FCC chairman: Use IT to improve collaboration

Federal Communications Commission officials want to improve the agency’s collaboration efforts by using several information technologies, acting chairman Michael Copps recently told FCC employees.

“The Digital Age means we are living at a time of communications convergence where wireless, wireline and video communications are more and more intertwined,” Copps said in a speech Jan. 26. “So too, must there be convergence within the FCC.”

The task of improving collaboration likely will be up to Julius Genachowski, President Barack Obama’s top technology adviser. Genachowski turned down the federal chief technology officer position in favor of the FCC chairmanship, according to several published reports. However, he has not been formally nominated for the post.

FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell endorsed Copps’ goal of improving collaboration, according to a letter published today. Updating the commission's technology systems will play an important role in improving communications and collaboration, McDowell said.

“The IT and Web systems are in dire need of an overhaul,” McDowell said. “Clear, concise and well-organized information systems will ensure that all public information is available, easily located and understandable.”

Copps said he does not plan to merge FCC’s offices to achieve the collaboration goals.

“Communications is as cross-cutting as anything can be, and the agency dealing with communications needs to be cross-cutting, too,” he said. “If we can’t communicate with ourselves, we shouldn’t have the word ‘communications’ in our title.”

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

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