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TechAmerica Big Data commission to examine its role in public sector

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

TechAmericaThe TechAmerica Foundation says that some of the foremost thinkers in “Big Data” will lead a commission of 22 experts and academics to examine the issue and provide guidance on how to leverage “Big Data” to address the most pressing issues facing government as well as drive U.S. innovation and competitiveness.

Chairing the commission will be Steve Mills, Senior Vice President and Group Executive at IBM and Steve Lucas, Global Executive Vice President and General Manager, Database & Technology at SAP. Serving as vice chairs of the commission are Teresa Carlson, Vice President Global Public Sector, Amazon Web Services and Bill Perlowitz, Chief Technology Officer, Science, Technology and Engineering Group, Wyle.

“The problem today is not gathering data, but rather making intelligent actionable decisions based on the volume, velocity and variety of data we are receiving. I am excited about launching this Commission and hope that we can leverage the best and brightest industry, academic and government minds to determine how to use big data to drive innovation, efficiencies and effectiveness in the public sector,” said Jennifer Kerber, President of the TechAmerica Foundation.

Big Data is a hot topic for the technology community and is becoming a focal point for government with the Administration recently announcing a $200 Million Big Data Research and Development Initiative.

A new era of computing

“We are entering a new era of computing where information is growing at a record pace. The winners and losers will be those who can innovate faster based on strategic insights drawn from the variety and velocity of new forms of big data being generated every day,” said Steve Mills.

“By gaining deeper insights into this vast new natural resource, the opportunities to accelerate the pace of discovery in science and engineering and develop information-intensive curriculum is unlimited.

“The world’s data is doubling every 18 months, presenting government and industry with new opportunities to transform information into insight,” said Steve Lucas.

“New database technologies and applications, coupled with real time analysis of big data, will help business and government run better and ultimately improve the well-being of customers and citizens. By bringing private sector innovation to the public sector, the Big Data Commission will help leaders address some of the biggest questions facing government today.”

Issues it will address

The Commission expects to also take up such issues as: what capabilities are required to succeed? How do you use Big Data to make intelligent decisions?

How will agencies effectively govern and secure huge volumes of information, while protecting privacy and civil liberties? And perhaps most importantly, how do we use big data to transform how the government delivers services?

“The federal government is under increasing pressure to innovate and do more with less,” said Teresa Carlson. “The U.S federal government has been among the most forward leaning in taking advantage of the benefits of the cloud and Big Data.”

“Big Data has the potential to increase efficiency, improve the speed and accuracy of decisions, forecast the future, identify savings, increase transparency, create jobs, and provide insight into our agencies and citizenry; this is a hugely disruptive force occurring during challenging economic times. To transform hindsight to insight and remain competitive, we must immediately address the technical, cultural, organizational, and policy challenges data poses and embrace the relentless increase in available data,” said Bill Perlowitz.

The commission membership is made up of leading experts on big data and represent both industry and academia — the full list of members can be found here.

To learn more about the TechAmerica Foundation’s Big Data Commission: http://www.techamericafoundation.org/big-data-commission

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