Smart Government

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Photo of Shawn P. McCarthyOffline

The expression "all politics is local" has been with us for a long time. But it's fair to say that all data collection is local too.

While the federal government may be the gate keeper for the largest data collections in the world, most of that information has a local origin. Whether it's data related to store sales, health records, financial transactions, weather information, education statistics or citizen demographics, all information is collected locally. Data percolates up from the bottom, and it tells new stories as it is aggregated at the local, state and eventually national levels.

And as we move into the ever-larger Big Data era, it's also worth noting that state and local governments are starting to move into the lead when it comes to IT innovation. By "lead" we are not referring to highly technical innovation. (For example, DARPA's Tactically Exploited Reconnaissance Node.) Instead we mean that local government is leading when it comes to making the types of transitions that all government agencies are facing. They are innovating, consolidating and leading in wireless solutions.

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