Experts Note Rising Demand for the Quality of Open Data

28 april 2016

How is the open data publishing rating for government authorities compiled? What is the right way to publish open data? What is the second Russian National Open Data Contest going to be like? Answers to these and other questions were given during an open data training seminar at the Analytical Center.

The Deputy Head of the Analytical Center Vasily Pushkin reminded those present that the seminar was being held on the instructions of the Open Government Affairs Minister Mikhail Abyzov. “Today we must focus on the results of the open data publishing rating of state authorities that was compiled based on the open data publishing activities in 2015 and Q1 2016,” the expert said. According to him, there are some problems and drawbacks with the methodology used to compile the rating of publishing activity and steps must be taken to address those problems and inconsistencies as soon as possible. “The methodology needs refining and a new rating needs to be published for H1 2016,” Mr. Pushkin pointed out.

Participants in the seminar then discussed the mobile internet as a key trend in open data publishing. People use the mobile internet to access the services that utilize open data. In addition, the new services that are being created put fewer demands on the level of computer literacy of the people using them - users no longer need to be technically savvy to make use of this new breed of services. However, that also means there are more requirements for the quality of information and the quality of its interpretation.

“In the near future the paradigm we are seeing now is going to change,” Mr. Pushkin believes. “Requirements for data and for government authorities are going to change, the trends in how government communicates with the public are going to change as too.” More commercial services will become available and more of them will be offered through various intermediaries, the expert believes. After all, all open data allow business to automate processes, improve the quality of management and take the information culture of society to a whole new level in general.

“Last year we held the All-Russian Summit ‘Open data – 2015’ that was attended by about 600 people and it was already clear then that open data were being used in a broad range of sectors where they are actively being developed,” Mr. Pushkin said.

A number of events have been scheduled for 2016. They include the Open Data national contest, 2 federal hackathons to be held at the Analytical Center and then the main event, the Open Data 2016 national summit where progress made during the year will be looked at.

A lot of work has already been done since the start of 2016 on personal data and information disclosure by municipalities and regional governments. The benefits of participating in such events are obvious: you get free expert assessment and analysis of the quality of your open data, plus you get to talk to people that use them.

The seminar was preceded by a webinar on how to properly publish open data and why publishing open data is beneficial, during which problems were discussed most often encountered when open data are handled by regional governments and municipalities across Russia.

The training seminar and the webinar were held for heads of units at federal executive authorities responsible for ICT and transparency.