In the day to day operations of the Commonwealth, Virginia’s government agencies deal with an increasingly large amount of information. As storage methods have improved, the sheer amount of data has increased to new highs. Institutions need cutting-edge analytic tools to understand what they can learn from their particular data set.
The era of Big Data and Data Analytics has ushered in an exciting wave of new tools and businesses centered on providing meaningful analysis from the endless waves of new data. The Commonwealth can use these analyses to increase ROI of programs and services and improve citizen outcomes by being more data drive and evidenced based in policy and decision making.
Data Analysis is not new for the Commonwealth. The state has already undertaken several initiatives that utilize data analytics, such as the Virginia Longitudinal Data System (VLDS), which has facilitated data analysis on a diverse set of large datasets, including education and workforce development. The Governor’s office is partnering with our universities to bring great data analytic capabilities to our agencies to do more with our data to improve services and outcomes for our citizens.
Below are a few projects underway within the program:
All of these initiatives and many more show the capacity that data and analytics has to improve efficiency, performance and most importantly, to learn what the Commonwealth can do to best serve her citizens.
The Opportunity Project will put data and tools in the hands of civic leaders, community organizations, and families to help them navigate information about critical resources such as access to jobs, housing, transportation, schools, and other neighborhood amenities.The Opportunity Project Fact Sheet
Open data is all non-sensitive, public information that is made freely available for public use in an easily readable format. Open data empowers the public to unlock the value of the data. Citizens can develop mobile applications and other tools to use the information in ways which can translate into economic opportunity. The Commonwealth is committed to continue to grow the number of open datasets on the website.
The 2015 Datathon Challenge is a multi-tiered competition that will bring together teams of students, state employees, and professionals from across the Commonwealth as they create new applications that improve government. Top projects that use state data were selected during regional events held throughout Virginia and presented in September at the final Commonwealth Datathon event in Richmond.