Saint Lucia Open Data Policy

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This is the Saint Lucia Open Data Policy, originally published on 4 December 2017. (A printable PDF version is available on the Government web site ).


1. Executive Summary
2. Introduction
3. Aims, Objectives and Priorities
4. Policy Principles for Open Data
5. The Open Data Programme of Saint Lucia
6. Technical Principles
7. Roles and Responsibilities
8. Measurement and Policy Review
Annex. Some Digital Data Already in the Public Domain

1 Executive Summary

In 2014, Saint Lucia became the first country in the Caribbean to participate in an Open Data Readiness Assessment (ODRA) as part of a World Bank Programme of assistance in the Caribbean. This occurred within the context of a global open data movement; particularly open data initiatives within government. The ODRA found that Saint Lucia had the pre-existing institutional structure to support a successful open data initiative which includes the availability of public datasets in electronic and the necessary ICT support. Since then, efforts have been focused on the development of and collaboration continues with World Bank towards a robust and well-populated portal.

Open data proponents encourage the proactive release of data; with an international standard of “open by default”. Meaning, if data is already being made available in the public domain, there is no reason it should not be made “open” – easy to reuse with no costs, counters, lengthy request processes, special access rights etc. associated with access to data. A case must be made to justify any restrictions to open access to data by the respective agency.

Currently, data which is shared in the public domain are done so in various formats, quite often in formats which restrict the re-use and/or access to data. In many instances, data which is in the public domain is only available upon request; making it difficult for the public, external agencies and even other governmental agencies to access data which is held by government. This also means that quite often it is difficult for users to determine what data is held by which agencies. On the part of the agencies that hold the data, the additional workload of responding to individual data requests is burdensome. Open data means that data is instead proactively placed on an open data portal and there is one location where data is made available from government.

This policy articulates the framework within which Saint Lucia implementation of an effective open data programme. This involves a cross-government policy on sharing of data in the public domain and the promotion of Open data throughout all sectors. Further, it outlines the plan to populate a robust National Open data portal with data which is already collected and held within government agencies; and to promote the proper use of open data throughout all sectors.

2 Introduction

Open data is digital data that is made available with the technical and legal characteristics necessary for it to be freely used, reused, and redistributed by anyone, anytime, anywhere.

The open data movement is based on the idea that some data should be made open; particularly that which is already in the public domain and is of high value to many users. This movement has gained much momentum in this decade; particularly as governments around the world have introduced open data programs. Existing technology allows for the publication of datasets at little or no additional cost to the government and in a manner which ensures that the use by one person does not affect another’s use. That is, users can access and download datasets in a format that allows them to easily use it for research, analysis, citizen services, disaster management, forecasting, and entrepreneurship; among others.
There has been a wealth of benefits identified from open data programs. From the economic perspective, open data has led to increases in entrepreneurial activities which rely on data; such as application development in the ICT sector, data analysis for business consultancies and research firms. Open data has also been known to stimulate foreign investment and create new opportunities for sustainable economic development. Open data has been linked to the development of mobile applications means job creation. In the United States, development of mobile applications alone has created 500,000 new jobs over the last 5 years.

From the perspective of governance, open data is the epitome of transparency and government effectiveness. The easy access to data by agencies responsible for planning and social policy leads to increased efficiency. The improved access to data also leads to improved efficiency of public sector as agencies can now easily access all of the data necessary for analysis, planning enhanced public services to the private sector and individual citizens.

2.1 Background

Following the Open Data Readiness Assessment (ODRA) of 2014, a report was produced which identified Saint Lucia as a country which could execute a very successful Open Data movement given the large number of data sets which are already in the public domain but are published in restrictive formats. See Annex 1 for a list of some of the datasets already in public domain.

In keeping with the recommendations of the ODRA, the Division of Public Sector Modernisation (DPSM) has been the lead agency for Saint Lucia’s open data programme. Since the ODRA, the DPSM, has soft-launched an Open Data portal at in February 2015. Open data was hosted on a temporary portal while preparations were made to commission a robust portal.

There has also been on-going collaboration with the World Bank Open Data team and the Division of Public Sector Modernization (DPSM) in engaging data owners and preparing data for the National Portal. The Open Data Readiness Assessment (ODRA) identified some datasets as “quick wins.” These are datasets which are already in digital format and are already in the public domain. These include financial information, core reference information such as maps, company register and weather, census and statistical information, education information, tourism information and other “high value” datasets. Annex 1 is a table detailing some of the datasets in the public domain which are already held in digital format. High value datasets are datasets which are in great demand and/or are of great importance to a high number of data users. So far, all of the agencies who were identified in the ODRA as holding in electronic format, high value and public domain datasets have been invited to share their data on the portal. Line agencies have been cooperating with DPSM in populating of the new, more robust portal.

As preparations are made for the launch of the newly completed portal funded by, and with the technical support from, the World Bank, the need has been identified to properly articulate the necessary government policy on Open data. The policy review and development process began in 2015 with the initial draft which was reviewed taking into consideration feedback from the World Bank Consultant on Open Data and Digital Economy. The policy was again reviewed to take into consideration the International Open Data Charter which was released in September 2015.

Further consultation took the form of the Open Data Workshop held on December 04, 2015.The workshop was organized by the Division of Public Sector Modernization and facilitated by World Bank Consultant on Open Data and Digital Economy. An invitation was extended to senior representatives from all government agencies. The workshop consisted of a round table of senior and mid-level personnel from across government. Those in attendance were:

  • Budget Director, Department of Finance, Ministry of Finance, Economic Affairs, Planning and Social Security.
  • Director of Legislative Drafting, Attorney General’s Chambers
  • Statistician II, Central Statistics Office
  • Information Technology Manager, Ministry of Infrastructure, Port Services and Transport
  • Tourism Officer, Ministry of Tourism, Heritage and Creative Industries
  • Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Physical Development, Housing and Urban Renewal
  • Information Technology Manager, Ministry of Education, Human Resource Development and Labour
  • Information Systems Manager, Ministry of Health, Wellness, Human Services and Gender Relations
  • Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Food Production, Fisheries, Cooperatives and Rural Development
  • Senior Information Analyst, Ministry of Public Service, Information and Broadcasting
  • Research Officer, Ministry of Public Service, Information and Broadcasting

Following this, the policy was sent to the Attorney General for review and this part of the consultation process was finalised in October 2016.

2.2 Purpose of the Policy

The Open Data Policy of Saint Lucia details one consistent approach to the sharing of data held by all agencies of government; this includes the administrative framework and procedural guidelines. Further, it shall represent the government of Saint Lucia’s position on how data in the public domain should be treated; that is, all government-owned data which does not contain personal information, and does not create any threat to national security; should be made freely available in and easily reusable format by default.

3 Aims, Objectives and Priorities

3.1 Aims and Objectives

The policy aims to provide a cross-government approach to sharing the data held within its various agencies, as well as a commitment to encouraging and supporting open data in all sectors. The specific objectives of the Saint Lucia Open data policy are as follows:

3.1.1 Stimulate Economic Growth and Business Innovation

Making useful data more accessible will enable existing businesses and entrepreneurs to develop better and more innovative services for citizens, businesses, visitors and investors. It will also create opportunities for innovators and entrepreneurs to build new businesses which turn the data into valuable services. Thus, it will support the efforts to decrease the unemployment rate as it will create economic opportunities for citizens. Open Data will serve as raw material, particularly for ICT innovation initiatives and start-up incubators.

3.1.2 Facilitate Greater Transparency

Open Data is an important component to improve and sustain good governance based on integrity, transparency and accountability. It allows for public participation and citizen engagement as the open data portal will serve as a new platform for citizens to be able to view government data, as well as send comments and receive feedback from Government regarding the various datasets made available.

3.1.3 Increase Government efficiency and effectiveness

Making government data open will make it accessible and re-usable within Government itself. This will encourage collaboration across agency boundaries; reduce the costs, delays and bureaucracy typically associated with obtaining the data needed for decisions; enable data producers to concentrate on improving data quality rather than serving requests for data from other parts of government; and lead to better use of data analytics to improve decision-making at all levels.

3.1.4 Improve public Services provided to citizens

Open Data will contribute to improvements and efficiency in vital public services, through a wider appreciation of issues, greater citizen and business engagement, and a greater quality of dialogue between citizens and those responsible for delivering change. This ability to make informed assessments will in turn produce the quality of feedback necessary to effectively target areas for improvement in public services.

3.2 Priorities

The priorities under the Open Data policy are as follows:

  • The release “high value” datasets relevant for engaging people in and monitoring progress of, key government initiatives.
  • The release of “high value datasets” necessary for evidence-based decision-making and related to the country’s priority economic sectors.
  • The release of datasets from key data producers of data and from agencies centrally involved in coordinating and mainstreaming data. They will build up capability and experience by applying the policy to themselves, and steadily releasing more of their own data.
  • The release “core reference data”, particularly geospatial data, which is important for visualizing and analysing other data, and which will promote standardization across government and beyond.
  • The commitment to responding positively to requests for other datasets held by the Government, and working with the relevant Ministries to do so.

4 Policy Principles for Open Data

The policy principles for Open Data will include:

(1) The data held by public bodies, and by private companies on behalf of public bodies or in order to provide public services, are public assets held by the Government on behalf of the people.

(2) The value of data as a public asset must be maximised; with access that ensures that one use of the data does not preclude another use of the data.

(3) Data will, by default, be open, subject to strictly controlled exceptions. The main exceptions are national security, personal privacy and legally required confidentiality, but each exception will only apply to the extent strictly necessary.

(4) Data will be made available proactively without waiting for specific requests, although the Government will also respond as positively as possible to requests for additional data.

(5) Data will be available at no more than the marginal cost of distributing it - which, for distribution over the internet, will be free of charge.

(6) Data will be made available in open, re-usable, machine-readable, formats.

(7) Data will be available to be re-usable for any lawful purpose, commercial or non-commercial; the Government will not require users of its data to identify themselves or place any similar restriction on users.

(8) Any data accessible on the Government’s websites will also be available for download in reusable form.

(9) In addition to releasing its own data, the Government will encourage and facilitate the release of data by other levels of government, by the private sector and by civil society organisations.

(10) The Government will actively encourage, promote and nurture the use of its Open Data.

(11) The Government will work with businesses and civil society organisations to ensure that Open Data is used to give the maximum benefit to citizens, businesses, visitors and investors.

(12) The Government will use Open Data to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of government itself.

5 The Open Data Programme of Saint Lucia

5.1 Open by Default

The data of the Government will be “Open by Default” - that is that it is expected that every government dataset will be published as Open Data unless there are sound privacy, national security or other confidentiality considerations why the data should not be published. Non-publication would be the exception.
This means that:

  • data will be published as Open Data proactively - the Government will take the initiative to publish, and will not just respond to requests.
  • specific justification or a business case will not be required to publish a dataset - the specific justification will instead be required not to publish a dataset
  • the Government will not judge whether or how the data might be used in deciding whether to publish data, or whether there is a “good reason” to do so. When and how the data is used is primarily a matter for the users of the data, not the Government.

5.2 Privacy, National Security and other confidentiality considerations

5.2.1 General principles

The Open Data policy will not release items of data, which disclosure would be detrimental to national security or to personal privacy, which is held under an obligation of confidentiality, or which is otherwise prohibited from disclosure under law.
The central team, in consultation with the relevant authorities, will develop detailed guidance to individual agencies on the application of each of these exceptions. This guidance will include:

  • the criteria to be used
  • the processes to be followed
  • responsibilities for making the determination
  • additional bodies to be consulted

These exceptions to the Open By Default principle will be strictly controlled. It will not be acceptable just to deem the information “confidential”: any Ministry proposing to withhold data on this basis will be required to justify it, and to send the proposal for review by the Open Data team and the relevant authorities. The decisions will be reviewed and renewed regularly.

5.2.2 Personal data

Data which relates to identifiable individuals is personal data. Personal data will not be published as Open Data.
If a dataset containing personal data can be “anonymized” or aggregated to the extent that it cannot be used to identify the individual that it relates to, then it can be released as Open Data in that form.

Anonymization is not always a straightforward process. Specialist skills in assessing and managing its risks, and applying the necessary standard of anonymization, will be developed centrally within the Government. Individual agencies must receive approval of their anonymization methodologies with this central capability.

Decisions whether or not such data can be categorised as open data will be subject to the relevant legislation, and review by the central team, in consultation with the relevant authorities.

5.2.3 Commercial data

Some of data held by the Government is about companies rather than about individuals. The central team will develop detailed guidance in order to have consistency in treatment of commercial information across government, based on the following principles:

  • in taking decisions about whether data should be published, the agency will take account of the public interest in disclosure as well as the commercial interest in confidentiality
  • information supplied to the government under legal obligations of confidentiality will not be published in a way which would allow data about individual companies to be published
  • trade secrets and other valuable intellectual property will be protected
  • data gathered through inspections or other regulatory actions may be published in the public interest, despite the fact that publication might put the company concerned at a commercial disadvantage (for example, public health and food hygiene inspections).
  • the Government will honour existing contractual obligations for confidentiality

5.2.4 Fine-grained data

Subject to the requirements of personal privacy, data will be released at the most detailed level possible - including geographical location and dates of individual events where relevant. This will allow users to analyse the data in any way that they need; where relevant, aggregated data (for instance statistical tables) may also be released.

5.3 Data Quality

The fact that an existing dataset is known to be not wholly accurate or complete will not prevent it being released “as is” as Open Data.
In opening data:

  • the Government will accept no liability for inaccuracies in the data or the use to which the data is put
  • the Government will share any information it has about known inaccuracies in the dataset
  • the Government will indicate to data users how they can contribute corrections to the data or otherwise help the Government improve the quality of its data
  • the Government will facilitate the sharing of information about the dataset’s quality between users and with the government
  • the Government will publish the metadata associated with each data set

Financial and other relevant datasets released as Open Data will not necessarily have had to be audited. Unaudited data will be released where appropriate. The audit status of each dataset will be made clear.

5.4 Release of Data

The Government will publish a data release plan for the key datasets to be published, and the Ministries responsible for publishing them, and will regularly update this plan.
Data will be released as quickly as possible after it is collected. Where appropriate, data will be updated regularly. Earlier copies of datasets will be archived and kept accessible for as long as they retain value.

Where new statistical datasets are being produced, or where statistical datasets are being updated, it will be acceptable for publication of the data to be delayed until agreed quality review has taken place, provided that the steps in the process and the timescale for performing them are made public.

The Government will alert users, through the Open Data portal and through email lists, when updated data is available.

5.4.1 Requests for data

In taking decisions about which datasets to prioritise for release, the Government will take into account feedback and requests for specific datasets or for data on specific problems from citizens and businesses.

For requests done via the internet, the Open Data portal will include a feedback facility to allow that input to be gathered.
Requests for open data made via telephone will be directed to the agency coordinating the Open data programme and Chairing the Central team. These requests will be documented.

Where appropriate, Ministries will publish data about the datasets they hold and whether each has yet been released as Open Data. This will enable requests to be made, and the release program prioritized accordingly.

5.5 Charging

5.5.1 No charges for data accessed electronically

The Open Data made available electronically is free of charge. This is a key principle of Open Data, because the use of the data, and so the value of it to the country, will be maximized when it is available at no more than the marginal cost of distribution, and that for data downloaded over the internet the marginal cost of distribution is effectively zero (or too low to make cost recovery worthwhile). No charges will be permitted for the costs of collecting, maintaining, updating or distributing electronically data gathered by agency as part of their regular public tasks.
Ministries will not charge users to download data or access it through an Application Program Interface (API).

The costs of collecting, curating, maintaining and updating the data are already public tasks of the relevant agency covered by their budget or by other sources of income; these costs will not be recovered through charges for data.

There will be a program to review individual agency’s charges to ensure that they reflect the overall policy that the data will be free of charge. In most cases there is not significant net revenue from charging for data, so there will not be significant budgetary consequences of making the data itself free.

5.5.2 Paper Publications

Ministries may still charge for paper publications containing data - because the marginal cost of distribution is not zero. In cases where the published documents are an important source of revenue, agencies may opt to delay the release of the data contained in the said document as open data.

5.5.3 Value-added services

Where the underlying data is available electronically free of charge, charges may nevertheless be made for additional services, such advice not available to the general public.

Charges for genuinely value-added services will be permitted but limited to recovering the specific extra costs of providing the specific additional service beyond the public tasks of the agency.

5.6 Copyright, licensing and intellectual property

Under the Open Data policy, there is a consistent approach regarding the rights of data-users and other terms related to the availability and use of open data as detailed below. This approach has the added benefit of allowing information from different sources to be easily combined and to be freely reused.

5.6.1 Single set of terms and conditions

There will be a single set of terms and conditions of the use of open data released by the Government. These terms and conditions will be applied to all open data irrespective of which agency has custody of the data. The Department of Public Service will select the license used and keep it under review as necessary.

5.6.2 Requirements for the terms and conditions

These terms and conditions will:

  • comply with the Open Definition so that the data is unequivocally recognized internationally as Open Data. Which, in summary states that “Knowledge is open if anyone is free to access, use, modify, and share it — subject, at most, to measures that preserve provenance and openness.”
  • allow free reuse of the data for any purpose
  • require an acknowledgement that data from the Government is being used
  • prohibit any user of the data claiming that their use of the data is endorsed by the Government
  • exclude any liability on the Government for inaccuracy or consequential losses as a result of the use of the data.

5.6.3 Exemptions from the Open License

The Open License will not apply to any published personal data in a dataset, because use of such personal data will still be subject to any existing legislation which relates to an individual’s right to privacy and to the protection of personal data.

The Open License will not apply to any items of data, for which disclosure would be detrimental to national security, or which is held under an obligation of confidentiality, or which is otherwise prohibited from disclosure under law.

The Open License will not apply to the insignia of Saint Lucia or its institutions, except as an integral part of a dataset.

The Open License will not apply to data belonging to third parties that the Government of Saint Lucia does not have the right to redistribute.

5.6.4 Attribution

Under the terms of the selected license, the Government of Saint Lucia requires an attribution statement to accompany any use of the data. Two standard attribution statements will be used:

(a) if the data has been used unchanged:

“Uses Government of Saint Lucia data from”

(b) if the data has been adapted or changed:

“Adapted from Government of Saint Lucia data on”

5.7 Legislation

Given that the Open Data policy deals specifically with data already in the public domain, there are no legislative implications or changes necessary for the Open Data policy.

5.8 Promoting Open Data

The Government will actively encourage, promote and nurture the use of its Open Data. It will work with businesses, civil society organisations, schools and academic institutions, international organisations and donors and others to ensure that Open Data is used to give the maximum benefit to citizens, businesses, visitors and investors. The Government will also promote the use of Open Data to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of government itself.

The Government will work with domestic and international partners to actively support the development of an “Open Data Ecosystem” of skills, services and knowledge to support the delivery of value from Open Data. This will include:

  • ensuring that Ministries give support and assistance to those trying to use their data
  • community-building, including working with civil society organisations, schools and academic institutions, business bodies and others to build relationship between the different specialist services needed to build compelling applications using Open Data.
  • promoting the sharing of documentation and developer toolkits for Open Data, including data organisations and visualization tools.
  • connecting to existing global and regional ecosystems and establishing local branches of relevant networks.
  • leveraging expertise and enthusiasm on the use of data from within government

5.8.1 Promoting Open Data within Government

The central team will promote the use of Open Data within the Government and in public bodies at sub-national level. This promotion will include:

  • awareness of Open Data and the national portal
  • skills development
  • communication and sharing of good practice

5.8.2 Promoting Open Data With Parastatal Agencies

The Government will promote the publication of data from all parastatals including state-owned enterprises, statutory bodies, and local councils. Where the Government itself publishes financial and other data in the interests of transparency and accountability it will expect the same level of transparency from local governments.

5.8.3 Promoting Open Data outside Government

The Government will encourage the private sector, civil society organisations and donors to open their data as well. This will be particularly valuable where their data can be combined with Open Data released by the Government to create additional value. The detailed guidance on the publication of Open Data within the Government will be available for others to use for their own Open Data initiatives.

6 Technical Principles

6.1 Formats

Datasets published as part of the Open Data initiative will conform to a minimum set of technical standards aimed at ensuring that the data is reusable. These will include:

  • Data will be published in open, machine-readable, formats.
  • Data will not be published exclusively as PDFs if the underlying data is available in machine-readable form; instead the machine-readable form will itself be published. The PDF form may also be published if appropriate. (Exceptionally historical data may be published as PDFs if the original machine-readable files cannot be located.)
  • APIs will be REST-ful and accessible over HTTP.
  • Data downloads and API access will be anonymous and will not require authentication. Exceptionally, API keys may be used to manage excessive use of API interfaces, but they will be freely granted.
  • data will be published at the lowest level of disaggregation possible, and will usually be the same data as is actually used within government (rather than an additional, specially produced dataset)
  • data available through APIs will also be available to download in bulk
  • data available through “table builders” will be available programmatically through an API. Table-builders will supply a unique, permanent, reference to each table so that the table can later be downloaded programmatically, including any new data which has become available in the meantime.
  • Geospatial coding will be compatible with OpenGIS standards.
  • Standard codes, such as codes for administrative bodies and for standard classifications of goods and services as approved by the Central Statistics Office, will be used where appropriate, to allow different datasets to be linked.
  • All data will be supplied with its associated metadata - including both general metadata (example about provenance and scope) and any additional metadata appropriate to that class of data.
  • Publishing of individual datasets without fully conforming to the necessary technical standards may be permitted where the early availability of the dataset in non-compliant form would nevertheless be valuable to application developers. However, any deviation from the standards must be explained to and agreed upon by the Central team. Deviation from standards must be the minimum necessary to release the data as soon as possible, and there must be an agreed trajectory to conform to standards by a set date in the future.

6.2 Portal policy

6.2.1 A single, authoritative, Open Data portal for government

There will be a single, authoritative, Open Data portal for the Government. This will give data users a “one stop shop” for all the Open Data from the Government, and so make it quick and easy to find the data that they need. All Open Data from the Government will be findable through this portal, even if the data itself is not held there.
Accordingly, individual Ministries should not need to develop their own Open Data portals and will not do so. The focus of individual Ministries is the release of their data, providing it and its metadata to the national portal in open formats, and working with the users of its data.

6.2.2 Hosting of data

Datasets, as well as their metadata, will be held in a data repository within the national Open Data portal, and the portal will have the necessary functionality to support this. This will allow, through generic functionality of the portal, such datasets to be served both as downloads and through an API; and allow datasets to be browsed and visualized in a standard way.

Exceptionally, agencies will be able to host specific datasets from their data on their own servers, and supply relevant metadata and links to the national portal. However, this facility will only be allowed in exceptional circumstances:

  • the agency will need to demonstrate to the central team that they have the necessary skills, experience and management processes to host their own data and supply metadata to the national portal.
  • the agency must make their data available in Open formats
  • the agency must provide similar functionality to the central portal to browse, analyse and visualize datasets which it hosts, in a meaningful way for the particular dataset involved.
  • the exception will apply at a dataset level; it does not mean that agency can publish all its data itself.
  • this exception will only be allowed for large, complex, datasets where a special API is needed to access the data. This might include the databases used to drive the public dashboards for key government initiatives.
  • this exception will not be allowed for simple, flat tables and spreadsheets; these will all be loaded into the repository of the national portal.
  • other requirements of the Open Data policy, including licensing, must apply to data published outside the national portal as they would to data published on the national portal itself.

7 Roles and Responsibilities

7.1 Central Team

The central team consists of core agencies with a mandate to ensure that the necessary information technology and data structures are in place to ensure a well-functioning, properly used open data portal. The administering agency will Chair this central team and coordinate all activities of the team.

7.1.1 Leading agencies

A central team will comprise representative(s) from the following agencies:

  • Division of Public Sector Modernisation under the Department of Public Service
  • Central Statistics Office under the Ministry of Finance.
  • Department of Finance, Ministry of Finance
  • Government Information Services
  • Selected Line agencies with large, high value datasets

7.1.2 Responsibilities of the Central Team

The main permanent responsibilities of the Central Team will include:

  • overall responsibility for Open Data policy
  • communication about, and promotion of, the Open Data programme, inside and outside government, and both nationally and internationally
  • producing detailed guidance to Department on Open Data implementation
  • setting business and technical standards for Open Data
  • overall program definition and program management
  • implementation strategy and prioritization
  • establishing skill development programs inside and outside government
  • challenge decisions by individual Ministry not to release key datasets
  • ensure requests for data are being properly considered by the relevant Ministry, and work with the Ministries to see how a positive response can be made to the request (even if all the requested data cannot be released)
  • Supporting and incubating the use of Open Data and the wider Open Data “ecosystem”, including the sponsoring of events, developer days, competitions, business incubation and close collaboration between Government and the users of its data.
  • development and operation of the Open Data portal
  • establishing and enforcing standards for metadata associated to datasets in the open data portal
  • helping with data release decisions and preparations, including privacy and security assessments, anonymization and other necessary work
  • Working “hands on” with individual Ministries to address risks and blockers with their senior managements and with their stakeholders.
  • monitoring, measurement and reporting of achievement against plan

7.1.3 Central Statistics Office

  • The Central Statistics Office shall support both the Central team and other agencies of government in their execution of the responsibilities they hold under the open data policy.
  • The Central Statistics Office shall provide expertise in data anonymization to Central team in reviewing anonymized datasets before they are placed in the public domain.
  • The Central Statistics Office shall upload to the Open Data Portal, in raw format, data already regularly made public by Central Statistics.

7.2 All Agencies of Government

The main, permanent responsibilities of agencies of government include:

  • The release of data to the portal as authorized by the respective Permanent Secretary; or agency head; or by someone whom the Permanent Secretary or agency head gives authority to do so.
  • Appointment of an “Open data Point Person” within their respective ministries who will act as a liaison with the Central team and ensure that the necessary data submissions from the agency are done.
  • Ensure that all agreed data submissions are done, (via the Open Data Point Person); and any issues or technical difficulties which may hinder data submission is reported to the Central team.
  • The submission of an inventory of all the Open data which has been shared; will be shared; and data held which is not part of the Open data policy.

8 Measurement and Policy Review

8.1 Measurement

The central team will develop a measurement and reporting framework for the Open Data programme, building on existing metrics such as the Open Data Barometer, the Open Data Census, the OECD proposed metrics and others.

Regular measurements will be made of the usage of the Open Data portal including initially:

  • number of visitors
  • number of datasets
  • number of downloads of datasets
  • number of Ministry contributing data to the portal
  • API usage
  • number of developers and others registered
  • amount of comment and other community activity
  • number of applications registered

8.2 Policy Review

This Open Data policy will be regularly reviewed in the light of experience and comments received from data users and others.

Annex 1: Some Digital Data Already in the Public Domain (According to the Open Data Readiness Assessment 2014)

  • Department of Finance: Government Budget, Expenditure, Revenue and Debt stocks data<
  • Department of Education: Educational Digest data
  • Department of Tourism: Unesco Heritage Data; Information for Tourists (activities, areas of interest, forest trails, restaurants, hotels, events, services etc); tourism businesses (occupancy, length of stay, arrivals etc)
  • Central Statistics Office: Census data, Labour Market Data, Economic and Social Indicators, trade data
  • Meteorology Unit: Digital data on weather observations from the 1970s; current forecasts and observations
  • Registry Of Companies and Intellectual Property: Company Basic Data
  • Department of Physical Development (Land Administration): Data from the Sling/Geonode system
  • Department of Infrastructure: Road condition and repair data
  • Department of Health: Disease statistics
  • Electoral Office: Electoral data
  • Department of Agriculture: Summary data of agricultural census; Datasets, which compile the agricultural digest; Livestock production (monthly); Fisheries overall estimates of fisheries landings and stocks (from 1995); fisherman and vessel registration (without names) (from 1995)
  • Royal Saint Lucia Police Force: Crime statistics