Thursday, March 6, 2014
Articles from across the Web that we found interesting, the week of March 03, 2014

Gadi Ben-Yehuda

  • Presidential Innovation Fellows: The Results of Round Two Are in! Alex Howard has a write-up of the results of the second round of Presidential Innovation Fellows, as well as the invitation to apply to participate in the next iteration, when the program will focus on three topics: fueling data innovations, helping veterans attain the services available ot them, and improving government through crowdsourcing..
  • IT Spending Down in 2015 Budget Request. Joseph Marks of NextGov reports that "[f]unding for civilian information technology projects and maintenance is essentially flat in President Obama’s proposed budget for the 2015 fiscal year, and the Defense Department's requested technology allowance is down slightly, federal Chief Information Officer Steven VanRoekel said during a conference call on Tuesday." 
  • Learning about drugs. The Food and Drug Administration has launched an initiative called openFDA, which will "offer easy access to FDA public data and highlight projects using these data in both the public and private sector to further regulatory or scientific missions, educate the public, and save lives." The first areas of focus for openFDA are "adverse effects," "recalls," and "documentation."
  • Is there a future for wearables? I'm bullish on the health and health care implications of wearables.  But I've been wrong before. Fast CoDesign has a piece that is decidedly bearish on wearables.


John Kamensky

  • Budget Refreshes Management Agenda.  Charles Clark, Government Executive, summarizes the four key elements of President Obama’s management reform agenda.  More details are due out next week with the release of OMB’s “Analytical Perspectives” and updates on the website.
  • Budget Invests in the Federal WorkforceFedscoop reporter Colby Hochmuth describes how the president’s fiscal year 2015 budget “emphasized more significant investments in training, development and recruitment initiatives for the federal workforce.”  In addition, Jason Miller, Federal Times, interviewed OPM director Katherine Archuleta about these new initiatives.  She told him: “I'm meeting with each of the cabinet secretaries to talk about how OPM can help them get that done.”
  • Evidence-Based Government Reflected in Budget.  The President’s 2015 Budget continues the Administration’s efforts to build and use of evidence, and use innovative new approaches, to improve outcomes for the American people. OMB prepared a fact sheet that highlights some of the proposals in the Budget related to evidence, data and innovation. 
  • DOD IT Acquisition Reform Is a New Priority.  Amber Corin, Federal Times, writes: “Defense Department officials are pushing forward with plans to improve the ways they manage and buy information technology, including through reform efforts that accelerate timelines, improve management and maximize investment.”  Plans include “a so-called “IT Box” concept designed to provide better oversight and management of products, develop requirements and flesh out costs associated with system development, sustainment and operations.”
  • Nominations for Gellhorn Award for Agency Innovation.  The Administrative Conference of the U.S. annually sponsors a model federal agency innovative best practices award, the Walter Gellhorn Award.  Nominations are due April 17, 2014 for the next round of recognition, which will be announced in June.  Anyone can submit a nomination. Click here for background and details.
  • White House Calls for Open Government Plan Refresh. Jason Miller, Federal News Radio, writes: “The administration's open government initiative has been quiet after its initial push during the first two years of President Barack Obama's administration.”  He notes that “Chief Technology Officer Todd Park released a memo to agency leaders Feb. 24 detailing a series of new steps and updates to existing initiatives, including describing "bold, ambitious new open government initiatives for the coming two years."  Agency updated plans are due by June 1st


Michael Keegan

Pentagon seeks new out-of-pocket charges for TRICARE beneficiaries 
Family members of active duty service members and military retirees would see new fees under the Defense Department's proposal to consolidate TRICARE plans, as part of the fiscal 2015 budget request.

Now or Never: Ideas to Save the Failing Budget Process 
Federal News Radio's special report highlights best practices, real-life successes and research that could save time, money and sanity in federal budgeting, and give agencies and contractors the stability needed to help meet the missions of the government. 

Continuous monitoring is improving cybersecurity, but not without challenges 
Federal networks produce an astounding amount of data. Agencies are now trying to figure out how much of it to save, and for how long. 

IT spending dips slightly in Obama budget request 
All the net savings come on the defense side, where the request for IT funding is down about 6 percent from fiscal 2014 spending. 

The FY15 budget: IT spending breakdown 
The overall changes are modest compared to fiscal 2014, but many individual agency budgets see much larger swings. 

Watch out for 'boiler room' cloud brokers 
If cloud providers are also brokers, can an agency be sure its interests are put first? 

Feds seek info-sharing standards for private-sector data breaches 
Federal law enforcement officials say national reporting standards could help investigators uncover culprits. 


The Business of Government Radio Show: Dave Lebryk

The Business of Government Hour features a conversation about management with a government executive who is changing the way government.

David A. Lebryk was appointed the first Commissioner of the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service (Fiscal Service) on October 7, 2012, when the Financial Management Service (FMS) and the Bureau of the Public Debt consolidated into one bureau.

Commissioner Lebryk provides leadership, policy direction and guidance for the bureau’s debt financing and financial management programs. The bureau issues over one billion in federal payments worth $2.4 trillion to more than 100 million people; collects nearly $3.2 trillion in federal revenues each year; and collects more than $6.2 billion in delinquent debts.

Broadcast Schedule: The show airs Monday at 11 a.m., and Wednesday at noon, on Federal News Radio 1500AM WFED

If you can't wait, though, you can listen to (or download) this week's program and all our previous interviews at and by searching our audio archives.