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New initiative aims to solve problems using data

New initiative aims to solve problems using data

By Pradeep Belur, SBA Official
Published: June 27, 2018

Could far-reaching challenges like the opioid crisis be solved with government data? A new initiative being pursued by a cross-section of government agencies is working to find out.

Leveraging Data as a Strategic Asset is a Cross-Agency Priority Goal of the President’s Management Agenda. This goal seeks to address big, national challenges by combining or examining government data in new and different ways. I am excited to co-lead this effort with Karen Dunn Kelley, Under Secretary at the Department of Commerce; Suzette Kent, Federal Chief Information Officer; Nancy Potok, Chief Statistician of the U.S.; and Jack Wilmer, Senior Advisor for Cybersecurity and IT Modernization, Office of Science and Technology Policy.

Today, the PMA released its first-quarter milestones related to this CAP Goal.

First, we are releasing a draft list of Principles for a Federal Data Strategy that emerged from discussions at a roundtable of experts held last month. They are based on existing principles related to the protection of personal information and the conduct of federal statistical agencies. We will solicit public input over the next 30 days to ensure the principles accurately reflect the ideals that should drive the Federal Data Strategy. We believe that stakeholder engagement is critical to developing a viable and sustainable strategy.

Second, we are releasing a call for use cases, which are examples of practices or methods that leverage data from the Federal Government to serve a public interest. This could include past practices, current issues or problems being resolved, or future issues or problems yet to be addressed. We are collecting real-world examples so we can identify the factors that lead to success, emulate successful solutions, and/or identify issues or problems that can foster collaboration across entities. 

Third, we are asking for information about best practices in data management and use related to the four key aspects of the Federal Data Strategy: Enterprise Data Governance; Access, Use, and Augmentation; Decision-Making and Accountability; and Commercialization, Innovation, and Public Use. Feedback received from agencies and the public will be used to hone the principles and practices of the Federal Data Strategy. 

Comments and information can be submitted through the site The final version of the principles will be released in October 2018 along with a draft version of data practices, at which time the public will have another opportunity for feedback. 

About the Author:

Pradeep Belur

SBA Official

Pradeep Belur serves as Chief of Staff to the Administrator of SBA.