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Information Resource Governance Refinements for 2008

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Volume 2 | Issue 1 | January 2008

Daniel Vitek, MBA, PMP

Jim Seligman, Chief Information Officer, and Sandra McGill, CPIC Team Lead, are presenting a kickoff session on CDC Information Resource Governance and the HHS Enterprise Performance Life Cycle at the January CDC Project Management Community of Practice.

This Project Management Community of Practice meeting will be held on January 25, 2008 from 9:00AM – 10:30AM at 2500 Century Center in room 1200. All are welcome to attend. For more information visit the CDC Unified Process website

Information, and the technology that supports it, represents a very valuable asset for CDC. In the 1980’s, information technology expenditures grew 8% compounded annually. In the 1990’s that growth doubled to 16%, and between 2002 and 2005 it exceeded 30% a year. During this period, CDC has increased its information technology program investments substantially through the addition of initiatives such as HAN, NEDSS, State preparedness grants, BioSense, and NEPHTN. As a result, the current information technology and informatics spending at CDC has grown to approximately $518 million a year necessary to support these and other programs. Of this amount, approximately $300 million is spent internally across all CDC Coordinating Centers, Institutes, and Offices. These expenditures support the development and operation of 453 information systems across the Agency as well as CDC’s entire information technology infrastructure.

Successful organizations recognize the benefits of their information resources and use them to drive the accomplishment of their missions. In order for this to occur, there must be in place effective information resources governance processes, structures, and associated resources. CDC has long recognized the importance of information technology governance and has adopted the following definition of Information Resource Governance: “the process of managing information resources to accomplish agency missions. This term encompasses information itself, as well as related resources, such as personnel, equipment, funds, and information technology.” CDC has also decided that its Information Resource Governance needs to be a broad agency-wide activity that addresses the entire lifecycle of public health information and information systems as well as technologies that facilitate the optimal, and secure performance of the Agency.

Since 1985 the CDC has had four generations of information technology and informatics governance evolution, each generation focusing on more optimally aligning governance with organizational needs. As a result of recent organizational changes, CDC once again needs to implement refinements to the Information Resource Governance process.

A temporary working group, the Information Resource Governance Development Working Group, was established in 2007 as a broad, collaborative, agency-wide effort chartered to provide a series of governance options and recommendations that took into account agency-wide governance requirements.

The Information Resource Governance Development Working Group found that there were many factors driving the requirement for refinements and implementation of effective CDC Information Resource Governance. Some of these requirements include:

  • Federal mandates
    • OMB Federal Enterprise Architecture (FEA)
    • OMB Capital Planning and Investment Control (CPIC) processes
    • Clinger – Cohen Act of 1996
    • HHS Enterprise Performance Life Cycle Framework (EPLC)
  •  Current Federal initiatives
    • American Health Information Community (AHIC) recommendations on adoption of health information technology (Health IT)
    • Office of the National Coordinator funded Health information technology Standards Panel (ONC HITSP) development of interoperability specifications
      •  rapidly growing complexities in information systems and technologies
      • Budget pressures with greater information system needs

The Information Resource Governance Development Working Group worked for twelve weeks developing governance recommendations for consideration by Executive Sponsors and the Executive Leadership Board. Recommendations were developed with a focus on specific benefits such as:

  • Greater information resources alignment with business needs (business-driven)
  • Broader strategic planning coordination
  • More collaborative information system development and synergies
  • More cost-effective information resources investment and management
  • Improved efficiency, effectiveness and interoperability
  • Greater agility for public health response

These recommendations were presented to Executive Sponsors in early October 2007 and to the Executive Leadership Board in mid-November 2007. After careful considerations all recommendations were universally adopted and recognized as the way forward for CDC. An implementation plan is currently being developed which includes an awareness and education component. It is expected that this next generation of IR Governance structures will be chartered and membership established within the 2nd quarter of FY2008.

For more information and tools related to the topic(s) covered in this newsletter, the CDC Unified Process, or the Project Management Community of Practice please visit the CDC Unified Process website at

Please also visit the CDC Unified Process Newsletter Archive located at for access to many additional newsletters, articles, and management related topics and information.


The CDC UP offers a short overview presentation to any CDC FTE or Non-FTE group. Presentations are often performed at your location, on a day of the week convenient for your group, and typically take place over lunch structured as one hour lunch-and-learn style meeting.

Contact the CDC Unified Process at or visit to arrange a short overview presentation for your group.


The CDC Unified Process Project Management Newsletter is authored by Daniel Vitek, MBA, PMP and published by the Office of Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services.

For questions about the CDC Unified Process, comments regarding this newsletter, suggestions for future newsletter topics, or to subscribe to the CDC Unified Process Project Management Newsletter please contact the CDC Unified Process or visit



  • January 25, 2008
    Topic: CDC IR Governance and Health and human Services Enterprise Performance Life Cycle
  • February 29, 2008
    Topic: Project Server
  • March 28, 2008
    Topic: Mid Tier Data center and Designated Server Site
  • April 25, 2008
    Topic: Program Management Professional Certification
  • May 16, 2008
    Topic: Security Issues that a Project Manager at CDC Needs to Address
  • June 27, 2008
    Topic: Procurement and Grants Office Processes
  • July 24, 2008
    Topic: Project Management Career Framework
  • August 22, 2008
    Topic: General Management vs. Project Management
  • September 26, 2008
    Topic: Records Management, Privacy Impact Analysis, and Classified Information
  • October 24, 2008
    Topic: Facilitation - A Key to Project Success
  • December 05, 2008
    Topic: Influence - A Critical Skill for Successful Project Managers


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