The Analytical Center has held a Round Table 'Public Authorities: Typical Open Data Sets and Publication Activity.' Participants discussed information public authorities publish as open data, the structure of the said information and the scope of data recommended for publication. A separate discussion revolved around the rating of public authorities based on the frequency of their publications on the Open Data portal of the Russian Federation.
'Regions badly need standardized solutions for the publication of Open Data, there is an acute shortage of experts and general lack of understanding of how this kind of work has to be organized,' said Vasily Pushkin, the Deputy Head of the Analytical Center, as he opened the event.
The expert reminded those present that the Analytical Center analyzes the data found on the Open Data portal of the Russian Federation and then rates public authorities based on the frequency of publications on the portal. The publication activity of public authorities is monitored to implement a directive of the Open Data Council. The first rating was presented late last year at the Russian National Summit 'Open Data 2015.' From 2016 onward, the publication activity rating will be compiled on a quarterly basis, Mr. Pushkin said. 'We shall rate the publication activity of regional governments, municipal governments and other public authorities that release Open Data in order to encourage them to publish more data and pay their attention to the goals and results that can be achieved if Open Data sharing is organized properly,' Mr. Pushkin believes.
Aleksey Shiryaev, the Advisor to the Department for Legal Expertise of the Analytical Center, talked in more details about the problems of analyzing publication activity. 'First of all, not all public authorities release their publications through the main portal but that is a problem that can be easily solved by moving the data they publish from their official portals to the main Open Data portal,' the expert said. 'Secondly, the assessment methodology we use does not allow us to build a single rating that takes into account all the parameters, and what we need here is to develop an aggregate coefficient that would characterize both executive authorities and regional governments on several parameters at the same time.’ Since data published on the Open Data portal is analyzed, executive public authorities should be recommended to release their publications both on their official websites and on the main portal simultaneously, according to the expert.
Participants of the Round Table noted that it is information published by the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation that is most popular (based on the number of downloads), while the Federal Statistics Service publishes the largest amounts of information. The experts noted that up to 50 % of the federal data never get downloaded or even looked at because a lot of them are completely irrelevant, so efforts should be made to ensure public authorities provide more relevant information on the portal.