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Kundra: Federal Data Centers ‘Sprout Like Weeds,’ Need to be Trimmed

Federal CIO Vivek Kundra, Photo: OMB.gov

Federal Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra’s plan to shutter some 800 data centers over the next three years — 137 of them by the end of this year, alone — was proof positive that the administration’s tough talk on consolidating wasteful federal IT spending was coming to fruition.

The administration’s rhetoric overall has emphasized cutting back and forcing the government to live within its means.

Yesterday in a blog post on CIO.gov, Kundra said cutting wasteful and duplicative IT spending is a good place to start.

“When it comes to information technology, there is no better way to identify duplication than to look at the very infrastructure that powers duplicative systems,” he wrote, noting the exponential growth in federal data centers — from 432 in 1998 to more than 2,000 now.

“The proliferation of infrastructure has created an environment that enables redundant systems and applications to sprout like weeds – with hundreds of redundant applications, more than 24,000 websites and hundreds of HR and financial management systems across the government,” he added.

The 800 centers slated for closing represent 40 percent of the the federal IT inventory, Kundra said, and could save as much as $3 billion.

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