State Department seeks website for country performance analytics

State Department wants a website for country performance analytics

The State Department wants to set up an interactive, web-based databank of performance indicators of foreign countries that could be used by agencies to analyze data and perform comparative analysis and data-driven problem solving.

Development of the tool responds to “business needs identified by multiple U.S. government agencies,” according to statement of work, which called the current approach to data processing as “labor-intensive, error prone and non-standardized.”

State’s centralized databank would help agencies make informed decisions related to other countries and establish “performance indicators for common use in comparative analysis for stakeholders internal and external to the U.S. government,” the SOW said.

The web format would also reduce costs by avoiding duplicate efforts to vet and standardize data, according to the plan. Another aim is to “improve the use of third-party data by enabling users to visualize data, perform customized analyses, and share analytic approaches among policy makers.”

Other requirements envisioned for the project include the ability to ingest data from approximately 30 third-party sources, including the World Bank, the United Nations and non-governmental organizations. The data would consist of approximately 300 indicators, or around 1.8 million data points. The system should also have the ability to support 250 concurrent users with minimal latency.

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Reader Comments

Tue, Jul 29, 2014 Owen Ambur Silver Spring, MD

Eventually, performance indicators that are matters of public record should be published on the Web in an open, standard, machine-readable format like StratML Part 2, Performance Plans and Reports. Section 10 of the GPRA Modernization Act (GPRAMA) already requires the Department of State to publish its strategic and performance plans and reports in machine-readable format. So it would be good if this new capability could be used to analyze the Department's own performance metrics and not merely those of other countries. At least the Department should avoid creating yet another in a long line of data stovepipe performance reporting "dashboard" -- by using the applicable open data standard.

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