[@OKau] Qn's from Government re GovHack

Rosie Williams budgetaus at hotmail.com
Wed May 13 23:35:51 UTC 2015

Hi people, 
It occurred to me after I'd posted that there may be concerns not so much about the way the general public deals with data but other interest groups such as corporate interests and it's a pretty difficult question as to how to respond to potential deliberate misinformation? Just look at the climate debate for example.
I do, of course agree with Pia about the point of opening data being to expose it to scrutiny and debate. 
It also seems that the person communicating on behalf of the agency in question may not understand the difference between data in it's raw form and data that has been put through a process of being made suitable (a process which from the outside I have no detailed knowledge of but just assume it takes place). 

Rosie Williams BA (Sociology)________________________________________
 NoFibs.com.au - Open Data Reporter | InfoAus.net - Founder and Developer 

From: ben at odiqueensland.org.au
Date: Thu, 14 May 2015 09:14:50 +1000
To: okfn-au at lists.okfn.org
CC: gogadgetmason at gmail.com; rosetta.mills at gmail.com; alisha.ryans-taylor at melbourne.vic.gov.au
Subject: Re: [@OKau] Qn's from Government re GovHack

Just entering this discussion.
A few points that may add value to Pia’s thoughts.  
A lot depends on the actual data that is considered for public release.  Department of Human Services manages huge amounts of data about individuals and this ‘raw’ data cannot be released for privacy reasons.  Data derived from the internal analysis of this personal data could be released if it meets certain privacy and related rules.  DHS will be creating such analysis for their own use to support and improve service delivery.
The release of any data would need to be supported by senior management and it is this level of management that  needs assurances of minimum risk to their Department, their Minister and Government in general.  The easiest answer is to not release any data, and then there is no risk.  A senior manager with an open mind and understanding of the real vs perceived risks is need to make a appropriate decision.
Most managers, especially at the middle tier (Director level) are very risk adverse.  A senior Executive level supporter is required to assist with the approval to release data.  However, as above, the level or real risk is dependant on the specific data being considered for release. Privacy issues are one key barrier, but there are also other legitimate reasons why data cannot be released.  Having said that, DHS is likely to have a number of internal guidelines and channels to use to get data into the pubic domain.  The ‘employee’ in question needs to go further up the chain….
I am not sure if this helps, but just anther perspective.
Ben Searle

On 14 May 2015, at 7:43 am, Pia Waugh <pia.waugh at gmail.com> wrote:Hi Rosie,This is exactly why govhack is run by volunteers :) Basically people can make projects that criticise the government, but don't tend to. Often we get projects that use data such as budget data to better understand how government spends money. Some departments are mote sensitive to external interpretations than others but we have around 15 federal agencies involved, 5 state and territory governments and several councils. So they are managing the risk just fine. There are no privacy risks because we only work with open data. There we always risks and it is up to the department to mange their own risks, but the risks are low. By supporting and participating in govhack, government agencies aren't endorsing the outcomes and they get to choose who win specific gov supported prizes. But there are non government supported prizes too.In summary, there are always risks in doing public engagement and community activities. But the benefits have far outweighed the risks for many government supporters because the cost of innovation is so high through traditional gov means, and govhack provides a friendly, large and collaborative environment that brings community, gov and industry together for the common good.Hope that helps,

On 13/05/2015 5:41 PM, "Lachlan Musicman" <datakid at gmail.com> wrote:
Hi All,

One of the GovHack/Code for Australia Fellows has been in communication with a state employee from the Department of Health and Human Services (Tobacco Unit) indirectly as a result of her work within the council.

They seem to be interested in participating in GovHack but have asked her the following questions.
I am not really the right person to answer these questions. I don't want to ask "do we have canned responses" but I presume these are regular questions that people can answer more eloquently than I. Pia?

Is it possible you could identify any risks and how they are mitigated?
Is there a risk the data could be misused in anyway or potentially criticise the Department or government?

Is there a risk the submissions
 such as applications or websites could be used to criticise the 
Department or current government.

Are there any privacy risks?


let's build quiet armies friends, let's march on their glass towers...let's build fallen cathedrals and make impractical plans



okfn-au mailing list

okfn-au at lists.okfn.org


Unsubscribe: https://lists.okfn.org/mailman/options/okfn-au

okfn-au mailing list
okfn-au at lists.okfn.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.okfn.org/mailman/options/okfn-au

okfn-au mailing list
okfn-au at lists.okfn.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.okfn.org/mailman/options/okfn-au 		 	   		  
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.okfn.org/pipermail/okfn-au/attachments/20150514/93810653/attachment-0004.html>

More information about the okfn-au mailing list