Critical Read

How not to drown in your agency's data

Shutterstock image (by Tim Masters): okay sign emerging from a pile of shredded papers.

(Image: Tim Masters / Shutterstock)

What: "The Data Disclosure Decision," an open data case study from the Federal CIO Council's Innovation Committee.

Why: As government seeks to share more and more of the data it compiles, privacy protection and other concerns must be addressed in a proactive and well-structured manner. To help agencies chart a way forward, the Innovation Committee looked at how the Education Department, which for years has aggregated highly detailed data from states, school districts and individual schools, has structured its Disclosure Review Board.

The report details the challenges posed by the decentralized education data, the processes the department put in place, and the benefits that have been realized as a result.

Verbatim: The Education Department "created a Data Strategy Team to provide a forum to coordinate issues relating to data collection, data stewardship, and data governance. Disclosure Avoidance became a priority and a department-wide Data Release Working Group (DRWG) was formed."

Read the full report here.

About the Author

Troy K. Schneider is the Editor-in-Chief of both FCW and GCN, two of the oldest and most influential publications in public-sector IT. Both publications (originally known as Federal Computer Week and Government Computer News, respectively) are owned by GovExec. Mr. Schneider also serves GovExec's General Manager for Government Technology Brands.

Mr. Schneider previously served as New America Foundation’s Director of Media & Technology, and before that was Managing Director for Electronic Publishing at the Atlantic Media Company, where he oversaw the online operations of The Atlantic Monthly, National Journal, The Hotline and The Almanac of American Politics, among other publications. The founding editor of NationalJournal.com, Mr. Schneider also helped launch the political site PoliticsNow.com in the mid-1990s, and worked on the earliest online efforts of the Los Angeles Times and Newsday. He began his career in print journalism, and has written for a wide range of publications, including The New York Times, WashingtonPost.com, Slate, Politico, Governing, and many of the other titles listed above.

Mr. Schneider is a graduate of Indiana University, where his emphases were journalism, business and religious studies.

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