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Posts Tagged ‘platform’

By blogging and twittering, you get to communicate with people around the world. I wanted to take this opportunity to understand the different point of views and evolution of opendata and opengov in Europe.
Here follow is the first chapter of this european tour starting with Sweden.



Can you introduce yourself ?

My name is Peter Krantz and I run the opengov.se website. opengov.se is a personal project to highlight public datasets in Sweden and how few of them are openly available. The questions below are answered in my role as a citizen.

Is there an existing national law evoking opendata in your country ?

Sweden is currently implementing the PSI directive. The law proposal is available here:Regeringen.se The essence of the proposal does not take open data very far. A second law proposal indicates that electronic access to public records (including data) may become easier in the future: http://www.regeringen.se/sb/

What are the strengths and weaknesses of the law ?

The current proposal aims to implement the bare minimum of the PSI directive in my opinion. As a background we have had an open access to public records policy for a long time. However, many agencies are partially funded by selling data. This makes it difficult to implement a government-wide open data policy as the government also need to change the budget policy.

How long has your country been working on openingdata ?

Not very long. The current governement is responsible in implementing the law.

Who are the main actors of opengov in your country ?

From the citizen perspective my own initiative opengov.se. In the current government it is the Minister for Local Government and Financial Markets: Mats Odell: Sweden.gov.se

What are the main bareers ?

In my opinion, the funding model of some agencies. E.g. geographical data such as maps currently funds part of the agency maintaining it: Lantmateriet.se Making the data open and free requires a change in government funding of agencies.

Which cities or states in your country are the most involved in Opendata ?

A while ago the city of Stockholm created an initiative to increase access to data: http://www.opengov.se/blogg/2010/stockholm-pa-vag-mot-oppen-data/

Is the e-ID card available yet ?

Sweden has had e-IDs available for many years (see http://www.e-legitimation.se/). A new federated model for e-ID has been proposed and may become implemented next year.

In a few word, what is the state of play of Open Government in Sweden ?

Gaining traction but a long way to go.

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I have not been lazy lately, meeting many organizations involved in gov20 and elaborating different plans to make things happen locally. I have learnt that a near city has just hired someone to work on edemocracy and e-participation! Concerning liberTIC’s activity, another step will be made next month so stay in touch.

Here follow is a guide I’ve been reading for my studies.

Almost ten years ago, OECD suggested the stillupdated following guiding principles for successful information, consultation and active participation in policy-making:

1.Commitment

Leadership and strong commitment to information, consultation and active participation in policy-making is needed at all levels – from politicians, senior managers and public officials.

2. Rights

Citizens rights to access information, provide feedback, be consulted and actively participate in policy-making must be firmly grounded in law or policy. Government obligations to respond to citizens when exercising their rights must also be clearly stated. Independent institutions for oversight, or their equivalent, are essential to enforcing these rights.

3.Clarity

Objectives for, and limits to, information, consultation and active participation during policy-making should be well defined from the outset. The respective roles and responsibilities of citizens (in providing input) and government (in making decisions for which they are accountable) must be clear to all.

4. Time

Public consultation and active participation should be undertaken as early in the policy process as possible to allow a greater range of policy solutions to emerge and to raise the chances of successful implementation. Adequate time must be available for consultation and participation to be effective. Information is needed at all stages of the policy cycle.

5. Objectivity

Information provided by government during policy-making should be objective, complete and accessible. All citizens should have equal treatment when exercising their rights of access to information and participation.

6. Resources

Adequate financial, human and technical resources are needed if public information, consultation and active participation in policy-making are to be effective. Government officials must have access to appropriate skills, guidance and training as well as an organisational culture that supports their efforts.

7. Co-ordination

Initiatives to inform, request feedback from and consult citizens should be co-ordinated across government to enhance knowledge management, ensure policy coherence, avoid duplication and reduce the risk of consultation fatigue among citizens and civil society organisations (CSOs). Co-ordination efforts should not reduce the capacity of government units to pursue innovation and ensure flexibility.

8. Accountability

Governments have an obligation to account for the use they make of citizens inputs received through feedback, public consultation and active participation. Measures to ensure that the policy-making process is open, transparent and amenable to external scrutiny and review are crucial to increasing government accountability overall.

9. Evaluation

Governments need the tools, information and capacity to evaluate their performance in providing information, conducting consultation and engaging citizens in order to adapt to new requirements and changing conditions for policy-making.

10. Active citizenship

Governments benefit from active citizens and a dynamic civil society and can take concrete actions to facilitate access to information and participation, raise awareness, strengthen citizens civic education and skills as well as to support capacity-building among civil society organisations.

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