News: 2015 Open Data ThinkTank Report Released

17 June 2015

On 30 April representatives from across Government and Industry attended the 2015 NSW Government Open Data ThinkTank. The final report is being released today which captures discussions and highlights from the event.  

The ThinkTank was opened by the Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation, the Hon. Victor Dominello MP. Speakers at the event included:

  • William Murphy, Deputy Secretary, Service Innovation and Strategy, Office of Finance & Services, who provided a perspective on new opportunities, approaches and priorities
  • Des Mooney and Dr. Steve Woodhouse, Land and Property Information spoke about Foundation Spatial Data
  • Dr. Kerry Taylor, CSIRO presented an overview of the opportunity presented by Linked Open Data for public policy
  • Matt Berger, Australian Bureau of Statistics presented work on the Australian Census Longitudinal Dataset (ACLD) as an example of confidentialisation preserving utility

A highlight from the day was a Government + Industry panel which provided a reality check on open data and judged an open data ‘myth busting’ activity.  Panelists included Fransisco Urbina, Chair, Spatial Industries Business Association NSW, John Hudson, Director ePlanning, NSW Department of Planning, Dr Jenny Donovan, General Manager, Strategic Information and Reporting, NSW Department of Education and Dr Alana Maurushat, Academic Co-director of UNSW Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre and Key Researcher, CRC Data to Decision. Teams were given one of nine commonly-held myths around open data, and were challenged to come up with evidence-based responses to effectively “bust” the myth. It was great to see all 191 participants from both Government and industry interact and ‘myth bust’ commonly held beliefs on this topic. Out of nine myths, six were ‘busted’, identifying three myths where more work was needed.

An international guest, Giulio Quaggiotto, Senior Program Manager for Innovation Skills from NESTA, joined the session from London to talk about big data for public policy.

An afternoon panel session on big data in NSW featured Prof. Mary O’Kane, NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer, and Jeremy Moon, Director Analytics, NSW Procurement, Office of Finance and Services.

Dr. Kate Harrington, Director, Information, Strategic Policy at the Office of Finance and Services closed the day highlighting the priorities for participants. The top three priorities were:

1.       value proposition for release of data

2.       partnerships between government and non-government

3.       priority release schedule for government data

Thank you to all who particpated in making this event a success.

Click here to read the report