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Public Administration News  
Australian State Makes Data Open by Default
Source: http://www.futuregov.asia
Source Date: Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Focus: Knowledge Management in Government
Country: Australia
Created: Nov 26, 2013

New South Wales (NSW), Australia has released the state’s first Open Data Policy forging its commitment to improve the way government agencies interact with citizens. “Open data is at the heart of open government and we have developed a principles-based approach to the way public sector agencies provide access to their information,” said Minister for Finance and Services, Andrew Constance. The Open Data Policy makes NSW Government data open by default. “Agencies start from a position of data openness, with the prerogative in favour of data release, unless there is a specific, overriding reason for data not to be released,” explains the policy document. “We have engaged with the community, industry and the research sector to deliver a policy that drives transparency, accountability and better service delivery to the people of NSW,” the Minister added. “We are making more data available through the State’s central data portal, data.nsw.gov.au, by piloting federation with the Commonwealth, Queensland and South Australian data portals, enabling easy access to their datasets from data.nsw.gov.au.

“Importantly, it will support the development of new apps using government data to improve access to services like public transport’s real-time updates.” To support these collaborative initiatives, the NSW Government is implementing an open access licensing framework to make it easier for agencies and those who use the data to understand and apply open licenses. “AusGOAL, the Australian Government’s’ Open Access Licensing Framework, provides a system by which Government can make appropriate licensing decisions to allow the reuse of data and information in new and innovative ways by the community,” highlighted the Minister. In conjunction with the Open Data Policy, the next online competition for apps4nsw was launched. apps4nsw was the first State Government apps competition in Australia and promotes the use of government data to create innovative web and mobile applications. “Apps are transforming the way we live – from the goods we buy online to the way we travel to work. We look forward to seeing what our passionate developer community creates,” the Minister shared. In the current round of apps4nsw, developers can build apps for the Office of Ageing and Australian Museum. Entries for the competition closes on December 2, 2013. The apps will be ready to be launched by the agencies by February 2014.

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