I recently had the pleasure of participating in a virtual panel discussion organized by Government Marketing University titled, "Fusing Government and Industry: Event Go or No Go." The webinar looked at the current reality of in-person event planning and attendance using research findings as well as anecdotal observations and experiences.
Market Connections conducted a survey of government event attendees in January to get a pulse on their appetite for attending face-to-face (F2F) events. The findings of this research echoed the responses we received to our most recent survey. People are slowly but surely reintroducing in-person events into their schedules and planning. The latest survey found 40% of respondents plan to attend at least one in-person event in 2022. This is a considerable jump from the 25% that reported attending a 2021 event.Continue reading →
The government is at no loss for data. And, over the last decade, there has been a concerted effort to use that data more efficiently to improve decision making and service to the citizen. Chief Data Officers are in place across government to shepherd the changes in process and technology needed to achieve the goals set forth in the Federal Data Strategy.
Meeting the Plan to Plan
Department-level data strategies have been borne out of the federal guidance to mature data governance and infrastructure and publish those plans. In fact, the report "CDO Insights: 2021 Survey Results On the Maturation of Data Governance in U.S. Federal Agencies," found that 75 percent of respondents said they had started or completed five of the six action items named in the Federal Data Strategy 2020 Action Plan. The report found that constituting a data governance body (completed by 75%) was the least challenging action. Getting these bodies in place means that beyond department-level plans, some agencies are moving to making plans for critical subsets of data much like the State Department did for geospatial data.
Remote work, necessitated by the pandemic, accelerated many agencies' move to cloud computing. With remote and dispersed teams here to stay, cloud is a critical, if not primary, infrastructure for a number of organizations. With this wide reliance on cloud, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has been releasing Trusted Internet Connections 3.0 Use Cases, which give federal agencies guidance on applying network and multi-boundary security for remote users.
Similarly, the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) recently combined its Cloud Computing Program Office (CCPO) with its services directorate and ecosystem. This move, creating the Hosting and Compute Center (HaCC), recognizes the long-term reality of cloud and the role it plays in delivering services and powering everyday work for the agency. The HaCC will be "responsible for providing the warfighter with critical hosting and compute functions using modern data center and cloud capabilities." This functionality supports a number of Defense Department initiatives including Joint All Domain Command and Control.Continue reading →
Artificial Intelligence (AI) allows tasks that typically require human intelligence to be completed at machine speed. For government agencies, this means that they can make better use of the troves of data they hold for daily decision making, strategic planning, and citizen service.
Protecting the Bat Population
Bats are a critical part of the natural ecosystems as pollinators and in their role of natural insect extermination. However, many bats are at risk due to habitat loss. When they lose their natural habitat, many take to bridges as a new home, causing potential damage and even posing health hazards.
The Biden Administration recently issued its request for 2022 spending. This practice is really more of a policy effort than actual budgeting, but serves to illustrate administration priorities to inform agencies as to what is likely to get approved in the final budget. The 2022 budget request has a number of IT-specific priorities, starting with the funding of the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF) at another $500 million for fiscal 2022. This would be in addition to the $1 billion that was invested as part of the American Rescue Plan Act--money that helped support the ongoing effort to digitize government services and operations.
The $58.4 billion in IT spending includes marked increases in the IT budgets of the Treasury Department, Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Department of Homeland Security. NASA and the Department of Commerce had small reductions to its IT budgets.