Preparing Government for the Data and Information Needs of the 21st Century – Summary Report
In the digital era of information superabundance, the challenge for governments is clear: how will they put in place the processes, frameworks and capabilities to manage this information and data so that it meets growing and complex needs and expectations?
Chief Information Officers (CIOs) and Information Management/Information Technology (IM/IT) specialists have done their best to put generic “safety net” solutions in place to meet complex business requirements. But policy makers and program managers are now important players in the information and data game. New, contemporary requirements and challenges have emerged that will expand in urgency and importance. The burning issues of government, from accountability to open government to security and privacy, are largely contingent on the information and data insights of program managers and policy makers.
In today’s data-rich world, everyone is an information steward. The traditional mandated imperatives of technology solutions and compliance must be expanded beyond CIOs and IM/IT specialists to those who run the business of government. Thus, CIOs, IM/IT specialists need to collaborate with policy and program managers to find appropriate solutions if government is to build the necessary information capacities and change agenda for the 21st century. Consequently, the roles, responsibilities, and accountabilities of all players must be more precisely defined, beyond those of IM/IT specialists.
Digital information leaders from the public service, academia, and consulting firms were invited to the Institute on Governance (IOG) on May 1, 2014, to network, exchange ideas, and gauge interest in establishing a continuing dialogue or community of interest related to information management (IM) in a digital age. This unique consultation event, held jointly by the IOG and On Second Thought Advisory (OSTA), brought together a range of public service, private sector, and academic communities including program managers, policy makers, CIOs and IM/IT specialists to ask them a simple question: how can we work together to create a sustainable change agenda that connects data and information technologies and management with the program and policy needs of government?
This report provides a summary of the discussion that took place during the breakout sessions and plenary discussion at this event, as well as proposes specific next steps as a course of action.