ERIC Number: ED414477
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Dec-5
Reference Count: N/A
Welfare Reform and Information Management: Rewiring the Human Service System. Rockefeller Report No. 5.
Maxwell, Terrence A.
The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 places vast new information burdens on state and local governments and the nonprofit and private sectors. Three classes of problems confront program and information managers implementing welfare reform: developing information infrastructure, redesigning applications to meet new management needs, and developing efficient cross-organizational data exchange methods. Internal welfare networks need to connect electronically with external partners to meet mandates for state reporting and the 5-year limit on welfare benefits. Expansion of the welfare information network beyond traditional boundaries poses major management challenges: financial, coordination and standards development, and support capacity. A far more robust and integrated information system must encompass five types of information: client characteristics, process, environment, cost, and outcome. Current welfare systems are fairly well developed in the areas of process, demographic, and cost data. However, state and local information systems must support the monitoring of client and staff actions to meet outcomes, and variation in program design makes set treatments to achieve national outcomes problematic. The requirement of cross-organization and cross-system information exchange contained in the act raises serious issues of data integrity. Significant investments are required in information system upgrades, modifications, new purchases, and investments in worker training and education. (YLB)
Publication Type: Reports - General
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: State Univ. of New York, Albany. Nelson A. Rockefeller Inst. of Government.
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunities Reconciliation Act