Data-driven research is hard work, but you don't have to go it alone. In this section we focus on how to work with other organizations to accomplish greater things than you could on your own.
CSOs, journalists, and other groups that work with a lot of data encounter a set of similar problems. The problems typically include lack of technical knowledge, duplication of work, lack of wide dissemination of analysis and results, and difficulties creating compelling visual products.
These challenges could be overcome if proper channels of communication existed between these organizations. You can avoid your predecessors' mistakes by learning about their methodologies and the idiosyncrasies in their data. Similarly, if you document how your data has been processed and analyzed, you can save pain for others.
One of the most important ways to reduce technical barriers in data-driven research is to maintain an active dialogue between researchers and to foster the culture of sharing methodologies and data.
There are many ways to create this dialogue:
Consider making a special effort to reach out to groups that work on issues completely different from your own. Especially if these groups represent minority populations or other groups who are marginalized in government spending priorities, they may feel incapacitated to create change in fiscal policy, and your support can have a real impact.
Collaboration can result in a much broader and stronger coalition of organizations that can advocate for fiscal transparency and detailed disclosure of spending data at all levels of government.
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