Slovenia among top 5 EU countries in openness of public sector data
In its publication Government at a Glance for 2019 the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) placed Slovenia in the very top in terms of the openness of public sector data. Slovenia ranks 10th in the world and 5th in the EU, immediately after France, Ireland, Spain and Greece (OURData Index, Table 9.4, p. 151).
The ranking in the Government at a Glance report is based on the OURData Index 2019, which is produced by the OECD every two years and assesses the implementation of government policies concerning open public sector data. Slovenia is included in the group of countries (with Ireland and Poland) that have made outstanding progress since 2017 (rising 9 places). The index is based on the principles of the Open Data Charter and consists of three indicators: data availability, data accessibility and government support for data reuse.
In Chapter 9 on digital government and open government data (page 145) the OECD highlights the use of digital tools for achieving the highest possible added value and of digital ecosystem facilitating the collaboration of state authorities, citizens, non-governmental organisations, businesses and academics, and the exchange of data, services and content with the government. Open data portals are an example of such digital tool.
The national Open Data Portal of Slovenia (OPSI) managed by the Ministry of Public Administration was set up in 2016 as a single online point for publishing open data of the entire public sector. Both, metadata descriptions of public sector databases and open databases are available on the portal. Raw data published as open data on the OPSI portal can be reused freely. This means that any person can acquire and reuse such data without special requirements or registration. The data are available in machine-readable format which allows researchers, journalists and entrepreneurs to make new analyses, applications, visualizations and similar. Slovenia is one of the few European countries that make documents for government consideration prepared by the Secretariat-General of the Government and data of the national statistical office publicly available on the open data portal.
As regards the promotion of data reuse in Slovenia, competitions in application design on the basis of open data, i.e. hackathons, initiated and co-organised by the Ministry of Public Administration, are particularly notable. Last year's hackathon integrated various stakeholders into a digital ecosystem, which together with the Ministry of Culture and the Slovenian Tourist Board sought solutions for tourism to mark 2018 as the European Year of Cultural Heritage. This year's hackathon was organised in cooperation with the Police and Municipal Police Department of the City of Ljubljana and addressed the challenges of traffic safety and mobility. In the area of open data, the state authorities collaborate with the University. Each year they hold an Open Data Festival in which students solve challenges posed by open data processing throughout the semester.