United States Digital Service

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United States Digital Service
U.S. Digital Service Logo.svg
Agency overview
Formed11 August 2014 (2014-08-11)
Headquarters736 Jackson Place, Washington, D.C.
Agency executive
Parent departmentExecutive Office of the President of the United States

The United States Digital Service is an elite technology unit[1][2] housed within the Executive Office of the President of the United States. It provides consultation services to federal agencies on information technology. It seeks to improve and simplify digital service, and to improve federal websites. It was launched on August 11, 2014.[3][4][5][6]

The US Digital Service is the creator of:

  • A Digital Services Playbook, for improving digital government[7]
  • Draft Web Design Standards, "to build accessible, mobile-friendly government websites"[8]
  • TechFAR Handbook, on federal contracting and procurement[9][10]
  • Discovery Sprint Guide[11]

The United States Digital Service submits a report to Congress each year detailing its projects and accomplishments.[12] Its federal agency work spans across the Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense, Small Business Administration, General Services Administration, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Education, and Health and Human Services.

The United States Digital Service was the brainchild of Jennifer Pahlka, who took the job of US Deputy CTO in 2013 with the goal of creating an elite government technology unit at the White House that would be equivalent to the UK Government Digital Service.[13] The first head of the US Digital Service was Mikey Dickerson, a former Google engineer who was involved in the 2013–14 rescue of HealthCare.gov website.[14] He was succeeded by Matt Cutts, who stepped down in April 2021.[15] The third administrator of the United States Digital Service was Mina Hsiang.[16][17][18] During the Biden administration, Hsiang led USDS in deploying a new website to target COVID-19 vaccines, Vaccines.gov. [19] In 2021, USDS employs 215 people and is looking to expand further.[20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Zakrzewski, Cat (5 December 2018). "The government's tech unit is trying to reduce wait times for asylum seekers". The Washington Post.
  2. ^ Lapowsky, Issie (2019-03-14). "Kamala Harris Wants to Give States Millions to Overhaul Tech". Wired. ISSN 1059-1028. Retrieved 2019-03-14.
  3. ^ "FACT SHEET: Improving and Simplifying Digital Service". The White House. 2014-08-11. Retrieved 2015-04-19.
  4. ^ Scola, Nancy (2014-08-11). "White House launches 'U.S. Digital Service,' with HealthCare.gov fixer at the helm". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2015-04-19.
  5. ^ Howard, Alex (2014-08-13). "New US Digital Service Looks to Avoid IT Catastrophes". TechPresident. Retrieved 2015-04-19. link unavailable as of 28 May 2021
  6. ^ Shear, Michael D (2014-08-11). "White House Picks Engineer From Google to Fix Sites". The New York Times. Retrieved 2015-04-19.
  7. ^ Digital Services Playbook
  8. ^ Draft Web Design Standards
  9. ^ Scola, Nancy (2014-08-25). "How the U.S. Digital Service could upset D.C.'s 'IT vendor ecosystem'". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2015-04-19.
  10. ^ Rockwell, Mark (2015-03-13). "OFPP launches podcast series to talk TechFAR, playbook". FCW Insider. Retrieved 2015-04-19.
  11. ^ "Discovery Sprint Guide". sprint.usds.gov. Retrieved 2021-11-24.
  12. ^ "United States Digital Service". United States Digital Service. Retrieved 2018-04-18.
  13. ^ Levy, Steven (2017-01-18). "The Final Days of Obama's Tech Surge". Wired Magazine. Retrieved 2018-11-10.
  14. ^ Brill, Stephen (2014-02-27). "Obama's Trauma Team". Time Magazine. Retrieved 2015-04-19. (subscription required)
  15. ^ Cutts, Matt (2021-04-14). "The Next Chapter for USDS". U.S. Digital Service Blog. Retrieved 2021-08-20.
  16. ^ "Office of Management and Budget Announces Mina Hsiang As New Administrator of the United States Digital Service". The White House. Retrieved 2021-10-05.
  17. ^ "Mina Hsiang appointed USDS administrator". FedScoop. 2021-09-02. Retrieved 2021-10-05.
  18. ^ Service, U. S. Digital (2021-09-02). "Introducing the Administrator of the U.S. Digital Service: Mina Hsiang". U.S. Digital Service. Retrieved 2021-10-05.
  19. ^ "Exclusive: New boss for government's tech "SWAT team"". 2 September 2021.
  20. ^ "Great Resignation boosts White House's tech talent hunt". 18 January 2022.
  21. ^ "U.S. Digital Corps". digitalcorps.gsa.gov. Retrieved 2021-11-24.

External links[edit]