[Press Release] ISOC HK's 2nd “Hong Kong Open Data Index” reveals slight improvements on the city’s open data development

2022-03-25
Internet Society Hong Kong’s 2nd “Hong Kong Open Data Index” reveals slight improvements on the city’s open data development
Four recommendations from ISOC HK, calling for a data governance committee and enhancement in data literacy & skills education

24th March 2022, Hong Kong -- Internet Society Hong Kong (ISOC HK) launched the new “Hong Kong Open Data Index (HKODI) 2021/22 Assessment Report” online, the organization's 2nd assessment on the city’s open data development. Report shows a slight improvement on the overall score. This time, ISOC HK also partners with Global Data Barometer (GDB), a new index covering 109 jurisdictions around the world, expanding its assessment scope from open data to a broader topic - data governance. The report has incorporated results on Hong Kong from this new global study which will be officially launched in late April.

Image: ISOC HK launched the new“Hong Kong Open Data Index (HKODI) 2021/22 Assessment Report”, the organization's 2nd assessment on the city’s open data development.

Findings: Slight improvement on overall score; Transport and Weather data recorded substantial advancements, but Copyright licences, metadata, API and historical records remain major weaknesses

HKODI 2021/22 has witnessed a slight improvement of 2.5 points on the overall score of the city’s public data openness, which increased from last year’s 69.9 to 72.4 this year.

The most significant growths are found in the performance of Transport and Weather data. The score of the transport data category has increased by 10%, as more public transport service operators, such as KMB and green minibus, have joined the government initiative to release estimated time of arrival (ETA) data on the Public Service Information (PSI) portal. This is another breakthrough after the release of real-time arrival data of NWFB and Citybus, New Lantau Bus, and some MTR routes in 2019. The Climate & Weather data category has risen by 16%, as the Hong Kong Observatory has been releasing more real-time datasets including temperature and wind on the PSI portal in the past two years. “It is also worth mentioning that the data sets released by the government's PSI portal have increased significantly in the past two years, and its score has increased by 11%. The score difference between PSI portal and other general government websites has widened from 2.1 to 7.9 points, demonstrating the advantages of a designated open data platform.” mentioned researcher of HKODI, Benjamin Zhou.  While indicators of bulk download, API, granularity (primary) and historical records (permanent) have each increased for slightly more than 5%.

Figure: Comparison of data categories 2019/20 vs. 2021/22. In the new report, the best performing data categories are namely Census & Statistics (87.5), Transport (85) and Education (83.1).

Despite the improvements, some gaps initially found in the 2019/20 assessment still remain. The lowest-scored five categories of datasets are the same: Business registration, Land, Justice & Security, Housing and Government operations. While copyright licences, metadata, Application Programming Interface (API) and historical records (permanent) are still the worst performing indicators.  For instance, copyright licenses are inconsistent across datasets and platforms, metadata for datasets are inadequate, historical records of published datasets are not well documented or disorganized in their presentation.

Global Data Barometer (GDB) on Hong Kong: HK data governance policies are insufficient, unlikely to realize data’s public and commercial value effectively, safely and reliably

Partnering with Global Data Barometer (GDB), the new HKODI report incorporates results on Hong Kong from this new global study. GDB assesses beyond open data and it is organized around four pillars: data governance, capability, availability and use & impact. “The GDB has been designed to fill the critical knowledge gap on how data policies and practices are unfolding in different sectors, regions and countries around the world,” remarked Silvana Fumega, Director of GDB, in a pre-recorded speech shown during the press conference. The final complete result of GDB is to be launched in late April 2022.

From GDB’s research, it shows that governance is the weakest pillar for Hong Kong as it only secures a medium in GDB’s global ranking; while for the other three pillars: ability, availability, and use, Hong Kong are ranked relatively high globally, and its overall score is at an upper-middle level compared to other countries and regions. The governance module includes indicators of data protection, open data policy, data sharing frameworks, data management and accessibility. Hong Kong scores high in data protection scores for having Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance in place; however scores for all other indicators are far from ideal, policies regarding data sharing and data management were found to be barely publicly available. “We are glad to see improvements on Hong Kong’s data openness and the benefits it brought to our society,” said Ben Cheng, Director of ISOC HK, “However, Hong Kong open data governance and policies remains rudimentary, the government should employ a holistic approach in developing an overarching data governance framework to unlock more potentials”.

The report discovers that many advanced economies have successively launched all-rounded data governance strategies in recent years. New Zealand's "Government Data Strategy and Roadmap" and the UK's "National Data Strategy" are relatively mature, while Singapore is actively planning its own. In the past year, cities and provinces in mainland China also successively introduced data-related regulations, for example, Shenzhen passed the country's first comprehensive local data regulation in 2021, while Shanghai has also adopted similar legislation.

FOUR recommendations for the government: Establish a high level committee to steer data governance, make a clear vision and goals for data governance, build up a data ecosystem that encourages stakeholder and public engagement & enhance education on data literacy and skills

Better planning and coordination are needed to unlock the benefits of data values while achieving the “data for good” vision. ISOC HK recommends the Hong Kong government to establish a high-level committee for better coordination and leadership. According to ISOC HK, a holistic approach for data governance, which usually requires a high-level leadership and governance structure comprising policy-makers and experts, should be employed. This committee should have a mandate and resources to tackle institutional obstacles and with the vision and networks to bring in new initiatives.

Secondly, ISOC HK urges the government to make a clear vision and goals for data governance, including the priority of values to achieve and datasets to open or share, legislations, administrative adjustment, data infrastructure, standards and rules. In addition, the government could set up a data officer for each department to coordinate the internal and interdepartmental data management. “The government should set up a series of key performance indicators (KPI) to demonstrate its commitment and make sure that each department is putting open data into practices”, said Ho Wa Wong, Convener of ISOC HK’s Open Data Committee, “Singapore's Digital Government Blueprint is a good example that our government can learn from. It has explicitly mentioned several data analytics related KPIs such as numbers of high impact data analytics projects and setting up an indicator to make sure core data being machine readable data and transmissible through API”.

Thirdly, ISOC HK recommends the government to build up a data ecosystem that encourages stakeholder and public engagement. For example, some consumer behaviour data, such as those collected by Octopus and online shopping platforms, are of public interest. The government could be an enabler to facilitate the industry building a trustworthy data sharing platform.The public should also be engaged on data demand and privacy issues, a more transparent consultation platform should be set up.

Last but not least, ISOC HK stresses on the importance of data literacy. Data literacy involves understanding the meaning of data, and there are a wider range of skills including using data to solve problems and communicate and knowledge of data laws and ethics, which are different from the current STEM. Given the vast scope of data literacy education, ISOC HK suggests the government to put forward a data literacy enhancement policy targeting two main groups of audience: 1) general public via school, university and vocational education; and 2) civil servants to create a culture of valuing data in the public sector.

Photo: Internet Society Hong Kong(ISOC HK) organized an online press conference to launch their latest “HongKong Open Data Index (HKODI) 2021/22 Assessment Report”, the organization's 2nd assessment on the city’s open data development. Researcher of “Hong Kong OpenData Index” Benjamin Zhou (Left), Director of ISOC HK Ben Cheng (Center) andConvener of ISOC HK’s Open Data Committee Wong Ho Wa (Right) explained the report findings to the press and public, giving 4 recommendations on how to achieve "data for good" vision in Hong Kong.

 

【新聞稿】香港互聯網協會發布第二份《香港開放數據指數》 反映整體評分輕微上升 協會提出四大建議 包括政府成立數據管治委員會及加強數據素養及技能教育

2022-03-25
香港互聯網協會發布第二份《香港開放數據指數》 反映整體評分輕微上升
協會提出四大建議
包括政府成立數據管治委員會及加強數據素養及技能教育

(2022 年 3 月 24 日 —  香港)香港互聯網協會 (Internet Society Hong Kong) 舉行網上記者會,發布了《香港開放數據指數 (HKODI) 2021/22 評估報告》,為協會對香港開放數據發展的第二份評估報告。報告顯示香港開放數據的整體評分略有提高。另外,協會在2021年參與了涵蓋全球 109 個國家及地區的新研究 ——「全球數據指標」(Global Data Barometer) 項目,將關注範疇從開放數據擴大至更廣闊的數據管治(data governance)層面,並率先將結果中的香港部份納入本次《指數》評估報告,詳細的全球排名預計於四月底公布。

圖: 香港互聯網協會發布新一份《香港開放數據指數 (HKODI) 2021/22 評估報告》,為協會對香港開放數據發展的第二份評估報告。

主要發現:香港開放數據的整體評分略有提高,交通運輸和天氣類別的評分提升最顯著,開放授權標識清晰程度,元數據、API和歷史檔案四項指標表現較弱

《香港開放數據指數 2021/22》反映香港公共數據開放總體得分從去年的 69.9 上升至今年的 72.4,輕微增加2.5分。

增長最顯著的數據類別為交通和天氣數據。交通數據類別的得分提升 10%,主因是2021年有更多的公共交通服務運營商,包括九巴和綠色專線小巴的實時預計到達時間 (Estimated time of arrival) 數據在「資料一線通」平台上釋出,這是繼2019年新巴城巴、新大嶼山巴士、港鐵部分線路開放實時到達數據後的又一進步。氣候和天氣數據類別的評分增加了 16%,同樣得益於過去兩年香港天文台在「資料一線通」上發布了更多實時數據集,包括溫度和風相關資料。「香港開放數據指數」研究員周穗斌表示:「值得一提的是,政府的「資料一線通」網站過去兩年發布的數據集明顯增加,指數評估得分亦提升了 11%,與其他一般政府網站的差距加大,從上一次僅相差2.1分到此次變成7.9分之差,開始顯示出專屬開放數據平台的優勢。」另外,批量下載、API、原始資料(精細程度)和歷史檔案(永久保存)等四項指標分別錄得升幅略超 5%。

圖表: 2019/20 與 2021/22 指數數據類別表現的比較。新一份報告中,表現最好的數據類別分別是人口普查和統計(87.5)、交通(85)和教育(83.1)。

儘管新報告反映本港開放數據整體情況有所改進,但一些在 2019/20 年度評估中表現較弱的數據類別未見變化,評分最低的五類數據依舊分別是:商業登記、土地、司法及安全、房屋和政府運作。總體表現依舊較弱的指標是開放授權標識清晰程度、元數據、API 和歷史檔案。例如,各政府部門網站與開放數據平台針對同一數據卻採用不同授權條款、元數據不足夠、數據集的歷史記錄欠缺或呈現形式混亂等。

「全球數據指標」評估顯示,香港的數據管治政策不足,難以有效且安全可靠地發揮數據的公共及商業價值

《香港開放數據指數 2021/22》引入了新的「全球數據指標」(Global Data Barometer) 有關香港的研究結果。「全球數據指標」的研究範圍不限於開放數據,它由四大支柱構成,分別是:管治(governance)、能力 (capability)、可獲得程度 (availability)、使用及影響 (use and impact)。「全球數據指標」的總監 Silvana Fumega在新聞發布會上透過預錄影的講話指出:「『全球數據指標』旨在填補數據政策和實踐上的關鍵知識空白,探索數據政策如在全球不同領域、地區和國家落實及發展。」 「全球數據指標」的完整結果預計於 2022 年 4 月下旬發布。

從「全球數據指標」的研究來看,數據管治是香港最弱的一環,全球排名中等;而能力、可獲得程度、使用等其他三大支柱得分均排在全球較高位置,香港總體得分相比其他國家地區亦屬中上水平。評估數據管治的具體指標有:數據保護、開放數據政策、數據共享框架、數據管理,以及獲取數據的便利程度等;除數據保護方面因有《個人資料(私隱)條例》而得分較高,其餘指標均不甚理想,研究人員幾乎無法查到專門針對數據共享和數據管理的政策措施。香港互聯網協會董事鄭斌彬表示:「我們很高興看到香港的數據開放程度有所改善,並為我們的社會帶來了好處。可是,香港的整體數據管理及應用仍處於起步階段,政府應全面地發展一個總體的數據管治框架,以釋出數據更多的潛在好處。」

報告發現,很多先進經濟體近年陸續推出整體數據管治策略,較為完善的有新西蘭的《政府數據策略及路線圖》及英國的《國家數據策略》,新加坡正在積極籌畫中;中國內地一些省市在過去一年則陸續推出數據相關的法規,例如深圳2021年通過全國第一部地方性數據綜合法規,上海也進行了類似的立法。

四大建議:成立高層次的數據管治委員會、明確數據管治的願景和目標、打造數據生態系統,鼓勵持份者及公眾參與及加強數據素養及數據技能教育

要進一步釋放數據價值,需要更完善的規劃和協調,以確保數據真正向善發展。香港互聯網協會建議香港政府成立高層次數據管治委員會以強化統籌及領導能力。政府應採用整體的方式進行數據管治,以及成立融合了政策制定者和專家的綜合管治架構。該委員會應有足夠的權力和資源來解決窒礙數據價值發揮的制度性問題,也希望委員具社會代表性,能帶來一些創新解決方案。

其次,協會認為政府應明確數據管治的願景和目標,包括確定需要著重優化的數據領域及層次、法例、行政架構、數據基礎設施、規範與標準,以及根據需求確定優先開放或共享的數據。在執行層面,政府可以在各部門設立數據主任一職,專門負責部門內數據事宜並作跨部門協調。香港互聯網協會開放數據委員會召集人黃浩華指出:「政府應制定一系列關鍵績效指標 (KPI) 以表明其決心,並確保各部門能切實推動開放數據發展。新加坡的數碼政府藍圖 (Digital Government Blueprint) 就是一個政府可以借鑑的好例子。它明確提到了幾個與數據分析相關的 KPI,例如高影響數據分析項目的數量,並設置指標以確保核心數據是機器可讀的及可通過 API 傳輸的。」

第三,協會建議政府鼓勵持份者及公眾參與,打造數據生態系統。例如,一些消費狀況的數據,如八達通或網購平台的數據,涉及公共利益,政府可協助設立安全可靠的機制供持份者之間共享,甚至開放數據。同時,在公眾切身的數據需求和私隱等問題上,應設立平台以較為透明的方式吸納公眾意見。 

最後,協會強調數據素養 (data literacy) 的重要性。數據素養包括如何解讀數據,對應的技能相當豐富:既有用數據解決問題和溝通的能力,也有關乎數據的法律及道德知識,並不等同於現有的STEM教育。鑑於數據教育的範圍廣泛,協會建議政府分大致分兩類群體實施:1)一般公眾,主要在學校、高等教育、職業教育等體系中完善相關課程;2)公務員,透過培訓及其他制度性方式在政府內培育重視數據的文化。

圖: 香港互聯網協會舉行網上記者會, 「香港開放數據指數」研究員周穗斌(左)、香港互聯網協會董事鄭斌彬(中)及開放數據小組召集人黃浩華(右)向記者及公眾講解報告內容,並向政府提出 4 大建議,推動「數據向善」。

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