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CHIPS Articles: FY17 Naval Innovation Advisory Council Update

FY17 Naval Innovation Advisory Council Update
Summary of studies: Does the DON need a Chief Data Officer?
By DON Innovation - February 7, 2017
We are approximately at the halfway point in the Naval Innovation Advisory Council (NIAC) FY17 program, and this is a good time to share what has been done over the past few months. The NIAC currently has seven SECNAV Innovation Advisors, five Sailors and two Marines, who conduct research, advance problem-solving projects, and advise SECNAV on innovation opportunities within the DON. Below is just a sampling of FY17 projects which are reaching completion.

This fiscal year the NIAC was tasked to determine if the DON needs a Chief Data Officer (CDO). A CDO would potentially serve as a department-level officer that identifies, governs, and valuates data, as well as implements policy, supervises service collaboration, and generates analytics.

NIAC recently submitted findings and recommendations for a CDO. Among the key findings are that the expectations of operational community are not supported by current information infrastructure and information management approach, and that our comparative information advantage with regard to information is defaulting to our competitors.

NIAC supplemented this work with an analysis of the relevant recent literature and studies on CDO roles and responsibilities, and coupled with interviews from CDO executives from seven government organizations representing military services, centralized and decentralized agencies, and agencies of different sizes.

NIAC is also completing its project on Social Business (SB). SB is a platform that enables fast and easy collaboration and access to information, and shares knowledge, removes communication barriers, and results in accelerated business transformation and culture change. The NIAC was tasked to examine SB capabilities and their potential for providing an effective means of collaboration and networking within the DON.

NIAC has connected with Vice Adm. Cullom (N4), IBM, and the NAVSEA Fusion/Wiki program, which is currently engaged in a pilot for information sharing behind the NMCI firewall, and is currently drafting a SB requirements document and implementation recommendations for review.

In addition to the above, NIAC has led projects for the Navy with Defense Innovation Unit Experimental (DIUx) in Silicon Valley. DIUx serves as a bridge between identified naval technology gaps and potential cutting edge technology solutions in private industry.

Among the NIAC-led projects are for the NAVINSGEN to enhance analytic capabilities by developing software to import text within documents into relevant fields in a flat file database for analysis, and create reports using algorithms to identify markers for predictive analytics.

A second project at DIUx is for EOD Knowledge Management to push recent intelligence and emerging trends from the battlefield to deployed forces and training environments. The intention is to enhance the decision-making process to be more efficient, holistic, and transparent, which integrating recent field experiences and lessons learned into dynamic training material for classroom environments and other deployed operational forces.

In the coming months, the NIAC will complete a second tranche of projects on mobility, data management, and predictive analytics.

Join DON Innovation on or @DON_Innovation or visit the SECNAV/DON Innovation website at

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