How did the Justice XML initiative get started; why is it needed?

Since the initiation of justice systems integration in the United States, practitioners have generally worked with vendors to develop unique and proprietary solutions to their individual information-sharing needs, either within one agency or within a specific jurisdiction. These technical solutions, while solving immediate information-sharing objectives, created many independent systems and limited their ability to share information among other systems throughout the nation.

In 2001, a formal effort was undertaken to reconcile several of the XML specifications developed by justice practitioners. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) funded meetings of the following organizational representatives:
• The Joint Task Force on Rap Sheet Standardization, which developed an Interstate Criminal History Transmission Specification using XML.
• The Institute for Intergovernmental Research (IIR), which developed the Regional Information Sharing System.
• The LegalXML Court Filing Workgroup, which developed an Electronic Court Filing Standard using XML.
• The American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, which was working to develop Driver and Vehicle transactions in XML.

These meetings resulted in a reconciliation of these various XML data standards into a common Justice XML Data Dictionary (JXDD). The first JXDD (Version 1.0) depicted the elements in a Microsoft Access database. Subsequent versions (2.0 and 2.1) of JXDD represented the 1.0 elements as XML schema.
These early efforts were critical to the development of the current GJXDM—an effort undertaken as part of the DOJ’s Global Justice Information Sharing Initiative supported by the XML Structure Task Force

The development of the Global Justice XML Data Model (GJXDM), which incorporates a comprehensive Global Justice XML Data Dictionary, represents a significant change in the way practitioners will develop their information-sharing systems. GJXDM provides a common language with which justice entities can describe, structure, and share information on criminal justice matters and offenders within a locality, the state, among the states, or with federal or tribal entities.