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The U.S. Census Bureau last night was named one of the top five 2011 Laureates for Business Responsiveness by International Data Group's (IDG) Computerworld Honors Program. The recognition was for the Census Bureau's innovative use of cloud computing solutions for the 2010 Census website. The program honors visionary applications of information technology promoting positive social, economic and educational change, and the Census Bureau was recognized for innovation which improved customer responsiveness.
“We are honored Computerworld has acknowledged our efforts to reach every American in the 2010 Census campaign,” said Census Bureau Director Robert Groves. “The 2010census.gov website was a critical part of our ability to communicate with the public and improve customer relations during 2010 Census.”
The Census Bureau used cloud computing technology during the 2010 Census to provide a more cost-effective and accurate delivery of its services to its employees and to the public. The project helped to ensure the secure, accurate and cost-effective marketing and awareness campaign of the 2010 Census.
“We saved taxpayers $1.5 million by leveraging Akamai's cloud computing network for 2010census.gov,” said Brian McGrath, the Census Bureau's chief information officer. “By using Akamai's network, the Census Bureau did not have to build a costly infrastructure that would only be used for a short time during the decennial census.”
In planning for the 2010 Census, the Census Bureau needed a secure, reliable network to handle increased traffic to its website during the motivational campaign. In January 2010, the Census Bureau began using Akamai's cloud computing services to enhance the performance of 2010census.gov, which features video clips, blogs and other interactive content. At its peak, 2010census.gov attracted 4 million to 5 million hits a week. Akamai was insurance against exceeding the bandwidth of Census Bureau servers through the high volume of visitors to the enhanced 2010 Web presence.
The Computerworld Honors Program is governed by the not-for-profit Computerworld Information Technology Awards Foundation. Computerworld Honors is the longest running global program to honor individuals and organizations that use information technology to promote positive social, economic and educational change.
In addition to be recognized by Computerworld, the 2010 Census communications campaign has received other honors. In May, the National Association of Government Communicators awarded the Census Bureau with seven Blue Pencil/Gold Screen awards. In March, the Advertising Research Foundation awarded the Census bureau with two David Ogilvy Awards of Excellence in advertising research. Last year, Mediaweek, a leading advertising industry trade publication, honored the 2010 Census advertising campaign with the “Best Multiculture Campaign” and “Best Branded Content.”