Led by the city’s Data Officer, the cross-departmental Data Governance team includes 60+ Metro employees that work with data and represent every city department and has built a data-driven culture across the city, breaking down silos and fostering collaboration. The team receives trainings, creates policy, shares data, and manages open data. Members are recommended as a result of Mayor Fischer’s Open Data Executive Order (Section 3) and the Open Data Policy (3.1.2).
Members do data analysis for their departments and across Metro, including on mobility data, LouieStat, budget and finance, crime and public safety, economic development, public works, GIS, health, the mayor’s office, and air pollution control.
Mission and Themes
Each year the Data Officer and planning team picks a theme that guides our mission, work, and goals for the year.
- 2022 Theme: Review and Rebuild
- 2021 Theme: Automation and Pandemic Response
- 2020 Theme: Open Data
- 2019 Theme: Grow Metro’s data capacity through training, policy, and collaboration
- 2018 Theme: Do data-driven work for Metro
- 2017 Theme: Create a data-driven culture at Metro
Members spend their time on the following activities:
- Data analysis trainings (by our Data Officer, Senior Data Scientist, OPI’s Data Academy, Microsoft, and paid trainers like GovEx from Johns Hopkins and Tandem Solutions)
- Giving access to new data tools for analysis, dashboards, warehousing, and mapping
- Having working groups on data standards and writing data policy
- Talking about how to share data internally and externally
- Building data culture and earning rewards with our Metro badges program
- Supporting a data warehouse and central visualization/dashboard platform
- Working with DoIT to ensure we have the tools and access needed
- Pooling our talents and resources to eliminate duplicate costs and efforts
- Managing department’s open data and meta data
- Updating a city-wide data inventory for internal and public use
- Automating our delivery of data and services to residents
We provide curriculum, training, and presentations for members on topics around the data lifecycle, including quality, collection, storage, metadata, visualization, business intelligence, ethics, and standards. We also have started a Data Academy on beginner and advanced usage of tools like Power BI, Excel, Carto, GIS, and other open source data visualization tools.
Events and Hackathons
Our goal to institutionalize innovation has led to creating an Analog Hackathon curriculum, having an internal hackathon around Waze data, and helping organize external hackathons like Open Data Day with participation from members.
Open data, public transparency, and data-driven efforts in Louisville remain a strong and continuing priority for Mayor Greg Fischer and the Office of Civic Innovation. The Data Governance team works to release new data the public values, improve existing data sets, provide accurate metadata, and increase the frequency of data updates.
In partnership with LOJIC we publish over 400 datasets including budget items, crime reports, restaurant health ratings, employee salaries, building permits, car collisions, fire runs, and 311 service calls. This information is used by companies like Waze, Yelp, the American Printing House for the Blind, Google Maps, Crime Reports, and Apple to improve your experiences within their apps and services that you use daily. It’s also is used by journalists, researchers, non-profits, and residents to help you understand what is happening across all levels of your city and neighborhood.
Each member is required to be on at least one working group, around topics like data policy, data standards (sex/gender, street addresses, race/nationality, date/time), a city-wide data inventory, data visualization, data warehousing, and automation.
The city’s official data inventory of data sources and data sets is run by the Data Inventory Working Group. It is a critical part of our What Works Cities certification, spanning both the data inventory and data classification areas, and informs our data warehouse efforts.
Louisville Metro Badges
The city of Louisville has a Badge reward program that allows employees to earn badges by doing data-driven and innovative work, much like the Girl Scouts. The goal is to encourage Metro employees across all agencies to learn new skills and to be better equipped to serve our citizens.
In addition to the rewards listed on the badge site, members that earned 10 badges in the Data Scounts or Innovation Pioneers tracks, recieved special recognition at the Mayor’s Annual Day of Celebration.
Recognition and Awards
Our skilled employees are our most essential asset, and we want to make sure we give them the recognition and support they deserve to be effective in their efforts to serve residents. Besides recognizing them with our badge program and at LouieStat, we also present awards for top performers at the Mayor’s Day of Celebration. The Trailblazer Award goes to members who earned at least 2 badges, attended 5 or more of the trainings, and contributed to a Working Group.
What Works Cities
In 2020 Louisville achieved Bloomberg What Works Cities certified Platinum status. Only 1 other city, Los Angeles, achieved this accomplishment.
In 2019 Louisville achieved Bloomberg What Works Cities certified Gold status. 1,400 cities are eligible, with nearly 90 submitting assessments, and only 3 achieving Gold and 4 Silver this year. Read about the assessment guidelines on the WWC site.
The Data Governance team has been essential in our city’s overall What Works Cities certification starting in 2017 with one of 8 cities out of 230 to get Silver Certification (plus LA which got Gold).
In 2017 we achieved 100% in the Open Data category, our single 100% across the six measures. We only reached 40% in the Data Governance category, but the team worked hard in 2018 and 2019 to achieve 100% in both the Open Data and Data Governance categories, plus 100% in the new Public Stakeholder Engagement category. Certification allows employees to receive training from GovEx for free, and over 35 employees have signed up for thousands of dollars of courses in the first quarter of 2019 alone.
2019 Gold Certification:
2018 Progress Tracking Board:
2017 Silver Certification:
So what does this mean for residents? WWC has seen that well-managed cities are better solving the problems facing their communities and addressing residents’ needs. They are stretching every dollar by using data to set priorities, budget effectively, and ensure investments are producing results.