The need for data standards is increasingly becoming itself a kind of standard. Any organization which wants to prove its efficiency, openness, and orientation toward digital business, must embrace data standards as a core part of its strategy.
It's now common to see statements along these lines: “Information about our communities that is clear, consistent, and available in useful forms can support our efforts to develop well-provisioned, human-centred communities and cities... Information has always been a critical resource for good decision making...”
Do we need to remind people that decision making requires information? Often, we do. Gathering, assessing, and acting on information is right at the center of any course in management, so the process should be well understood and disseminated. But of course there's lots more going on in our organizations (and our lives) than just the cool, rational evaluation of good quality information relevant to our decision making responsibilities. And all that other stuff is often more fun and more urgent.
Rational decision making isn't everything, it's true. Leadership and innovation need plenty of other skills too. However, the vital role of information can easily be overlooked. This is one reason why the orthodoxy of data standards is such a good thing. By implementing data standards, organizations provide themselves with an efficient, permanent infrastructure to facilitate their decision making. They thereby promote better decisions across the organization.