In continuation of its effort to ensure effective delivery of Government services to the masses, the State Cabinet has approved the Assam State Data Policy 2022. The policy provides for improved access, use, integration & interoperability of data thereby leading to better decision-making, effective tracking of policy implementation and efficient delivery of services.
The rationale of the policy is to make use of the data being generated for evidence-based decision making for targeted public service delivery. “Since data being generated using public funds is growing exponentially and subsequent opportunities for Government data is there, we felt that the State requires a data policy now more than ever before. This will allow real-time monitoring and evaluation of the various flagship schemes of Central and State Governments,” IT Minister Keshab Mahanta told Asom Barta in an email response.
“Even though a large quantum of data is generated by various departments, organisations and institutions of the Government, access to such data and digital systems remains confined to individual departments in a largely disconnected manner. There was an absence of cohesion among departments as to how data can be shared, how to make them available for use within and across departments, besides other issues. This impeded the emergence of a data-driven decision-making culture in the Government sector. The new policy will address such issues”, the Minister said.
The ASDP 2022 will enable data-driven governance with data derivatives serving as public good to enhance government efficiency, improve access to quality public services and delivery of citizen centric benefits, and help advance digital transformation. This will also lay the foundation to build a Social Registry for efficient and targeted public service delivery. It will promote data-usage as a value asset across departments, institutions, and autonomous bodies of Government of Assam, thereby contributing to the overall growth strategy for the State.
The Assam State Data Policy 2022 provides the framework and guidelines for collection, collation, processing and storage of data in machine readable format; classification and publishing of open data; secure and restricted access of non-open data across departments towards effective policy formulation and programme implementation. It also aims to secure permission for access of anonymized/ de-identified datasets to entities outside of Government for research and analytical studies aimed at policy design and implementation.
Most Central schemes have Management Information Systems (MIS) in place for monitoring & evaluation through data analytics which is sparingly or not available in the case of State schemes. In many cases, data generated by departments are not ‘cross-talking systems’ which results in duplicity and estimation errors in beneficiary identification, among others.
Work on the ASDP 2022 began on April 19 this year with the constitution of a committee under Anurag Goel, Principal Secretary, Department of Information Technology. The committee’s mandate was to lay down the principles and direction for data accessibility and use it to promote data as a value asset for data-driven governance and thereby contributing to the overall growth strategy for Assam.
Framework and guidelines for collection, collation, processing, and storage of data in machine readable format.
Classification and publishing of open data.
Secure and restricted access of non-open data across departments towards effective policy formulation and programme implementation.
Secure access of anonymized/de-identified data sets through proper permission to entities outside of government for bona fide research and analytical studies aimed at policy design and implementation.This will allow real-time monitoring and evaluation of the various flagship schemes of Central and State Governments Keshab Mahanta, IT Minister