ICSP Presentation

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Statipedia - a platform for collaboration across statistical agencies

  • Barry D. Nussbaum (Chief Statistician, Environmental Protection Agency)
  • Peter B. Meyer (Office of Productivity, Bureau of Labor Statistics)
  • James A. Buszuwski (Office of Compensation and Working Conditions, Bureau of Labor Statistics)
  • Michael J. Messner (Office of Water, Environmental Protection Agency (Wiki Page))
  • 3:00 PM, September 15, 2010
  • Location: BLS conference center


  • Tools and workspaces for statistical staff across agencies
    • With source material for economists and statisticians
    • Available to new employees
    • Not for general public
  • Wiki as Web tool
    • MediaWiki software (same as used by Wikipedia) hosted by EPA
    • Virtually zero cost to maintain the software
    • No special software beyond web browser is needed by user
    • Version control system
    • Search engine
    • Security includes user login, version control, rollback capability, user-blocking (when needed)


Peter - bring in material from your slides 3 & 4

Examples of Statipedia Uses

SAS Community Wiki)

Wiki practices and successes

We learned from and can copy other systems

  • can copy norms, rules, templates, extensions, bots from wikipedia, potentially from Intellipedia, Diplopedia, Bureaupedia, Eurostat, and OECD

We are proposing a platform which is:

  • scientific ; global ; standard; high-morale ; meets all the technical standards; scalable; cheap now and forever; open-source; the right one scientifically ; the standard in our businesses of science and government

The MAX alternative is

  • aimed at different goals: (a) document management (b) discussion board (c) highly secured into separate sub-gardens (e.g. for budget info)
  • not open-source ; not as cheap ; not as flexible ; does not meet all the technical standards (e.g. HTML and TeX) ; not the global standard ; not as fun
    • it isn't quite right for a scientific knowledge collection (one wants standard design for glossary; TeX math formatting; flexible categories, simple design in which it is clear what to do and what we want to achieve; less security overhead)
    • the pilot project doesn't duplicate MAX ; it offers new services

Next Steps

  1. Activate Statipedia on EPA-Extranet
  2. Convene core group of 6-10 statisticians & economists @ "Barn_Raising"
  3. Build the wiki with core group over 2-month period
  4. Add registered users and continue to build the wiki for additional 4 months
  5. Roll out the wiki at ??? meeting, invite gov't wide participation
  6. Success criteria for a Statipedia pilot project
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