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Government Accountability Office, Federal Statistical System: Agencies Can Make Greater Use of Existing Data, but Continued Progress Is Needed on Access and Quality Issues (GAO-12-54) (Feb. 24, 2012) (full-text).
GAO was asked to (1) review how the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and agencies improve information collections, (2) evaluate opportunities and constraints for agencies to use administrative data (information collected as part of the administration of a program or held by private companies) with surveys, and (3) assess the benefits and constraints of surveys making greater use of the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS) data and resources.
The GAO recommends that OMB take several actions to improve the broader efficiency of the federal statistical system, including implementing additional quality-control procedures for selected website data, enhancing awareness of ways to meet information collection requirements, better disseminating information on interagency committees, and developing comprehensive guidance for agencies to use when considering data sharing.