Year One Fed Data Strategy and CDO Council Coming Soon, Says Fed CIO Kent

A “year one strategy” on the Federal Data Strategy and a Chief Data Officer (CDO) council, like the Chief Information Officer (CIO) council, are almost ready for release, according to Federal CIO Suzette Kent.

At NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference on Nov. 5, Kent said that the year one action plan “will be out very soon” and the CDO council should be operational in the “next 12 months.” Because of the close relationship between data management and AI legislation, both feats should help the Federal government continue to develop its automation capabilities.

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“We’re very focused on that balance between open and available and privacy and security,” Kent said. “In some cases, we need massive volumes of data and data from different places, so we need to continue to be attentive to how we might create that and how we might protect that.”

National Science Foundation (NSF) CIO Dorothy Aronson further explained that the future of Federal AI will be closely tied to the development of the CDO role.

“The conversation about data is highly integrated into the CIO world, but it’s also shifting into the CDO conversation,” Aronson said. “I thought the Evidence Act was brilliant and I don’t usually say that about law,” she noted, citing the law that requires each Federal agency to designate a Chief Data Officer and established the CDO Council within the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

As agencies work toward data and AI goals, the Federal CIO also praised teamwork amongst Federal agencies.

“One of the things that is exciting to me, and interesting about AI, is that it forces agencies to be more collaborative,” Kent said. “As we’re building the muscles and we’ve got usable data…how do we make that a part of our business processes? That’s the harder work.”

According to Kent, the forthcoming year one strategy will include AI success stories around Federal agencies in order to showcase Federal government talent.

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