Guide “Open Data Analysis – Making Better Decisions”
The effects of public administration are often difficult to capture in figures. However, an evidence-based approach calls for clearer accounts of administrative action. The systematic provision of open data enables better and, above all, automatable presentations and is thus an essential component of the digital transformation of the public sector. The conscious handling of open data and its reuse enables an analysis of value creation through data.
On the one hand, the availability of open data is a measure of how open an administration is to its citizens. However, the existence of electronic information and its analysis also allows the public administration to draw valuable and detailed conclusions about its further use and demand, both within the administration and on the part of the public.
The digitization of processes and documents allows a better overview of own optimization possibilities and the potential increase of the general user satisfaction. Herewith, some instruments and procedures for the analysis and measurability of Open Government Data are presented, the active use of which should enable even better administrative action.
The open data portal of the Austrian administration(data.gv.at/stats) offers a comprehensive web analysis and measurability tool with which the further use of open data can be made measurable or visualized. These statistics can be used freely and likewise to analyze the potential of your own data.
For example, the number of calls to specific data records and reuse scenarios can be displayed. These analytics can be used to identify data sets with the highest impact and demand. During the Corona crisis, for example, a significant increase in demand for health data was identified.
For data providers within the public administration, it makes sense to acquire a level of knowledge about which of one’s own data sets are reused by other public authorities or public companies. To increase efficiency, data providers are encouraged to implement such processes or regular analyses technically and organizationally, such as setting up their own monitoring processes (including their own data governance). Frequent information retrievals on websites, for example, can provide clues as to which (further) data might be relevant for publication.
- Open Data Governance – data.gv.at/governance
- Data.gv.at Statistics – Web Analysis (Matomo) – data.gv.at/stats
What processes have been implemented on their part? We always appreciate feedback on best practices of reuse analysis to email@example.com
The systematic availability of Open Data leads to sometimes significant time and cost savings for public administration and the public. For example, the proactive availability of open data saves administrative units from having to respond to numerous inquiries. Due to the immediate availability of relevant information, users save themselves the trouble of making inquiries to authorities. Efficient organizations strive to quantify these effects and analyze them for their own improvements.
An evidence-based approach in public administration is usually guided by so-called key performance indicators (KPIs). These arise, for example, from insights about how to maximize the impact and demand of data.
Across Europe, essential KPIs in the data area are considered to be, for example:
- the number of visitors,
- the number of downloads,
- the demand and frequency of use of open data
- The number of data providers using Open Data or
- the number of applications that have been created based on the use of the data.
cf. EDP Analytical Report n16, May 2020 (e.g. p. 22)
Open Data Best Practices Europe: Learning from Cyprus, France and Ireland
The statistics tool of the data portal of the Austrian administration (data.gv.at/stats) allows for more detailed presentations of key performance indicators (KPI). This facilitates more detailed analysis and enables real-time measurability of data reuse. Likewise, user behavior can be better derived from these statistics.
When it comes to measurement data, it is important to keep in mind that app developers often create copies of the data sets for the users of their applications. Since these accesses to third-party apps and applications cannot be measured by data.gv.at, the actual usage figure will often be much higher than indicated in the statistics.
A more in-depth development of Austria-wide KPIs in the area of Open Data is being considered, but these can be defined in greater depth individually by each organization itself. Basically, it is suggested to set up own technical and qualitative analysis tools for a better clarification of the potential of own data, in order to thus collect a more target-oriented data demand.
We are always grateful for feedback on specially set up analysis tools and experiences at firstname.lastname@example.org
Regular analyses of the effects of Open Data support your own decision-making to increase the potential of Open Government Data. The economic and social benefits of open data result, among other things, from their implementation in applications or software solutions.
To measure the economic and societal benefits, the data portal of the Austrian administration (data.gv.at) is based on the number of applications created. From data.gv.at, therefore, an overview of the applications created from open data is made available in real time. The concretely created applications are also listed directly with the corresponding data records.
Developers are actively encouraged to announce their own applications or reuse purpose based on Open Data on data.gv.at.
- Data.gv.at – Applications/reuse – https://www.data.gv.at/en/applications/
- Form – Submit Application – https://www.data.gv.at/en/applications/submit-application/
Studies provide a comprehensive overview of the economic, social and environmental added value of using data. Organizations are encouraged to commission studies on data reuse.
Recent studies show that the value of open data (as a percentage of GDP) will increase in the coming years due to the rapid proliferation of new applications and better ways to repurpose data as a result of increased penetration of digital devices.
We are grateful for the announcement of studies on Open Data at email@example.com
In addition to the data-based evaluations, qualitative analyses together with the responsible data providers are essential. Here, the expected effects of opening data sets are discussed. This allows organizations to get a clearer picture of what impacts have occurred for the public and their own organization from making data available to the public, such as overall time and cost savings.
Measuring the reuse of data should likewise be done through community activation. This can be driven by the organization itself or by specific organizational units. A topic-oriented exchange is recommended. Regular dialogue with data re-users enables users to present the purposes for which data is used and organizations to identify necessary improvement needs.
In certain cases, this also results in mutual benefits for improving general administrative services, such as the development of nonprofit apps by communities.
Ideas or suggestions for improvement based on Open Data – we are always grateful for feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org
- European Data Portal. The Economic Impact of Open Data. Opportunities for value creation in Europe (26.01.2020)
- European Data Portal. Analytical Report n16. Open Data Best Practices In Europe: Learning From Cyprus, France, And Ireland. (19.05.2020)
- Austria – Data.gv.at – Web Analysis and Statistics (Matomo)
- France – Data.gouv.fr – Web Analysis and Statistics (Matomo)
- Ireland – Data.gov.ie – Website and usage metrics
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