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NEWS ROOM   |   Press Releases

For immediate release: August 23, 2012
Meghan Penning

Is Big Data a Big Deal for State Governments?

LEXINGTON, Ky., Thursday, August 23 — The volume and velocity of data creation is at an all-time high – and is accelerating. State government is a veritable data engine creating vast amounts of data from a variety of sources. The sky is the limit in terms of future data generation based on the growth in cloud services, mobile applications, sensors, transparency demands and the growing public private-partnerships that must be monitored for performance and service levels, according to NASCIO’s latest issue brief on analytics, “Is Big Data a Big Deal?” The brief is available at

“Big data is certainly important. But in these economic times, potential investment in big data technologies, process and discipline is competing for limited budget dollars with other essential initiatives such as legacy modernization, consolidation, deployment of mobile applications, cyber security and statewide broadband connectivity,” said Carolyn Parnell, co-chair for the NASCIO Enterprise Architecture and Governance Committee and chief information officer for the State of Minnesota. “We need to evaluate the need and the desired outcomes for any investment, including investment in big data. We need clear intentions regarding how we will use any data or information and then determine how best to drive efficiencies in other areas to help us better manage and mine the data we have.”

This brief contributes to NASCIO’s series on analytics in state government. Part III presents some of the issues, challenges and opportunities of big data in state government, emphasizing the concept of “issue management” as foundational when considering big data. States should be anticipating big data as an important resource to employ for monitoring and improving existing government services, and discovering new facts and correlations.

“We need to be clear about what we mean when we use the term ‘big data.’ It’s more than just large volumes of data,” said Jack Doane, co-chair for the NASCIO Enterprise Architecture and Governance Committee and director for the Information Services Division in Alabama. “The promise of big data and the potential economic growth opportunities are significant. To actually reach that potential, big data initiatives must be governed and managed like any other data and information asset through formal data management within state government enterprise architecture.”

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers is the premier network and resource for state CIOs and a leading advocate for technology policy at all levels of government. NASCIO represents state chief information officers and information technology executives from the states, territories, and the District of Columbia. The primary state government members are senior officials who have executive level and statewide responsibility for information technology leadership. State officials who are involved in agency level information technology management may participate as state members. Representatives from other public sector and non-profit organizations may also participate as associate members. Private sector firms may join as corporate members and participate in the Corporate Leadership Council. For more information about NASCIO visit

AMR Management Services provides NASCIO’s executive staff. For more information about AMR visit


Eric Sweden MSIH MBA
Program Director, Enterprise Architecture & Governance
National Association of State Chief Information Officers
(859) 514-9189

Shawn Vaughn
Membership and Communications Coordinator
National Association of State Chief Information Officers
(859) 514-9156

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