We're in the midst of another tough economic year. That's clear across the board for anyone who doesn't have his or her head in the sand, or in the clouds. Pick your metaphor here, but in either case it's a reality that almost all IT professionals and business managers are battling a continued tough slog through rough fiscal terrain. This issue of Cutter Benchmark Review is thus an especially important one in its relevance to the very real challenges that we all face these days. It is the sixth installment in our annual series on IT budgeting, and we are now beginning to amass enough critical year-over-year data to truly evaluate some longer-term trends. The insight that our expert contributors were able to glean from this data and present to you in this issue will undoubtedly prove both interesting and instructive as you compare these trends with the decisions made within your own organizations.