Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Governments remain a long way away from citizen-centricity

Queensland's Office of the Information Commissioner recently released a new guideline, Accessing Government Information. A step-by-step guide for the general public (PDF).

This is a commendable publication, providing a plain English guide to the rights of consumers and explaining to citizens how to go about framing and asking for government information.


Having guides for citizens on accessing government information, while useful, represents the old world rather than the new.

Employing Government 2.0 approaches we should reverse this approach. Rather than government telling citizens how to navigate agency processes to access public information, the public should be telling government how information should be presented to them.

The community should write the guidelines and have agencies follow them, rather than the current position where agencies act as the authoritative bodies and citizens the applicants.

Unfortunately I think governments remain a long way away from the goal of being citizen-centric. Particularly where it relates to public data.

1 comment:

  1. Forget open data for a moment and think about accessiblity. Despite the explicit instruction "Large print format type size must be at least 18 point sans serif characters." in the "Disability standards for accessible public transport" I am still yet to see a transport timetable in Australia provided in that format without a special request. Why? They all just use the default timetable report out of the HASTUS timetable management software.