid on government contracts and when we transfer the market research effort to contractors, we’re adding overhead that just gets passed back to government. Market research is a time-consuming chore, hunting down supplier info on myriad public sector databases isn’t how anyone wants to spend their time. So Frank explains how they created GovShop to consolidate all those sites and provide government contracting professionals with a “high resolution view” of a supplier’s capability and key demographic data. Read why he likes GSA’s AI/ML RFI here.

Drone Take-off in Iceland and Mars

RAVEN is a rover cum drone that may just be the future of space exploration, also known as Rover-Aerial Vehicle Exploration Networks. NASA has awarded more than $3 million to a group led by Christopher Hamilton at the Lunar Planetary Laboratory to specialize in drones that would provide data and access to areas inaccessible to rovers, identify targets of interest, and help find paths through difficult terrain. Hamilton’s crew went to Iceland to work on the concept at the Holuhraun lava flow field, similar to the surface of Mars. Read more from Talia Semann on emerging tech.

Symposium on barriers to entry in government markets 

Public Spend Forum will release the results of its study on Barriers to Entry in Government Markets in an upcoming online symposium. The agenda includes a review of tech study results, a panel discussion, and case study presentations on solutions. PSF will also welcome Maj. General Cameron Holt, deputy assistant secretary for contracting, US Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, to share his insights on the challenges suppliers face in the public sector and the actions government agencies can take to reduce those barriers. The event takes place on February 25, 1.00 pm EST, 6.00 pm GMT and you can find the full agenda and register here.

Public safety: PSF/AWS technology showcase

Public Spend Forum and Amazon Web Services are holding a technology showcase. As commercial technology advances and changes the way society operates, it is critical that public safety ecosystems keep pace. Citizens expect government and first responders to use real-time information and intelligence – IoT, mobile devices, analytics, AI/ML – in order to accelerate and improve emergency response. In this unique event you will learn about public safety use cases in government and public safety technologies that are paving the way. Safe Tech and Responder Labs will join in to share their expertise on February 11, 12.00 pm noon EST, 5.00 pm GMT. See the full agenda here.


And in other news …

UK public sector to embrace a hybrid cloud strategy

How US government procurement can lead the clean economy

Row breaks out over UK government’s “dependence” on AWS

Port53 unveils platform that empowers cybersecurity pros to shape their oranizations’ threat postures

Power of Procurement: Nordic Cities declare joint statement on demand toward fair, circular smartphones

Transparency International releases Corruption Perceptions Index

UK Gov updates guidance on the Technology Code of Practice on when to buy and when to build

NYT: health care workers still face daunting shortages of masks and other PPE and UK Gov releases experimental statistics about PPE items distributed to health and social care services

EDF Nuclear Generation receives platinum award again for procurement excellence from CIPS

UK Parliamentary committee urges action to diversify 5G supply chain

Major IT firms added to cross-government strategic supplier list

Crown Commercial Services goes live with £800m NHS IT framework

Berlin’s €2B plan to wean off Huawei (Nokia and Ericsson too) proposes to invest in local telecoms


Contact Public Spend Forum

Contact if you’d like to understand more about public procurement, the effect of the pandemic, where to find suppliers for a specific category, or any other burning issue you have.

PSF would also love to hear from you if you have a success story within your organization you’d like to share. If you’d like to share your opinions or insight on a public-procurement-relevant issue please see the Guest Author Guidelines here.