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Data Governance at USI

In June 2017 a strategic initiative was implemented to develop a comprehensive data governance framework for the University of Southern Indiana. A task force was established and members were identified from key departments on campus. The task force met for a full week and worked on:

  • Identifying the variables needed for a business glossary, data dictionary and code book
  • Fleshing out the glossary, dictionary and code book using the Registrar enrollment report as a use case
  • Identifying a platform or tool to house the glossary, dictionary and codebook
  • Developing a change management process


The vision of the USI Data Governance Committee is to ensure that all faculty, staff, administrators and students have the necessary information and resources to responsibly access, create, utilize, maintain, and secure data.


The USI Data Governance Committee shall provide oversight and support with regard to the overall management of the availability, usability, integrity, and security of the data collected and owned by the University of Southern Indiana.


The Data Governance Committee establishes University practice relative to matters of institutional data, including but not limited to

  • data definitions
  • data collection
  • data editing and integrity
  • data reporting

What is data governance?

According to the Data Governance Professionals Organization, data governance is

“A discipline that provides clear-cut policies; procedures; standards; roles; responsibilities; and accountabilities to ensure that data is well-managed as an enterprise resource.”

Data Governance is the collection of practices and processes which help to ensure the formal management of data assets with authority inside an organization. This allows for quality data to be shared internally and externally with consistent data definitions and reporting practices. Building relationships among areas within the university creates space for new perspectives and strategies. A common understanding of university data is essential for successful strategic planning university initiatives. (Importance of Data Governance)


Data Cookbook - implementation processes continue

The Data Cookbook is a data dictionary and data glossary hybrid which creates an easy way to record and share official data definitions and report specifications. We are currently in the process of documenting a few select reports before opening the software up to the university at large. Learn more about the Data Cookbook software.

Item Request/Notification Form, now available

As the Data Governance team continues to enhance data awareness across campus, we are implementing a new form that allows the data community to communicate new items, changes, and issues to the larger Data Governance team. The Item Request/Notification Form should be used to communicate or request for the following items:

  • Code changes or new code use
  • New Cognos report requests
  • Cognos report changes
  • Data Governance requests/issues

Once a form is submitted the Data Governance team will ensure it is routed for awareness or support.  The goal of the new form is to document changes, issues and questions. This process ensures there are applicable assign resources to resolve and re-mediate the request. It also assists with timely document changes in the business glossary, data dictionary, code book, or issue log as needed. The goal of the Data Governance team is to provide awareness of all changes, issues, and questions with the resolution noted. With any new process, we will monitor and continue to enhance the process to meet the needs of the data community.

Fill out the Item Request/Notification Form