Establish Data Collaboratives To Foster Meaningful Public Involvement

Article by Gwen Ottinger: “Federal agencies are striving to expand the role of the public, including members of marginalized communities, in developing regulatory policy. At the same time, agencies are considering how to mobilize data of increasing size and complexity to ensure that policies are equitable and evidence-based. However, community engagement has rarely been extended to the process of examining and interpreting data. This is a missed opportunity: community members can offer critical context to quantitative data, ground-truth data analyses, and suggest ways of looking at data that could inform policy responses to pressing problems in their lives. Realizing this opportunity requires a structure for public participation in which community members can expect both support from agency staff in accessing and understanding data and genuine openness to new perspectives on quantitative analysis. 

To deepen community involvement in developing evidence-based policy, federal agencies should form Data Collaboratives in which staff and members of the public engage in mutual learning about available datasets and their affordances for clarifying policy problems…(More)”.

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