1304.5 - Stats Talk WA (Newsletter), Oct 2004  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 03/12/2004   
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Update from NSS Coordinator

Image: Andy Separovic, newly apponted NSS Coordinator
Andy Separovic,newly appointed NSS Coordinator
The NSS web site <http://www.nss.gov.au> was released on 14 May and is designed to support both producers and users of statistics. For producers it provides assistance in the collection, processing and dissemination of data, including advice on best practice and links to statistical training. For users it provides assistance in identifying statistical information suitable to their needs.

The web site provides a core set of resources. Including:
  • NSS Handbook and Key Principles;
  • Directory of Statistical Sources;
  • Information Development Plans;
  • Statistical training offered by government agencies;
  • Papers on statistical best practice; and
  • Concepts, classifications and data dictionaries.
ABS WA is working closely with State government to progress NSS initiatives by developing strategies aimed at improving the range of statistical information available for policy, research and decision making. The NSS strategy recognises the importance of non-ABS information sources and ABS WA will be developing an inventory of state data holdings toward the end of 2004. A key element of the NSS strategy is to identify and assess relevant datasets currently held by State agencies. At the national level the National Data Network will create a distributed library of data holdings relevant to policy analysis and research and is being developed by the ABS in collaboration with other interested agencies.

An 'Overview of the National Data Network' has been published. This document outlines the core elements of the National Data Network and how the project will be progressed. This document is available from the National Data Network web site <http://www.nationaldatanetwork.org>
A demonstration version of the National Data Network is currently being developed to showcase the functionality of the network. The specific outcomes of this project are:

  • to identify the feasibility of developing a networked system (utilising open source software) to share data and provide on-line statistical services in the government context;
  • to understand the cost to Custodians of implementing and participating in a National Data Network; and
  • to understand the issues associated with the sharing of secure information in accordance with the policy of each agency.
A discussion Forum is available on the web site to allow the membership network to contribute to the development of systems and procedures.
Positive NSS outcomes continue to be achieved through the provision of outposting services. Outposted ABS officers continue to play an important role in providing statistical expertise and improving the quality of statistical information across government agencies.

For further information contact Andy Separovic, NSS Coordinator, ((08) 9360 5920 or email: <andy.separovic@abs.gov.au>