Virginia governor orders review of state’s data sharing efforts

Gov. Terry McAuliffe is hoping to get a handle on how his state is already sharing information to improve its processes down the line.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe is ordering a statewide review of how the state’s agencies can better share data, both internally and with the public.

McAuliffe signed an executive directive on the issue Monday, with the ultimate goal of understanding how state workers are already sharing information and what changes agencies can make to better smooth future data-sharing and open data projects.

“Smarter use of data and data analytics will help state agencies be more efficient in administering programs and it will enhance our stewardship of the public funds entrusted to the commonwealth,” McAuliffe said in a statement. “It also will allow state government to more efficiently and effectively address issues of concern to our citizens, including public health, public safety and education.”

The governor’s order charges state Chief Information Officer Nelson Moe to work with Secretary of Technology Karen Jackson and Secretary of Finance Ric Brown on the review. Specifically, they’ll be charged with examining “all commonwealth systems, practices, processes, policies, applicable laws and regulations governing the sharing of data across agencies.”


[Read more: Virginia governor unveils broadband access survey, signs fiber infrastructure bill]

They’ll have until Oct. 15 to deliver McAuliffe to ”create an inventory of state agencies’ data analytics assets, capabilities, best practices and data sharing activities” and a report covering “all legal, privacy and governance concerns” around data sharing.

The governor is also hoping that report will include recommendations on how the state can use open data and information sharing projects to save money and be more transparent.

Additionally, the administration officials will have to develop “a common data sharing lexicon and terminology to eliminate friction and confusion among state agencies” as part of the final report.

“Solid data and analysis of that data is essential to making sound decisions that are in the best interest of the citizens of the commonwealth,” Jackson said in a statement. “The actions in this directive will empower the commonwealth to be more strategic in how we examine, leverage and protect data across agencies”


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