The Philippine government will be launching the national open data portal, data.gov.ph, by end of November which will serve as a repository for public national government datasets that can be easily accessed by the public.
Maria Teresita Semana, Director III, Policy, Planning, Research & Information at the Commission on Higher Educations (CHED), told FutureGov that the initiative is being led by President Aquino, through the Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office (PCDSPO), World Bank, and the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).
“What President Aquino, the PCDSPO and DBM did was to appoint an open data champion for each government agency. The role entails the management of data sets and leading the agency’s open data initiatives.”
In the case of the Commission on Higher Education, Semana was appointed as the agency’s open data champion. She shares that the most exciting part of her job is identifying what kind of data sets would be of great interest to the citizens.
“The government is the single largest source of big data; however we cannot simply publish all of that in the portal. CHED for example, handles all the data of 2318 higher education institutions and 110 State Universities and Colleges. So if you think about it, how do we make big data more meaningful and useful to citizens?”
“We have data on enrolment, education key performance indicators, budgeting, graduates, and school facilities. By making them available on the open data portal would allow students to see which courses are oversubscribed and which programmes fit the requirements of the industry. By doing so, they are able to confidently decide what course or programme they should pursue in college.”
Likewise, industry stakeholders can also study whether the present supply of graduates and labour force can meet the emerging needs of various industries.
“Data is power. The more we leverage it, the more we are able to sustainably plan for our future,” she says.