In a post on the Open Knowledge blog, @anab, @carlos_iglesias_moro, @dannylammerhirt and Stefaan Verhulst have reported the results of a workshop they convened at the Open Data Research Symposium 2018. The workshop group has assembled a model for open data governance composed from four layers:
- management layer
- legal and policy layer
- technical standards layer
- capacity layer
For this discussion on the ideal open data legislation, especially relevant are the questions the group has raised for the legal and policy layer.:
The interplay between legal and policy frameworks: Open data policies operate among other legal and policy frameworks, which can complement, enable, or limit the scope of open data. New frameworks such as GDPR, but also existing right to information and freedom of expression frameworks prompt the question of how the legal environment influences the behaviour and daily decision-making around open data. To address such questions, one could study the discourse and interplay between open data policies as well as tangential policies like smart city or digitalisation policies.
Implementation of law and policies: Furthermore, how are open data frameworks designed to guide the implementation open data? How do they address governmental devolution? Open data governance needs to stretch across all government levels to unlock data from all government levels. What approaches are experimented with to coordinate the implementation of policies across jurisdictions and government branches? To what agencies do open data policies apply, and how do they enable or constrain choices around open data? What agencies define and move forward open data, and how does this influence adoption and sustainability of open data initiatives?
Open governance of law and policy: Besides studying the interaction of privacy protection, right to information, and open data policies, how could open data benefit from policies enabling open governance and civic participation? Do governments develop more integrated strategies for open governance and open data, and if so, what policies and legal mechanisms are in place? If so, how do these laws and policies enable other aspects of open data governance, including more participatory management, more substantive and legally supported citizen participation?
My view is that these questions should enable some interesting discussions on what should be considered when drafting high level legislation on open data.
I didn’t mean to sound dismissive in my post las about the suggestions people made here last year. I most surely think that high level commitments such as the International Open Data Charter and technical standards such as the W3C DWBP have a place in government norms, just not at the top level legislation which is usually difficult to approve in a national congress and slow to change. That would be inadequate for the fast paced change that happen in both the political and technical landscapes. I surely think they do have a place at lower level legislation, such as a decree that depends only on the executive branch and can be changed faster and more easily.
Last but certainly not least, I have since learned that the Franch Parliament was considering a draft bill on Open Data legislation in 2016, titled l’ouverture des données d’intérêt général. However, I searched but could not find out whether or not this bill has since actually been enacted into law, or if it was rejected or still pending. Anyone who watches the French open data initiative more closely could tell me what became of it?