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1344.8.55.003 - ACT Information Development Plan, 2015  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 14/05/2015   
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THE ACT INFORMATION DEVELOPMENT PLAN

INTRODUCTION

The Information Development Plan (IDP) formalises an ongoing and effective relationship between the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and the ACT Government which is important to the Australian and ACT Governments as well as the community. Promotion of the effective use of data, including, but not limited to, data collected by the ABS and administrative data held by the ACT Government, results in better informed public policy formulation, implementation and evaluation.

This IDP recognises the important role that quality statistics play in informed decision making within governments, business and the community. High-quality data is necessary for the development and evaluation of government policy outcomes.

This IDP continues to build on the previous two ACT Information Development Plans1 and seeks to:

  • provide a high level strategic framework for improving the management and development of statistical resources for the ACT and directing priorities for the use of these resources;
  • strengthen the partnership that exists between the ACT government and the ABS for the development, management, and collection of data and provision of statistical information in the ACT; and
  • enhance the capability of ACT public service in the effective use of data for informed decision making and policy advice.
GOALS

Under this IDP an annual Implementation Plan will be developed to outline specific activities that the ABS and ACT Government will collaborate on to achieve the IDP goals.

Goal One

The benefits of high-quality information for the ACT are recognised and utilised, particularly, in the areas of:

  • policy development;
  • evaluation; and
  • ensuring appropriate funding arrangements.
Goal Two

Administrative data is collected and managed in a way that provides a statistical picture of the economy, society, environment and the business of governing the Territory.

Goal Three

Administrative data, as well as data from other relevant sources, is used to assist with

  • policy development;
  • evaluation;
  • ensuring appropriate funding arrangements; and
  • demonstrating the efficiency of government service delivery.
Goal Four

Statistical standards, policies and tools in the collection of administrative data, are used in order to maximise the usefulness of this data and its flexibility for use with other data sources.

Through delivery of the IDP Implementation Plan the ABS and ACT Government will work together, in conjunction with other partners, to achieve the above goals.

ALIGNMENT WITH NATIONAL STATISTICAL SERVICE GOALS

The high level goals of this IDP reflect, and are aligned with, the four goals of the National Statistical Service (NSS). The NSS goals recognise that high quality data (not just from the ABS, but from many sources - including from the ACT Government itself) is produced in an environment where:

  • data is valued;
  • there is a high level of statistical capability;
  • the right data is being collected to meet the needs of government and the community; and
  • statistics align with standards that allow meaningful comparisons with other jurisdictions.

In light of this alignment, this IDP also provides a framework to work in partnership in fulfilling the goals of the NSS, within an ACT context.

GOVERNANCE

This IDP recognises the strategic importance of the data that is collected by the ACT Government to the good management of the ACT and the nation. Implementation of this plan requires a high level governance to ensure that any resources dedicated to the collection, management and analysis of data are targeted to areas of most benefit to the ACT Government itself, as well as its responsibilities in contributing to national datasets. This is addressed and agreed through the annual IDP Implementation Plan process.

ABS role

The ABS will contribute to this IDP by developing frameworks and standards and collaborating with the ACT Government in the development, collection, co-ordination, application and dissemination of statistical information (whether from the ABS or other sources) about the ACT. The ABS will support the ACT Government in the collection and provision of high quality data.

ACT Government role

The ACT Government will contribute to this IDP through the collection of data derived from administrative records and other sources relating to their various policy areas and the management of the Territory, including a significant amount of data that is provided to the ABS and other partners to produce statistics about the ACT and the nation as a whole. The ACT Government will work with the ABS and other partners to maximise the quality of the data it collects both for its own use and to contribute to national data sets.

A sound partnership

The IDP will provide a framework under which the ABS and the ACT Government will work together to ensure the quality and timeliness of this data. This partnership will occur under the following governance structure.

  • Early each financial year, the ACT government Policy Council2 will meet to decide the strategic projects to be implemented under the plan for the upcoming year.
  • The proposed work program will be implemented by the Information Development Working Group (IDWG) that will report back to the Policy Council at the end of each year. At this time, a review of progress towards the goals will be provided along with identification of any barriers to achieving those goals. Additionally, the IDWG will recommend projects for the following year. Projects may take more than one year to complete.
  • Projects should fall within the high level goals of the IDP and the selection of projects to be recommended to the Policy Council should be influenced by:
      o State Statistical Forum Themes;
      o whole-of-government policy initiatives and statistical priorities;3
      o national reporting requirements and priority data requirements of critical national data sets.
The Information Development Plan will be reviewed in 2018-19. A detailed review of the progress of actions towards achieving the goals as set out in the Implementation Plan will be reviewed annually.

CONCLUSION

This IDP provides a high level strategic framework for the ABS and the ACT Government to work together for their mutual benefit. Under the IDP, the ACT Government will assist the ABS with the provision of high quality information that will contribute to the production of a range of national statistics and the ABS will assist the ACT Government with improving the quality of its administrative data to support their policy development and decision making.

Footnotes:
1ACT Information Development Plan 2008 – 2011 and ACT Information Development Plan 2012
2Policy Council, consisting of ACT Government Deputy Directors-General, with representation from relevant ABS Officials.
3Current whole-of-government statistical priorities (as at 2014-15) include: availability of administrative data; privacy and legislation; data linkage; Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander data; statistical capability. These policies are reviewed each year.


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