The HSSEDI Difference

Patrol vehicle in mountains

The Homeland Security Systems Engineering and Development Institute—or HSSEDI™—is a federally funded research and development center (FFRDC) sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) through its Science and Technology Directorate (S&T). DHS established the HSSEDI FFRDC to serve as its primary systems engineering resource and to meet DHS-wide demand for rapid access to deep technical expertise.

  • As an FFRDC strictly governed by federal acquisition regulations, HSSEDI does not manufacture products or compete against commercial firms.
  • HSSEDI is free from the organizational conflicts of interest and the pressures of competition that face commercial contractors.
  • HSSEDI has long-term, trusted relationships across DHS. We have been working across DHS since its inception to support acquisitions, provide advice for critical programs, and contribute to decision making.
  • HSSEDI provides institutional memory and helps to further mature (develop, establish, grow) and integrate capabilities across the organization.

How Does Systems Engineering Help Homeland Security?

Systems engineering employs analytic practices and tools to address complex problems holistically. It is essential to integrate people, processes, and technology across DHS, which is a complex organization working with many different stakeholders and partners. HSSEDI systems engineers focus on the entire DHS enterprise and the organization's many underlying systems and processes. By using systems engineering, DHS can:

  • Shape programs and align technology to support the operational and mission needs of: Customs and Border Protection, Citizenship and Immigration Services, the Coast Guard, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Secret Service, Transportation Security Administration, and DHS headquarters offices.
  • Determine how individual systems in the enterprise perform and affect each other.
  • Evaluate alternative technologies and processes that can enhance cost-effectiveness and performance.
  • Identify ways in which capabilities can be acquired and deployed faster, better, and less expensively.
  • Analyze, explain, and justify costs.
  • Identify mission and operational risks and assess mitigation approaches.
  • Develop and implement the processes and governance required to make investment decisions and support business planning and policy making.
  • Provide oversight bodies with the rationale, supported by analyses, for budget requirements.
  • Assess situations, identify problems early, and select alternatives before problems escalate.

HSSEDI provides institutional memory and helps to further mature (develop, establish, grow) and integrate capabilities across the organization.