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Data Governance Model

Governance Roles and Responsibilities

Data Trustee

These are individuals, preferably at a Director or Vice President level, who are ultimately responsible for the area represented by the data. They don’t need to know everything about the data, but must understand, and be responsible for, compliance and best practices, that data are interrelated, and that the Data Steward role is critically important for maintaining their area’s data.

Each area of the College for which data are kept should have a Data Steward assigned to it, and it is the responsibility of the Data Trustee to ensure that a Steward is assigned. The Data Trustee is the individual who would hold Data Stewards accountable for performing their duties, including ensuring that support, training, technology, and development opportunities are made available, as appropriate for the Data Stewards and Data Custodians.

Data Stewards

These are the individuals with the most direct responsibility for the integrity and maintenance of data in a particular area, and represent the key point of coordination with the rest of the institution. The position may vary by department and may overlap with the Data Custodian. Data Stewards are responsible for impressing upon the Data Custodians the importance of timely and accurate data entry.

Data Stewards are also responsible for the ensuring of auditing data for accuracy, currency,  and completeness and for maintaining training documentation. They must not only understand the meaning of the data, but also the use of the data across systems and over time throughout campus, the implications of changes on data, and the impact of inaccurate, incomplete, and inconsistent data.

If there is a third-party system, the Data Steward would be responsible for ensuring consistency of data across systems and be part of the evaluation/integration/implementation process. Data Stewards would work within existing structures and policies to appropriately manage the release of information across campus, coordinating with the Data Trustee.

Data Stewards should meet regularly to discuss responsibilities and approaches to challenges, possibly by attending the Information Systems Committee meetings (or a version of this committee with a broader scope). At these meetings, the Data Steward(s) who are members of the DGC will discuss the ongoing work of the DGC.

Data Custodians

These are individuals who work day-to-day with College data, sometimes overlapping with the Data Steward. One could be a custodian for a specific area but have knowledge of a broader area. Data Custodians may report to a Data Steward; however, they know the system and their own data and are responsible for doing their work accurately, following procedures that are understood by the Data Steward and the Data Custodians.

They should be able to understand the importance of following data procedures, and know that problems with the data can have impacts beyond their immediate area of responsibility. They have a responsibility to elevate inquiries/concerns to the Data Steward when applicable.

Role of Information Technology Services and Institutional Research

As part of the overall model, Information Technology Services and Institutional Research will hold continued and ongoing roles in guiding and informing the data governance process, connected and engaged at each level.