Kshemendra Paul's picture

Fork It, Grab It, Use It: Announcing Project Interoperability

This week, we’re launching Project Interoperability, a collaborative, participatory, and transparent start-up guide for information interoperability across all aspects of government and the private sector.

Information interoperability is the ability to transfer and use information in a consistent, efficient way across multiple organizations and IT systems.  From a technical perspective, interoperability is fostered through the consistent application of design principles and design standards to address a specific mission problem.

Projects like the New Jersey Information Sharing Environment have used a variety of tools and best practices – such as NIEM, federal identity management, and Springboard – to enhance their information interoperability capabilities. These tools have always been available to the public, but now we’re packaging and disseminating them for broader use by the community. We are anchoring them under the Standards Coordinating Council.

We are taking the process outside of the four walls of government in order to increase the effectiveness of the community. These tools aren’t new. They’ve been distilled from a decade of terrorism information sharing.

The goal of Project Interoperability is to help government and the private sector identify a baseline of terms, tools and techniques to create an information sharing network in mission-agnostic terms and for any type of information sharing. We are trying to normalize the way information sharing technology is developed. If we’re all using different terms to achieve interoperability capabilities, we aren’t going to end up with interoperable systems, and we’re going to pay for duplicative systems and excessive costs. 

Information interoperability is important because it increases timely information sharing, can reduce costs and redundancy, and leverage best practices– all steps to improve decision-making for government leaders, industry, and citizens.

On the blog tomorrow: how Project Interoperability reflects the President’s open government agenda, and how we’re using GitHub as our collaborative headquarters.

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