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Maria Roat on Upcoming Federal Data Strategy 2021 Action Plan

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Maria Roat
Maria Roat Deputy Federal CIO

Maria Roat, deputy federal chief information office and a 2020 Wash100 Award winner, said the 2021 Action Plan of the Federal Data Strategy is expected to put emphasis on efforts to advance data skills training, mature data management and strengthen cross-agency collaboration, GovernmentCIO Media and Research reported Tuesday. Roat said agencies will continue efforts to mature data governance in 2021.

“Even though 2020 was a foundational year, we’re building on that foundation in 2021,” Roat said. “We recognize the agencies have diverse needs, resources; they have different missions. So even as we’re looking at the execution of all of those milestones, we have to keep in mind that agencies are at different levels of maturity.” 

Roat said she hopes agencies will set a goal of coming up with master data management programs and that agencies will continue to advance efforts to address the data skills gap.

“Whether it’s just data skills in general or overall data science, there’s going to be continued emphasis, because regardless of your job, you use data, and understanding the importance of that data, the quality of data and what could be done to improve it,” Roat said. “Increasing staff data skills is going to continue to be a push.”

She also called on agencies to assess the quality of their data assets and their inventories to inform their strategic planning efforts.