National Data Commissioner Update - February 2023

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National Data Commissioner Update - February 2023

Welcome to my first update for 2023!  

Get accredited so you can make a request for Australian Government data 

I am encouraged by the interest we are seeing in the DATA Scheme. Many government agencies and universities have started or are planning applications for accreditation. Once accredited as a data user, entities can make a request for Australian Government data. Accreditation serves as a gateway into the DATA Scheme, and ensures users are capable of the safe handling of public sector data. Start your accreditation process today

Get registered on Dataplace to make and manage your data requests 

Dataplace is the digital platform ONDC is building for DATA Scheme participants and others to request data. We are progressively rolling out the services available on Dataplace. 

The services released so far enable organisations to on-board (or register to use) Dataplace, apply for accreditation as a user and data service provider as well as make a request for data and collaborate on a data sharing agreement. We hit a big milestone this month with the release of a service that will automatically generate a general data sharing agreement (that is, for sharing occurring outside the DATA Scheme) for data users and data custodians. Additional services will be rolled out through 2023. 

Coming in 2023 on Dataplace 

More than 40 organisations have commenced on-boarding to Dataplace.  If your organisation is not one of those organisations, I encourage you to get on-board!  You can do this by contacting us through the ONDC website, through the Dataplace contact forms or by sending us an email. We will soon be publishing dates for Dataplace information sessions.  

New appointments to the National Data Advisory Council 

I am delighted to let you know about new appointments to the National Data Advisory Council - Rod Sims AO as Chair as well as Dr Kalinda Griffiths, Professor Greg Kaplan and Dr Kendra Vant. They join Paul McCarney, Dr Joshua Meltzer and Professor Sallie Pearson, whose terms have been extended, as well as ex-officio members Dr Cathy Foley, Australia’s Chief Scientist, Angelene Falk, the Australian Information Commissioner and Privacy Commissioner, and Dr David Gruen, the Australian Statistician. Their advice is key to ensuring the proper functioning of the DATA Scheme. My thanks to the outgoing members - Dr Ellen Broad, Professor Nicholas Biddle and Lauren Solomon - for their valuable guidance in developing and standing up the Scheme. You can find information about the Council on our website

Sharing data safely to deliver public benefit 

Take a look at this research by the Australian National University Centre for Public Health Data and Policy on socioeconomic demographics and lessons from the COVID-19 vaccines strategy. It’s a great example of how Australian Government data – in this case data from the Australian Immunisation Register and the Multi-Agency Data Integration Project – has been shared safely with the university sector and used to inform the delivery of better government services. As the COVID-19 vaccination was being rolled out, researchers found differences in COVID vaccination levels depending on where people lived, their employment and the main language spoken at home. These findings led to better targeted communications and in turn higher vaccine uptake.  

Good reads 

There’s been important developments on cyber security. A new national cyber office, led by a new ‘Coordinator for Cyber Security,’ will be established to lead emergency responses to cyber attacks across Australia. This new office will be set up in the Department of Home Affairs. Check out the 2023-2030 Australian Cyber Security Strategy - Discussion Paper released on Monday. 

The Data and Digital Ministers met on 24 February. They focussed on modernising Australia’s ID system, the audit into the myGov digital platform, the draft National Strategy for Identity Resilience and ways to share data to support the National Plan to End Violence against Women and Children 2022–2032. You can read their communique here. 

Applications for APS Data Awards close 3 March 

Finally, it’s time to recognise excellence! Nominate an outstanding data achievement for an APS Data Award. The awards are a celebration of achievement across the data landscape, highlighting innovative and resourceful solutions which use data to make a difference to the Australian community. You can submit your completed nomination form by emailing it to the APS Data Awards team at by COB 3 March 2023.