Friday, September 23, 2016
The IBM Center's Weekly Roundup highlights articles and insights that we found interesting for the week ending September 23, 2016.

Michael J. Keegan

FAA looks to take over commercial space traffic control. The Federal Aviation Administration is making the case that it and not the military should police commercial space traffic, and Congress is helping the flight agency take the first step.

New schedule for military EHR rollout is imminentThe Department of Defense will decide on a new schedule for the rollout of its new, commercial electronic health record product in the next seven to 10 days, according to a spokesperson.The new health record system, dubbed MHS Genesis, was scheduled to have an initial operating capability in the Pacific Northwest by Dec. 31, 2016, to comport with the date set in the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act.

Innovation in government can come from anywhere. Steve Kelman sees potential in a public-domain piano experiment.

DOD launches new tech hub in Austin. The DOD is opening a new Defense Innovation Unit Experimental office in Austin, Texas, while Congress debates legislation that could defund DIUx.

IRS commissioner tells lawmakers impeachment would be ‘improper’. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen took responsibility for his decisions and actions during a congressional investigation into the agency’s involvement in targeting of political groups. But he said impeachment would not be appropriate.

John Kamensky

Tiered Evidence Grants.  The Government Accountability Office released a new reportthat asks: Are federal grants rewarding results? Their report examines “A new policy tool called "tiered evidence grantmaking" allows federal agencies to award smaller amounts of grant funding to test promising ideas, and larger amounts to replicate practices with strong evidence of success. To help support innovation and reward results, agencies collect information on how health care, education, and social service projects are performing throughout the life of their grants.”

Data and Analytics Innovation.  GAO sponsored a forum on innovation using data and analytics innovation (DAI): “participants suggested that efforts to help realize the promise of DAI opportunities would be directed toward improving data access, assessing the validity of new data and models, creating a welcoming DAI ecosystem, and more generally, raising awareness of DAI’s potential among both policymakers and the general public.”

Expanding Open Government.  Meritalk writes: “The White House released a progress report on its third Open Government National Action Plan (NAP) and added new commitments to the plan. For example, increasing access to Internet connectivity and releasing a Responsible Business Conduct National Action Plan, which promotes responsible business practices by U.S. companies operating abroad. . . . U.S. leaders met with the Open Government Partnership (OGP) and civil society organizations at the United Nations on Tuesday to announce these new goals.”

Legacy Monkeys.  Federal News Radio reports: “Federal chief information officers are cautiously optimistic about the Office of Management and Budget’s IT Modernization Fund proposal. . . .About 33 percent of those CIOs and deputy CIOs who responded to Federal News Radio’s exclusive 2016 survey say the $3.1 billion revolving fund would make some difference in moving agencies off legacy IT systems.”

Cure for Budget Woes? Government Executive reports: “Congress’ frustrating budget stalemates and addiction to end-of-session continuing resolutions could be eliminated under a new set of reform proposals detailed on Monday by Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., chairman of the Budget Committee.”

Digital Maturity. Federal News Radio reports: “Agencies have generally been slow or hesitant to transform themselves into fully functioning digital service operations, according to a recent series of reports on the topic from public and private sector organizations. . . . Six out of 25 agencies have set up agreements with the Office of Management and Budget to establish digital service teams, the Government Accountability Office said. Two more agencies, the Small Business Administration and Education Department, are expected to set up teams with the U.S. Digital Service by the end of the fiscal year.”

Ready to Launch.  Federal News Radio reports: “In less than two weeks, the Office of Personnel Management is expected to launch the new background investigation service to help fix the mess created by a series of incidents ranging from a lack of contractor oversight to the massive data breach affecting 21.5 million current and former federal employees. . . . Officials promise the National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB) will be a much different organization than its predecessor, the Federal Investigative Services.”

Employee Engagement Survey Results: Encouraging.  Government Executivereports:  “Federal employees are marginally more engaged in and satisfied with their jobs this year than last, according to a new governmentwide survey measuring the workforce’s attitudes on morale, management and compensation. This marks the second consecutive year the numbers ticked up.”

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The Business of Government Radio Show: Anne Rung, Administrator, Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP), Office of Management and Budget. Why is federal acquisition so complex? What is category management? How is the federal government driving innovation in acquisition? What is being done to strengthen government-industry relationships? Join host Michael J. Keegan as he explores these questions and more with Anne Rung, Administrator, Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP), Office of Management and Budget. Here’s a sneak peek!


Broadcast Schedule: The show airs Monday at 11 a.m., and Friday at 1 p.m. on Federal News Radio 1500AM WFED