HUD’s NHLS Leverages Public-Private Partnerships to Better Serve Citizens
CHANTILLY, Va., June 19, 2008 — Citizant, one of the Washington region’s leading providers of government professional technical solutions, is pleased to announce that the company’s collaboration with U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) on the National Housing Locator System (NHLS) won the Intergovernmental Solutions Award (ISA) from the American Council for Technology (ACT).
The ACT ISA program recognizes IT projects that demonstrate how adopting best practices—from government as well as from industry–leads to measurable improvements in the efficiency and effectiveness of government programs. This year ACT received more than 80 nominations, with 18 finalists and five winners selected by a committee of government and industry IT professionals. The winners were announced on Monday, June 9th at the 28th Annual Management of Change Conference (MOC).
The 2008 winning ISA programs were chosen based on stringent criteria in five categories:
- Intergovernmental and Collaborative
- Technology Leadership and Innovations
- Business Transformation
- Measurable Impact and Results
- Available to be replicated by other organizations.
Citizant began working with HUD in 2006 to develop the NHLS, a Web-based system for federal, state, and local agencies to rapidly identify available housing for people displaced from their homes by a disaster. One of the lessons learned from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita was that the government lacked a national inventory of available housing to accommodate evacuees.
HUD closed this gap with an inter-governmental tool designed with Web 2.0 technologies. The system combines federal housing resources with select information from commercial housing locators and Web sites in one portal to rapidly identify available housing based on various search options. NHLS also incorporates a case-management tool to help disaster-recovery specialists track and update the housing referrals already made. Web-service capabilities allow other agencies, including FEMA, to share NHLS housing data and embed it into their applications.
“Collaborating with HUD, we have delivered a solution that truly makes a difference in the lives of the citizens – we are proud of this and honored to be recognized by ACT,” said Alba M. Alemán, president of Citizant. “Just as Web 2.0 services have transformed the American social and commercial online experience, now Gov 2.0 applications like NHLS have begun to transform the way American government works. Gov 2.0 has great potential to usher in rapid advancements in effective citizen service and inter-agency information sharing – at a fraction of traditional software development methods.”
About ACT-IAC – Where the Government IT Community Meets
The American Council for Technology (ACT) is a non-profit educational organization founded in 1979 to assist government in serving the public through the effective and efficient acquisition of information technology (IT) resources. ACT provides education, programming, and networking opportunities to enhance and advance the government IT profession.
In 1989, ACT established the Industry Advisory Council (IAC) to foster a collaborative environment between industry and government in the IT arena. Through this collaboration, Industry and government executives exchange information, support professional development, improve communications, and build partnerships.
ACT-IAC has been recognized as the premier public-private partnership in the government IT community and as an example of how government and industry can work together. Through this unique relationship, ACT-IAC provides an objective, professional, and ethical forum for government and industry leaders to address common issues towards a shared vision. For more information, visit www.actgov.org or call (703) 208-4800.