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Realizing the Promise of Big Data


Big data is increasing in importance for public agencies, and big data programs are expected to become more prominent in the near future, is the finding of a new report.

The Realizing the Promise of Big Data report, states that through the use of big data, analytics now holds great promise for increasing the efficiency of operations, mitigating risks, and increasing citizen engagement and public value, states the report.

Released by the IBM, the report is based on extensive interviews with chief information officers (CIOs) across the United States at the federal, state, and local level. The goal of the interviews was to better understand the implementation challenges facing CIOs and their organizations as they undertake big data projects.

Big data is a new frontier for the public sector”, writes author Kevin C.Souza. “Agencies realize that their datasets represent critical resources that need to be managed and leveraged. Public sector use of big data and big data analytics is wide-ranging; some organizations have no experience with big data, while others have taken on small to moderate-sized projects.

The report presents 10 key findings from the CIO interviews:

  • Public agencies are in the early days of their big data efforts
  • Many CIOs fight the perception that big data is a passing fad
  • Most CIOs are now primarily dealing with the issue of managing large volumes of data, integrating data across database systems, and building an analytical capacity to mine data
  • CIOs report that some big data projects are now focused on streamlining business processes
  • CIOs do not anticipate significant investments in technology
  • CIOs report a need to bolster their human capital, including their analytical capability
  • CIOs are now exploring approaches to data governance
  • CIOs do not recommend IT units as owners of big data projects
  • CIOs believe that collaborative leadership is crucial for the success of big data projects and recommend the creation of working groups to oversee projects
  • CIOs are becoming champions of analytics and evidence-driven decisionmaking.

Read the full report.