Utility involves the usefulness and availability of the information to its intended audience. To produce useful, policy-relevant information, agencies must stay informed of information needs and develop new data, models, and information products where appropriate.
RRB will keep informed of information needs through active and ongoing contact with the user community and will provide vehicles for user input into our information programs. RRB keeps abreast of information needs with respect to the analysis of RRB programs through a variety of means, including carrying out internal analyses of information requirements, convening and attending conferences, conducting user surveys, working with advisory committees, and sponsoring outreach activities. Contact information is available, where appropriate, on a variety of information products to allow for questions, comments, and suggestions from users.
RRB's analytical and statistical publications and other information products will be reviewed to ensure that they remain relevant and timely and that they address current information needs. On the basis of internal product reviews and consultation with users, and in response to changing needs and emphases, the content of ongoing information products is changed, new products are introduced, and some products are discontinued. RRB prepares special reports and topical studies that address emerging information needs stemming from proposed changes in the law and related policy debates. RRB identifies requirements for simulation models to support the preparation of analytical reports and policy studies and modifies its current models or develops new models accordingly. When major gaps in data related to RRB populations are identified, RRB may conduct special-purpose surveys to address those needs.
RRB's information dissemination process will make information products widely available and broadly accessible. Most reports and other data products are available both as printed and electronic documents. They are announced on the RRB Web site, and most electronic versions can be accessed and downloaded directly. All documents posted on our Web site since June 21, 2001, are in compliance with section 508 and are therefore available to an audience that includes persons who have a visual impairment and read online using assistive technology.