PALM DESERT, CA: To drive the "data agenda" for the digital media, marketing, and advertising industry, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has launched a new Data Center of Excellence.

This will operate as an independently funded group within the organisation with a mission "to help advertisers and marketers operationalise their data assets while maintaining quality, transparency, accountability, and consumer protection".

Patrick Dolan, IAB EVP/COO explained that data management is both a reality and a challenge for advertisers and marketers.

"This poses a great opportunity for the new IAB Data Center of Excellence to address key issues, influence the agenda, and set the standards for organisations looking to embrace the power of data," he said.

The new Data Center joins two other comparable IAB-supported offerings – the IAB Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence and the IAB Digital Video Center of Excellence – as entities that fund industry research projects, provide benchmarks, and create actionable insights.

The Data Center's specific tasks will include analysis of data management across platforms; hosting data-focused events; and developing industry best practices, guidelines, and standards for privacy, data security, and consumer data protection. It will also produce educational materials including certification, videos, and webinars.

Joe Zawadzki, CEO of MediaMath, has been selected to head the Data Center of Excellence Board of Directors, leading the organisation's inaugural agenda.

"Given the pace at which new technology is being adopted and the power of 'big data' acknowledged in the value it can create for brands, publishers, and consumers, it was time to come together as an industry," said Zawadzki.

"The IAB Data Center of Excellence will help define best practices, articulate standards, and collaboratively shape the data ecosystem with the consumer, the globe, and the future in mind."

Founding members include Acxiom, Conversant Media, Experian, Integral Ad Science, LiveIntent, Oracle Data Cloud and The Weather Company.

Data sourced from IAB; additional content by Warc staff