Skip to Content

UPPS 04.02.05 - Data Governance Program

Data Governance Program

UPPS No. 04.02.05
Issue No. 3
Effective Date: 8/06/2018
Next Review Date: 6/01/2021 (E3Y)
Sr. Reviewer: Director, Institutional Research and Chief Data Governance Officer


    1. University data are institutional assets integral for informed decision- making in support of Texas State University’s mission. The administrative and academic units must serve as stewards of these data, working together to properly manage and protect these assets. Therefore, a centralized approach to data management must be in place to ensure consistency in data quality, integrity, availability, access, and reporting.

    2. This policy outlines the objectives of the Data Governance Program. It defines the structure and responsibilities of the governing entities allowing for effective and efficient management and use of university data. The Data Governance Program provides a centralized mechanism to:

      1. promote data and information quality through widely accepted data and reporting standards, definitions, documentation, and best practices;

      2. provide access to data in an efficient and effective manner;

      3. communicate data quality and reporting initiatives across the institution;

      4. assign stewardship responsibility and accountability for university data; and

      5. empower the governing entities to develop and enforce policies and procedures that promote consistent data management and reporting for informed decision-making.


    1. Adherence to certain principles and standards is key to the success of the Data Governance Program. These principles and standards include:

      1. Transparency – Data governance processes will exhibit transparency; it should be clear to all participants and auditors how and when data-related decisions and controls were introduced into the processes.

      2. Auditability – Data-related decisions, processes, and controls subject to the Data Governance Program will be auditable; they will be accompanied by documentation to support compliance-based and operational auditing requirements.

      3. Accountability – The program will define accountabilities for cross-functional data-related decisions, processes, and controls.

      4. Stewardship – The program will strive for the responsible and accountable management of data.

  3. SCOPE

    1. The Data Governance Program supports the business objectives of Texas State, addressing data ownership, stewardship, integrity, access, privacy, classification, and reporting for all Texas State data including student, faculty, human resources, finance, facilities, and alumni or donor data elements, wherever they reside. Data elements related to police, medical, counseling, legal, and disability records are excluded from this policy.

    2. This policy applies to all individuals whose affiliation with Texas State requires or permits access to university data, without regard to the manner, form, or location of access.

    3. The policies and procedures of the Data Governance Program specifically exclude matters of data security (see policies included under Section 04.01, Computing Services, on the University Policies website, for detailed information regarding data security and access).


    1. Data Consumer – an employee or agent of the university who accesses university data in performance of their assigned duties. A data consumer is expected to be familiar with and abide by all data governance and data security policies and procedures.

    2. Data Dictionary – a set of information describing and defining the contents, format, and structure of a database and the relationship among its elements.

    3. Data Element – any defined unit of data.

    4. Data Governance – encompasses the people, processes, and technology required to create consistent and proper handling of data and understanding of information across the organization, ignoring the boundaries created by organizational structures.

    5. Data Governance Program – the framework to manage university data effectively, efficiently, and ethically in support of the university’s mission.

    6. Data Steward – an individual responsible for planning, implementing, and managing the sourcing, use, documentation, and maintenance of data assets in an organization.

    7. Data Stewardship – the management and protection of an organization’s data assets that results in high-quality data that are easily accessible and reportable.

    8. Functional Area – a department that represents and serves a particular sub-set of university data.

    9. Metadata – describes how and when a particular set of data was collected and how the data are formatted, necessary for understanding how data are stored in data warehouses.

    10. Stakeholder – an employee who affects, or would be affected by, data policy or procedural change. A stakeholder requests data, initiates requests for changes to university data and identifies problems with university data that are impeding normal daily operations. He or she provides input or feedback that assists with the process of satisfying any change request.

    11. Subject Matter Expert (SME) – any employee with extensive knowledge of given functional, technical, reporting, or security-related data issues.

    12. University Data – any data element used in the management and operation of Texas State.


    1. The Data Governance Program establishes the structure and defines the roles needed for effective data governance. The chief data governance officer provides oversight of the Data Governance Program and shares the managerial function with the executive sponsors and Data Governance Council.

    2. All university employees assigned to the Data Governance Program are to consider any associated responsibilities as part of their regular job duties, not as assignments in addition to their regular job. Supervisors of these individuals are to adjust workloads and schedules to allow for data governance activities, adding these duties to the Performance Management System when necessary.

    3. Council and committee representation is shown in a Council and Committee Representation List, and organization is shown in a Data Governance Organizational Chart. The Data Governance Program organization structure is as follows:

      1. The executive sponsors are executive-level university officials who provide direction with regard to data stewardship and reporting needs. They stand in support of the Data Governance Program and serve as an advising board for the chief data governance officer.

      2. The chief data governance officer facilitates and coordinates data governance and stewardship activities, and works with the executive sponsors, Data Governance Council, and data governance sub-committees to develop and implement data governance policies and procedures on behalf of the university. The chief data governance officer chairs the Data Governance Council, appoints the council officers, and works with the council officers to appoint the council members.

      3. The Data Governance Council is a presidential council comprised of council officers and one or more representatives from each division. These data stewards direct data governance activities in support of the university’s mission. The council officers who appoint divisional representatives and manage the council are: the chief data governance officer (ex-officio chair); the deputy chief data governance officer (vice-chair); the lead reporting steward; the lead functional steward; and the lead technical steward. The rights and privileges of each member, as well as the meeting schedule, are set in the Council Charter and Bylaws. The Council is responsible for:

        1. developing data governance policies and procedures;

        2. ensuring adherence to data governance policies and procedures;

        3. securing funding for data governance activities;

        4. arbitrating escalated data issues;

        5. directing shared data governance activities across the university through its guidance of the data governance sub-committees and data governance working groups;

        6. coordinating training and support programs for data consumers;

        7. developing, maintaining, and documenting data and reporting standards;

        8. identifying and resolving cross-functional data issues;

        9. developing goals and metrics for the data governance program;

        10. informing stakeholders of important data and reporting issues; and

        11. assigning additional data stewardship roles as necessary.

      4. Data governance sub-committees are standing sub-committees, formed by the Data Governance Council, comprised of function and technical data stewards and SMEs from one or more department or area. It is expected that each sub-committee will be chaired by a member of the Data Governance Council, or a delegate. These sub-committees are responsible for operational data quality, usage, and reporting within their areas. Specifically, they:

        1. monitor compliance with data-related policies and legal or regulatory requirements, and report any issues of concern to the Data Governance Council;

          1. define procedures and ensure any maintenance, use, and release of data is in compliance with UPPS No. 04.01.01, Security of Texas State Information Resources; and

          2. approve requests for access to area-specific institutional data, following UPPS No. 04.01.02, Information Resources Identity and Access Management;

        2. develop and maintain documentation, including data dictionaries and metadata for data elements;

        3. monitor data quality and develop programs and procedures for data quality improvement; and

        4. resolve issues assigned to them by the Data Governance Council.

      5. Data governance working groups are temporary work groups, formed by the Data Governance Council, to solve a defined data quality issue. These can be made up of any combination of data stewards, SMEs, stakeholders, and data consumers.


    1. All data governance procedures are developed by the Data Governance Council and, depending upon the scope, will be added to this section of the Data Governance Program policy or as additional university policy and procedure statements.

    1. Reviewers of this UPPS include the following:

      Position Date
      Director, Institutional Research and Chief Data Governance Officer June 1 E3Y
      Assistant Vice President, Institutional Research June 1 E3Y
      Director, Enterprise Systems and Deputy Chief Data Governance Officer June 1 E3Y
      Associate Vice President for Technology Resources June 1 E3Y
      Associate Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness June 1 E3Y
      Vice President for Information Technology June 1 E3Y

    This UPPS has been approved by the following individuals in their official capacities and represents Texas State policy and procedure from date of this document until superseded.

    Director, Institutional Research and Chief Data Governance Officer; senior reviewer of this UPPS

    Assistant Vice President for Institutional Research

    Associate Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness

    Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs