South Australia now requires all government agencies to ensure that their data is available to the public, as the State Government launches a series of initiatives to kickstart its open data programme.
South Australian Premier, Jay Weatherill, noted, “We want South Australia to be vibrant and innovative so we are opening up our data to industry, community groups, digital entrepreneurs and start-up companies. This will create an enormous economic benefit to the state through the development of smartphone and web-based applications and will enable informed investment decision making.”
The Premier has officially launched the South Australian Government’s open data portal – data.sa.
“As the custodian of a significant amount of data, the State Government can help to fuel a boom in the local digital marketplace, but it’s equally important that industry and community groups release their data too,” he added.
The Office of the Chief Information Officer is to lead an Open Data Action Plan to guide agencies in classifying, licensing and releasing their data, while maintaining highest standards of privacy, security and integrity.
The Government also launched its inaugural open data challenge, Unleashed. It brought together more than 100 digital entrepreneurs to use government data to create new applications, visualisation tools and websites.
The Premier has extended this challenge to be an annual event. “Unleashed now will take place annually and I’m confident that even more digital entrepreneurs will use open data to create exciting new ways to benefit their community,” he said.
South Australia’s open data initiatives are a leading force in the development of an open data policy at a national level through the Council of the Australian Federation, an intergovernmental forum for State and Territory leaders.
There are currently 229 open data sets on the data.sa portal, provided by agencies across the Government. The Premier remarked, “We already have among the highest number of data sets openly licensed in Australia. Opening our data to all means that we can work together to design policy and projects that will benefit our citizens.”