In 2005 the "Direzione Sistema Statistico Regionale" (DSSR in the remaining of the document) - the regional statistical department of Veneto,Â according to localÂ regulations (L.R. 8/2002)Â and the information needs, started the SÃ¬GOVe (Sistema Informativo di Governo della Regione Veneto)Â project to better support the regional governance.
SÃ¬GOVe is aimed to support politicians,Â public sector managersÂ and others local institutions in their daily work supplying certified information in a timely and efficient way (see attachment "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 7).
SÃ¬GOVe is a statistical information system storing all the information related to regionalÂ requirements (economy, demography, agriculture, ...).
After identifying the overall contents structures (chapters, areas, sections, ...) DSSR chose a modular approach and started to implement the firstÂ areas of the systemÂ to evaluate the SÃ¬GOVe potential. Then, year after year, many other modules have been deployed; today the system is made up of 32 different areas (for the main SÃ¬GOVe topics see attachment "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 8).
For each moduleÂ the project team identifies the data sourcesÂ based onÂ key users' requirements. Once identified the data sources, the data model is designedÂ and the dataÂ collection phase starts in order toÂ transform raw-data into consistent and homogenous information.Â Finally the team implements analysis scenario supported by reports and dashboards (i.e. measures and indicators).
The project is in production sinceÂ march 2006 and allows the users to get, in an easily and timely manner, useful guidelines and hints to drive their analysis and decision making processes.
The solution addresses the needs of the "business users" with (see attachment "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 7)
At the end of XX century the role of regional government institutions is becoming more and more important and challenging to support the society.Â The regional government started to ask information in order toÂ achieve economic growth andÂ address the demand of the society (citizens, companies, public institutions).
This "new" role required the abilities to have certified information to support the local governmentÂ initiatives.
The main objectives of the localÂ regulations (L.R. 8/2002), at the basis of SÃ¬GOVe, is to manage the activities performed by actors belonging to regional public sector, related to find data sources, organize data, analyze and archive information and deliver statistical information. The aim is to guarantee consistency and data integrity, to rationalize data flows, in order to support the national statistic system (SISTAN).
On this basis, DSSR of Veneto accepted the challenge and started, in 2005, the SÃ¬GOVe project to reorganize its information system architecture in order to get more power from raw data.
DSSRÂ acquired data from ISTAT and other national statistical institutions that contribute to the definition of "Programma Statistico Nazionale" (national statistical program) and then itÂ extended the European data sources such as Eurostat and other institutes focusing on regional benchmarking.
To understand how SÃ¬GOVe fits in the regional statistics system see attachment "01_DSSR_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf".
The new regulation and the changing framework required attention on some key elements:
We add some informationÂ about Veneto. Veneto is an Italian region with
The SÃ¬GOVe project addresses the general need to have certified information to increase knowledge on the regional phenomena and to support the decision-making process.
The target groups of users are potentially all the actors of the Veneto society (see attachment "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 7).
At least 6 user groups have been identified
In general, all the users require an easy way to get access to up-to-date information with a common semantic layer (the concept "geography" for example must be the same for all the users). SÃ¬GOVeÂ contains all the necessary information directly comparable even if coming from different data sources in different format and in different period.
Each user must have access only to the "portion of data" of his interest/responsibility as the access to SÃ¬GOVe is limited only to authorized users.
Inside DSSR users are organized in groups: each groupÂ is focusedÂ on one sector with a vertical vision (i.e. demography vs economy). Other users are focused in creating a cross-functional strategic vision, covering different areas and indicators.
To support the different users, the system provides different functionalities (see attachment "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 7):
To guarantee the success of the SÃ¬GOVe implementation we choose a technology partner - HP Business Intelligence Solutions (HP BIS) in order to address the complexity of the architectural and technical layer.
The success gained was reached merging
The steering committee is constituted by the partner program manager (HP), the IT manager (Veneto Region) and the manager of the statistical department (DSSR Veneto Region). With such a mix all the necessary actions to drive and keep on track the project are in place, allowing to manage all the changes to adapt the initial plan to the actual context and issues.
The operational team is constantly aligned (monthly meetings) with the steering committee strategic vision.
The operational team isÂ made up of
It is important to emphasize the how DSSR approach the information management process.
The core activity in the process of data organization lays in the correct application of statistical methodologies in all the steps of the process. These methodologies are applied in
At the beginning we identified the whole content of the system; then we started with a modular approach, focusing on two areas (10-years thematic census starting from 1971, demographic conditions) and 5 users. In the following years, we implemented other 30 areas and we opened the systems to all the users and stakeholders involved.
At the end of each year a plan is prepared for development of the following year.
The success obtained has guaranteed new budget to go on with the project and to add new functionalities (as dashboard), data sources, reports and so on.
To better match the user needs aÂ continuous training has been put in place in order
Usually the single end-to-end implementation cycle of a sectorÂ (from collecting users requirements to the deployment of the solution in the production environment)Â Â takes a 2/4 months timeframe. For the tasks performed in each module see attachment "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 5.
The cohesion of team members is decisive to reach the goal in an effective way. The HP Business intelligence implementation methodology (BIIM) in the BI / DWH scenario, specifically adopted on the project, allow the team to reach the targets in such a short time.
Today the system consists of 30 information flows, has more than 20 business context of analysis, 350 predefined reports organized in areas, 14 dashboard pages on different subjects (i.e. economy, agriculture, tourism, population). The database schema has more than 500 staging tables, 200 fact tables, 280 dimension tables.
First of all the partner has been evaluated; it was necessary to find out a partner with functional and technical skills andÂ ability to manage complex project. The partners had to support Â the design and implementation of the innovative statistical information system for the Veneto Region, SÃ¬GOVe.
After the choice our IT Department (Veneto Region) and the partner itself focused in the architecture design and the software selection process, evaluating technologies based on a best of breed approach.
Of course, the selection process was guided by both the IT and Business Users requirements to define a newÂ standard and scalableÂ architectureÂ to answer to the following needs:
At the end of the process we identified the new application standard for BI projects in which Oracle RDBMS was the maintained choice for the data layer and the Business Objects suite was the new choice for the data integration, application and presentation layer.
Access to SÃ¬GOVe is allowed in the Intranet of Regione Veneto or through the Internet (http://sigove.regione.veneto.it/InfoViewApp/logon.jsp). In order to access SÃ¬GOVe you have to be an authorized user.Â As of today, direct access to the system is allowed to DSSR users and users belonging to Regione Veneto.
From a technical view point: the web and the application servers are based on HP Proliant technology, while the database is on an HP superdome server.
To see the application architecture please refer "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 7 and 10.
The main results of SÃ¬GOVe are
These improvements, that reduced the low-value work by many orders of magnitude, let the analysts and other users to focus on their high-value activities: create analysis from many information sources, evaluate the situation and support the decision process.
The data integration process has been drastically simplified.Â
The users (politicians, council members, analysts ...) can reach a clear picture of the Veneto Region situation in a shorter time and they can compare "local" results to other significant National or International Regions.
The architecture and the strategic ideas that are at the basis of SÃ¬GOVe can be replicated in other context (national, regional and subregional). SÃ¬GOVe collects and manages information related to Veneto and for benchmarking with other Italian and European regions. We think that the SÃ¬GOVe content structure could be quite the same for all the local public government institutions as the aspects of the social life (economy, territory, demography, ...) are the same. This project can be used as a starting framework that can be easily transferred to other public institutions.
The whole architecture, in terms of types of applications, data model, data flows, data integration, information delivery (reports and dashboard) can be redeployed to another region, let's say, simply changing the data that feeds the system (please refer to "02_DSSR_SiGOVe_manager_GTZ_NDRC_chinese_delegation_13112008.pdf" page 8 for topics, page 5 for the information management process, page 7 and 10 for the system solution).
Sharing all this, a similar environment for another region can be deployed very quickly, the amount of time of the deployment depends on the information areas selected as some modules can be selected, others discarded. It is also possible to add new modules to the system.
The experience of the DSSR users and HP partner can also be leveraged.
DSSR users have a deep knowledge on statistical analysis and have already analyzed more than 30 information areas for the deployment in SÃ¬GOVe. They have also prepared about 350 predefined reports plus personal analysis.
Hp Business Intelligence consultants have supported DSSR users in the analysis of all the areas. They have developed the data models and data flows and implemented reports and dashboards.
We would like to emphasize the three main points that we identified to be successful/unsuccessful factors in the SÃ¬GOVe project; they are related to project approach, team structure and sponsorship and data quality.
Team structure and sponsorship