HOME 5 Getting Started 5 Introduction to Information Governance and Management


Administrative data

Administrative data is data collected and used for the purposes of performing governmental operational functions. This includes data collected during delivery of a program or service and data generated through internal government processes, such as Human Resources and Finances. Administrative data may be generated through transactions, record keeping, or registration, amongst other activities. Administrative data may be used secondarily for analytical purposes, but its primary function is to serve an operational function.

Good information governance and management is foundational to good data governance and management. Data governance is a component of information governance because data is a type of information. Your information governance structures will form the foundation for your data governance structures. Much of the work you will do on data governance will influence other areas of information governance. Likewise, much of the work you will do on data management will affect other areas of information management.

The term “information” in this context refers to all types of information held by an organization, in formats including oral histories and traditions, paper, electronic records (documents), images, and communications. These formats all include cultural teachings, long ago stories, and ceremonial knowledge. See an overall description of information and its components here. In the field of information governance and management, “data” is a type of structured information.

There are differences in opinion about how precisely to define and distinguish between information governance and data governance. For the purposes of this Toolkit, we consider the difference between the two as follows:

  • Information governance focuses on improving compliance and management of all records and information, both paper and electronic, across the whole organization.
  • Data governance focuses on the collection, management, and use of data sets (structured information) to inform priority setting, decision making, and intergovernmental negotiations.

Relationship between Information Governance and Management and Data Governance and Management

Good information governance and management practices make it possible to put data to work in supporting your community’s vision and goals. Your government has a wealth of administrative information that can be used to understand the socioeconomic status of your citizens. When your government’s administrative information is managed effectively, a large amount of data can be compiled and analyzed with little or no additional work. For example, you may be able to easily determine the number of citizens currently attending post-secondary school by looking at the number of citizens receiving scholarship support in your financial system.

In addition, effectively managed administrative information is more likely to be accurate and comprehensive. These qualities are essential to data analysis.

This Toolkit is not meant to fully describe information governance and management; however, the document below introduces how information governance and management can support data governance and management initiatives. It also directs you to more in-depth resources.

Information Governance and Management Resources

ARMA International is an association for information professionals. The ARMA website has many helpful education resources. We recommend the Principles® Maturity Model to help you assess your government’s information management systems.

The First Nations Public Service Secretariat runs 2-day Management Training Academies for Records and Information Management.

The First Nations Summit developed the Information Management Toolkit for First Nations Government in BC in 2010. It is available for free online.

The webinar below is a presentation by Bobbi Bishop and Stuart Rennie on information governance and management. For more webinars covering content in this toolkit click here.

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Downloadable documents on this page

Introduction to Information Governance and Management