Accountability and Performance Update – May 3 – 9, 2021

DOD Targets 2028 for First Clean Financial Statement Audit

Federal News Network

Pentagon financial leaders said they’re making meaningful progress toward finally earning a clean audit opinion. So much so, in fact, that they’re now willing to project a tentative timeframe for when it’ll happen: 2028.

Experts Examine Accountability, Transparency Improvements in Government


House lawmakers examined legislative reforms Monday that might help restore public confidence.

White House Seeks Ideas on How Agencies Can Deliver Services More Equitably

Government Executive

The Office of Management and Budget on Wednesday solicited advice to better ensure agency programs are serving groups based specifically on race, sexual orientation and identity, religion, disabilities and others affected by inequality.

Lawmakers Say It’s Past Time OMB Issued IDEA Act Guidance


After two years in limbo and a pandemic forcing more adoption of digital services, House lawmakers want to see real guidance issued in the next 45 days.

Defense Intelligence and Security: DOD Needs to Establish Oversight Expectations and to Develop Tools That Enhance Accountability

U.S. Government Accountability Office

The Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security, created after 9/11, hasn’t set clear expectations for its oversight mission.

Senate Hearing: Findings and Recommendations of the Government Accountability Office on Duplication, Overlap, and Fragmentation of Federal Programs – May 12, 2021

Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs

Annual release of GAO’s mandated report identifying duplication, overlap and fragmentation in federal programs, and agencies’ progress on addressing prior GAO recommendations to address them.

 Webinar: Data Analytics: Unlocking the Data to Find Hidden Patterns – May 12, 2021

Association of Government Accountants

This webinar explores the use of data analytics to support decisions made by government financial managers.

Policy Insights

JPAL North America

What have we learned from randomized evaluations that policymakers, practitioners, and funders can use to improve social programs? J-PAL’s Policy Insights, organized by sector, highlight lessons emerging across multiple studies and the mechanisms that help explain the results.

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Accountability and Performance Update – April 26-May 2, 2021

Use Performance Principles to Spend State-Local Rescue Plan Monies

New York Times op-ed by Robert Gordon and Michele Jolin

Based on decades of experience with every level of government, we would organize efforts around five principles.

As Influx of Aid Nears, Some Guiding Principles for States and Localities to Consider


The Government Finance Officers Association has issued a set of principles for finance officers and elected officials to think about as they move ahead.

How We Can – and Should – Link Recovery Spending to Long-Term Transformation


Success will depend on how the funds are spent: what plans are put in place for spending, how those plans are executed and the mechanisms that are established to ensure accountability.

Senate Confirms OMB Deputy Director for Management

Government Executive

Miller is a former Obama administration economic adviser and most recently a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and CEO of the Greater Washington Partnership, a nonprofit civic alliance. 

“Our Government Still Works”

Government Executive

On the eve of his 100th day in office, the president recapped his administration’s achievements and outlined plans for vast reforms.

Defense Acquisition Reform: Increased Focus on Knowledge Needed to Achieve Intended Performance and Innovation Outcomes

U.S. Government Accountability Office

Using knowledge at key points in weapons programs helps reduce the risk of cost and schedule overruns that have plagued DOD’s weapon programs in the past.

Overcoming Road Blocks to Evidence-Based Policymaking

Route Fifty

Despite these advances, federal, state and local governments face complex challenges in using data to build a stronger foundation for evidence-based policy. 

Results for America Newsletter – April 2021

What works in federal policy

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Accountability and Performance Update – April 18-25, 2021

Agencies Gain Momentum Appointing Evidence Act Leadership


The Evaluation Officer Council meets monthly and works regularly with the Federal CDO Council and Performance Improvement Council. 

New Treasury Office Will Oversee COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Programs

Government Executive

 Up until now, different offices within Treasury led the various coronavirus relief initiatives that the department is responsible for.

Reinventing the Grant System to be More Outcome-Focused

IBM Center for The Business of Government

Is it time to reinvent the roles of the many players in the grants management system and designate an “outcomes broker?”

Bill to Strengthen IG Independence

Federal News Network

The leadership of the House Oversight and Reform Committee . . . are calling for a new kind of investment in IG offices — greater independence from presidential firings, the authority to subpoena former federal employees and contractors, and more urgency within the White House to name permanent watchdogs to positions left vacant for years.

“A Troubling Trend:” Independent State Program Evaluation Under Attack

Route Fifty

Without a vote, the legislative leadership in North Carolina closed the state’s program evaluation division

Bringing Rigorous Testing to Health Care Policy

New York Times

Randomized, evidence-based trials, long required for new drugs, are now underway for government policy initiatives

Bipartisan Bill Seeks Broader Input, More Specifics as Agencies Craft Performance Goals

 Government Executive

A bipartisan pair of lawmakers is pushing to improve the performance plans federal agencies issue each year, introducing legislation that would require input from more leadership officials. 

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Accountability and Performance Update – April 12-17, 2021

Emphasizing Evidence: Strengthening Texas Grantmaking

Results for America

What does investing in what works look like? In Texas, state workforce officials are demonstrating how evidence-based grantmaking can improve outcomes for young people looking for a pathway to a successful career.

Public Sector Porkies – 10 Years of Lying Up the Hierarchy

Centre for Public Impact

I quickly learned that in the real world, data is cleansed, re-presented and re-formatted until it tells an acceptable and neat story.

Data Is Infrastructure

Data Coalition

When the United States government issued its Federal Data Strategy in 2019, it recognized the role of data as a component of infrastructure.

Survey Measures Show Feds Are Happier with Their Jobs in the Midst of a Pandemic

Federal Times

Even during the worst global pandemic of the century, increased demands on public jobs and a radical shift to predominantly remote work, federal employees are confident in their agencies’ ability to keep them safe and recognize their hard work, according to results of the 2020 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey.

Hiring Assessment Dashboards Help

Federal News Network

Most agencies rely on job candidates to self-certify their own skills and abilities, but those assessments bring in qualified talent about half the time, according to a federal hiring data dashboard.

Using AI to Assess Contractor Performance

Federal News Network

If the federal acquisition workforce is ever going to make contractor evaluations meaningful, it’s going to happen this year.

Data Science for Everyone – Webinar, April 26th

Center for Radical Innovation for Social Change, University of Chicago

Join the Data Science for Everyone coalition in a webinar led by Kumar Garg of Schmidt Futures to learn more about the Data Science for Everyone Commitments Campaign 

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Accountability and Performance Update – April 4-11, 2021

Trump Administration Performance Management Archives

U.S. Office of Management and Budget

Federal Cross-Agency Priority Goals, Agency Strategic Plans did not completely disappear with the end of the Trump Administration

Update to Implementation of Performance Management Statutes

U.S. Office of Management and Budget

Restores Part 6 to OMB Circular A-11, “Federal Performance Framework for Improving Program and Service Delivery.”

Grants Management: OMB Should Collect and Share Lessons Learned from Use of COVID-19-Related Grant Flexibilities

U.S. Government Accountability Office

OMB issued 15 temporary exceptions to its grant requirements; should they become permanent?

Federal Low-Income Programs: Data to Verify Eligibility Varies Among Selected Programs and Opportunities Exist to Promote Additional Use

U.S. Government Accountability Office

GAO reviewed 6 federal programs that reported using over 30 data sources to verify recipient eligibility. It recommends federal agencies share with state and local agencies to improve their verification processes.

Inclusive, Equity-Centered Government

Deloitte Research

Embedding greater inclusion, diversity, and equity into the public sector to address underlying imbalances

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