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Commitment 9 progress report: September 2020

Open Government Partnership New Zealand National Action Plan 2018-2020

Progress report for: July – September 2020

Commitment 9 progress report: September 2020

Commitment 9: Increase visibility of government data stewardship practices

Lead agency: Stats NZ / Government Chief Data Steward

Objective: To increase the visibility of data practices for government-held data.

Ambition: New Zealanders will:

  • understand how government is managing, using, and protecting their data and be able to hold government to account.
  • have confidence and trust in the management and use of data that government holds on their behalf.

OGP values: Transparency, Accountability



Milestone 1

Develop and publish an overview of government’s data stewardship practices

Start/End dates: August 2018 to 30 November 2018

Progress: Completed

Milestone 2

Engage with citizens and government on the data stewardship overview to ensure it provides visibility of the right things and is addressing key needs

Start/End dates: 1 December 2018 to June 2021

Progress: Some delays

Milestone 3

Promote the data stewardship practices to government agencies and support them to implement good practice

Start/End dates: May 2019 – June 2021

Progress: Underway

Milestone 4

Engage with citizens and government to identify where effort should be focused to address gaps in government’s data stewardship practices

Start/End dates: 1 May 2019 to June 2021

Progress: Some delays

What we have been doing

  • The Data Stewardship Framework provides a structure and common language for organising and describing the different elements of effective data stewardship. The accompanying Data Stewardship Toolkit provides access to guidance, resources, and tools to help people and agencies to steward data effectively.
  • Consultation with government agencies revealed a diversity in data stewardship awareness, practices, and maturity across government. This became more evident during the COVID-19 pandemic when government organisations were seeking data to inform policies and responses. This diversity means it will take longer than anticipated to achieve our objective of consistent and transparent data stewardship practices across government.
  • Stats NZ is undertaking a review of the successes and barriers to data access and use across government during the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This review is analysing the successes and barriers encountered to identify what improvements could be made to build the resilience and transparency of the government data system. Early findings point to the need to lift workforce capability, improve data sourcing and access, and increase the transparency of decisions and practices data that informed decision making, and coordinate data-related activities of agencies (to avoid duplication).
  • Progress was made on the following initiatives in the last quarter. These initiatives will contribute to this commitment’s objective (and to the Data Stewardship Toolkit in due course).
    • A Data Capability Framework is now available online. The framework is a tool designed to help define and develop data & analytical capabilities.
    • The algorithm charter for Aotearoa New Zealand was published in July 2020 and there are currently 26 government signatories who have committed to applying the values of the charter in their work. (See Commitment 8.)
    • A data and digital community of practice is being established to facilitate sharing information, experience and practice in relation to data and digital standards related matters. The community of practice will also promote and champion good data and digital standards practices across government agencies.

How we are including diverse voices

  • We will be developing an engagement strategy to:
    • promote new data stewardship resources
    • seek feedback on the stewardship resources we develop (or are thinking of developing)
    • provide appropriate channels for contributing suggestions and voicing concerns.
    • ensure we close the loop on feedback received, either by responding directly or by publishing key findings and insights from the feedback.

How we are keeping diverse communities informed

  • Publish the findings from Stats NZ’s review on the access and use of data in the COVID-19 response.

What's next?

  • Publish the Data Capability Framework.

Links – Evidence of progress and milestones achieved