Efficient oversight of campus data resources is managed by a multiple layers of responsible personnel. To ensure that data is managed as a material asset, the campus has established a data governance program with the goals of ensuring that data provides value, meets compliance requirements, and risks are managed appropriately. Data governance plays a central role in the control and distribution of important information within the campus.
Without data governance, people may not know who to go to for answers to their questions, and may receive and/or circulate incorrect information. Communications can also become randomized, and people may rely merely on informal collaboration for the university to operate properly, which can be risky. Data governance helps address these risks. The program consists of Data Trustees, Data Stewards, Data Custodians, and Data Users.
Data Trustees are accountable for managing, protecting, and ensuring the integrity and usefulness of campus data. Usually executive level leadership, Data Trustees provide the necessary resources and decisions needed to fully implement a data governance model.
Although they often have custodial responsibilities, Data Stewards are distinguished by having delegated decision-making authority. They may represent Data Trustees in policy discussions, architectural discussions, or in decision-making forums. In addition to upholding campus policies and state/federal law, Data Stewards work with Data Custodians and are responsible for identifying the sensitivity and criticality of data.
Data Custodians have control over a data asset's disposition whether stored, in transit, or during creation. They are usually associated with core functional or IT units within the campus, and typically have modification or distribution privileges. Because they take such a hands-on role, Custodians carry a significant responsibility to protect data and prevent unauthorized use.
Data Users create and leverage university data, and share responsibility in helping Data Stewards and Custodians manage and protect data. Data Users can consist of any individuals or campus units that create or manage sets of campus data.