OMB Deputy Director for Management Margaret Wiechert addresses White House Data Roundtable. Photo by Beth Beck

Jason Duley and I attended a Roundtable to discuss how best to leverage data as a strategic asset, one of the goals of this Administration. Federal agencies, state and local governments, NGO's and industry came together to identify challenges and successes with federal data to deliver our stated missions, serve our customers, and steward often scarce resources. Office of Management and Budget Deputy Director for Management, Margaret Weichert, kicked off the morning session, along with opening remarks by Susette Kent, Federal Chief Information Officer, and Nancy Potok, U.S. Chief Statistician. Personally, I was pleased to see so many prominent women leading the charge for strategic data initiatives. NASA Datanauts, we have great role models in the government for you!

Dr Beth Beck and Jason Duley attend White House Data Roundtable

The President's Management Agenda has four strategies, described below. 

Strategy 1: Enterprise Data Governance

This strategy seeks to "set priorities for managing government data as a strategic asset, including establishing data policies, specifying roles and responsibilities for data privacy, security, and confidentiality protection, and monitoring compliance with standards and policies throughout the information lifecycle."

Strategy 2: Access, Use, and Augmentation

This strategy targets the development of "policies and procedures that enable stakeholders to effectively and efficiently access and use data assets by: 

  1. making data available more quickly and in more useful formats;
  2. maximizing the amount of non-sensitive data shared with the public;
  3. leveraging new technologies and best practices to increase access to sensitive or restricted data while protecting privacy, security, and confidentiality, and the interests of data providers."
Strategy 3: Decision-Making and Accountability

This strategy focuses on how to "improve the use of data assets for decision-making and accountability for the Federal Government, including both internal and external uses. This includes:

  1. providing high quality and timely information to inform evidence-based decision-making and learning;
  2. facilitating external research on the effectiveness of government programs and policies which will inform future policymaking; and
  3. fostering public accountability and transparency by providing accurate and timely spending information, performance metrics, and other administrative data."
Strategy 4: Commercialization, Innovation, and Public Use

The final strategy seeks to "facilitate the use of Federal Government data assets by external stakeholders at the forefront of making government data accessible and useful through commercial ventures, innovation, or other public uses."

White House coffee cup and chocolates. photo by Beth BeckIn my 33-year career in the federal government, I've served six Presidents. I have to say that it never gets old going to a White House function. As a political scientist, this is what I geek out over. I'm feel so honored to have served my country for three decades as a civil servant, and how awesome that NASA is where I landed. For the topic of data as a strategic asset, I believe our data is "out-of-this-world"...literally...and offers tremendous value to citizens around the world. As an open data agency by design, we continue to work on ways to make our data accessible and usable so that others can explore knowledge in new ways by leveraging what we've discovered about the universe. We have a great team at NASA who care about making sure you have what you need. 

Dr. Beth Beck and Jason Duley at WhitevHouse Data Round Table

We love NASA data AND taking cheesy pictures in front of the White House!! I'll be watching from the sidelines (once I turn in my NASA badge next week) as you all create new data awesomeness. May the force be with you.

About Beth

Open Innovation Program Manager

NASA Headquarters