The most common way to fund the development of an IDS is through a grant (generally from a local foundation or government agency) to perform a demonstration project that addresses a pressing policy issue in your community. This provides start-up funding for the operations, infrastructure, data integration, and analysis. Demonstration projects illustrate the value of IDS to local stakeholders, and should lead to future project requests and funding. Once an IDS becomes viewed as essential to a jurisdiction’s operations and decision-making, it may become institutionalized as a recurring budget line item.
For this reason, it’s important to build your community’s IDS to address the priority needs of the community and participating agencies. While it’s easy to get lured into buying an expensive, state of the art technology system, it’s more important to have a system that meets your organization’s needs and allows for future growth.