Creating a human-centric government data request process

Product owner, Georgie Cameron discusses the design of the new government data request platform Dataplace.

Dataplace is a future whole-of-government data request platform that entities can use to engage with Australian Government departments and agencies to request and share government data.

ONDC has spent the last few months designing Dataplace, which has adopted an Agile project methodology and human-centred design approach.

Dataplace product owner and project lead, Georgie Cameron, is no stranger to human-centred design.

Since starting her career in 2012, Georgie has always sat at the intersection of human-centred design and digital. 

“I started my career in digital production in the advertising sector, where I learnt how much you can improve your business outcomes and the quality of your products and services just by talking to your users,” Georgie said.

Georgie then contributed her passion for human-centred design and her digital nous to the design of the Consumer Data Right, an experience which has informed her and the Dataplace project team’s approach to the platform.

“The saying ‘You don’t know what you don’t know’ is why human-centred design exists,” Georgie says.

“Human-centred design is a fantastic way to ensure you’re creating valuable, outcomes-driven services, and reducing the risk of getting it wrong.”

“ONDC has a lot of existing intelligence about government data sharing at our fingertips, but we also have gaps that we need to fill.”

The project team started filling these gaps by analysing and consolidating what they knew about the barriers and challenges to government data sharing.

This was followed by interviews and workshops with users from across sectors to explore these problems in more detail and understand how Dataplace can assist.

The results have been insightful.

“There’s a lot of complex work that occurs so that people can complete a data sharing agreement.”

“This process, which we refer to as the request-to-agreement process, is ultimately about collaboration and brokering between data custodians and data requesters.”

“This is where we want Dataplace to help: we want Dataplace to help users get from A to B in the data request-to-agreement process as efficiently and effectively as possible.”

The project team have taken their learnings and developed prototypes of potential Dataplace functionality that they have tested with over 100 users from organisations such as:

  • the Australian Bureau of Statistics
  • the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
  • the Australian National University
  • the Australian Taxation Office
  • NSW Government
  • QLD Government
  • Vic Government
  • Services Australia
  • the Public Health Research Network
  • the SURE Institute
  • the University of New South Wales.

The feedback on these prototypes will be used to define minimum requirements for the Dataplace platform that the project team can use to start planning the staged releases of Dataplace.

The project team is working towards a Beta release before the end of 2021, and then a foundational release in the first quarter of 2022.

“The scope for our first release in 2022 is to provide a service that data custodians and requesters can use to meet their obligations under the Data Availability and Transparency Bill and the new data sharing scheme,” Georgie said.

“We’ll then keep refining and adding to Dataplace over the next 3 years.”

If you or your organisation wants to get involved in the design of Dataplace, register for one or more of the ONDC’s Special Interest Groups:

Data Sharing

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