How to Build an Effective Government Website


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The Recovery Board staff knows a thing or two about creating a complex site for tracking disparate data. Come to Prime and learn how they did it.

You might not know it from all the negative publicity surrounding the rollout of, but it really is possible for federal officials to create a searchable, public facing website that integrates complex government data sets from disparate sources and computer systems. Just ask the folks at the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, the organization created in 2009 to track $840 billion in federal stimulus spending. Based on its success, it was later tapped to do the same for disaster relief spending following Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

The Recovery Board executive staff will discuss how they did it at Nextgov Prime Nov. 20. Shawn Kingsberry, chief technology officer; Veda Woods, chief information security officer; and Hermanth Setty, chief technology officer, will talk about how they created the architecture on a very tight timeline to effectively track spending.

Their experience speaks directly to the challenges agencies will likely face if Congress passes the 2013 Digital Accountability and Transparency Act, which aims to create a single website for citizens to track federal spending.   

“Americans should be able to go to one place to see information about federal spending,” Earl Devaney, the former chairman of the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, said Monday in remarks at the executive leadership conference sponsored by ACT-IAC, a public-private technology group.

The Data Act, introduced by Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., (S. 994) and Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., (H.R. 2061) in May, has a good chance of becoming law next year, Devaney said. All the more reason you should join us at Prime next month. Registration is free for federal employees.