Data governance is the collection of practices and processes that helps to build trust and transparency with the data assets of Ohio State.
The goal of data governance is to build strong trust in data through:
- Transparent, inclusive processes
- Shared data responsibilities
- Proactive data validation
- Consistent definitions, naming and support
Data governance is a core component of the Office of Technology and Digital Innovation's (OTDI) efforts to support the teaching, research, service, and patient care missions of the university. This work represents an opportunity to foster a collaborative and inclusive culture around our data. As a result, the university's data governance model is maturing and much of the information below is in a draft or proposal state. Check out the Media page for a quick five minute Data Governance video overview.
Check back regularly for updates and finalized structures and processes. If you have feedback regarding draft or proposed information, please contact Laura Gast, Data Governance Program Director.
Data Governance Checklist
The Data Governance Checklist is available for download and use as a resource to ensure all projects incorporate sound governance principles from the outset. While most projects entail implementing new systems or tools, this guide also addresses data governance needs for retiring or decommissioning existing systems.
Data Governance Stewardship Structure and Roles
A key concept in the development of data governance at the university is that it should be only as formal as needed, according to the priority and use of the data in question. As a result, the data stewardship structure needs to be fully and clearly defined for the most impactful data elements even though in practice many data processes and decisions can be handled by individual areas and stewards.
Current Data Stewards
As outlined by Ohio State’s Institutional Data Policy, “data stewards” are designated university officials whose functional areas of responsibility include the creation or origination of institutional data. They have overall responsibility for managing and maintaining such data. Data stewards are the main point of contact for their respective data and how it should be used. A listing of current data stewards, along with their data area and contact information, is available at the Data Domains page.
Structure and Roles
Both campus and the medical center are represented at all levels of data governance, including joint stewardship of data domains, when appropriate.
Data Governance Council
Responsible for strategic guidance of the data governance program, prioritization for data governance projects and initiatives, and final arbiter for decisions that cannot be resolved at a lower level. The current Data Governance Council membership list and charter are available for reference (login required).
Senior executive responsible for data and domains within their organization who responds to high-level data issues such as a data breach.
Primary Domain Steward
Takes a strategic, cross-functional view of domain data for the benefit of the enterprise, promotes data governance within the unit's business processes, resolves intra-domain conficts and escalates to the Data Governance Council when necessary, responsible for approving (or delegating the approval of) data access requests.
Secondary Domain Steward
Responsible for issue resolution within the secondary domain and actively champions the implementation and enforcement of data governance within their functional areas of responsibility, resolves intra-domain conflicts where possible and escalates to the Primary Domain Steward.
Operational Data Steward
Responsible for data quality audits and fixes as well as data quality triage and resolution, serves as the primary subject matter expert on unit data, facilitates development of metadata for data assets.
Data Governance Program Office (DGPO)
Responsible for defining, facilitating, supporting and sustaining data governance program activities with the goal of ensuring data is managed as an enterprise asset, tracks and reports success metrics to the Data Governance Council and stewardship stakeholders.
What is Data Governance?
Data Governance is a framework of processes and tools that manage institutional data. More simply, it is about who has decision rights about data such as defining terms, approving access, and managing data quality to improve and protect Ohio State’s data assets.
What is a data domain?
Data domains are logical groupings of related data to provide a common structure in order to clearly define boundaries, interdependencies and stewardship areas of responsibility. Data domains consist of Primary Domains subdivided into Secondary Domains. The domain structure will continue to grow and expand to cover all data at Ohio State including the Wexner Medical Center. By design, Ohio State’s domain structure is not specifically tied to our organizational structure or to particular systems to minimize the impact of organizational or system changes.
What is a data steward?
A data steward is someone who has been assigned a formal role as an Operational Data Steward, Secondary Domain Steward or Primary Domain Steward. As part of their role, Data Stewards are designated university officials whose functional areas of responsibility include the creation or origination of institutional data. They have overall responsibility for managing and maintaining such data. Data stewards are the main point of contact for their respective data and how it should be used.
Whose role is it to take care of data at Ohio State?
It is everyone’s role to take care of data, even if you have not formally been assigned a data stewardship role. We all have a part to play in the caretaking and safeguarding of data which we create or use in our jobs and roles.