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Greece

Open Ministry of Interior Data (GR0069)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Greece Action Plan 2019-2022

Action Plan Cycle: 2019

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: Ministry of the Interior

Support Institution(s): NA

Policy Areas

Access to Information, Anti-Corruption, E-Government, Fiscal Openness, Local Commitments, Open Data, Political Integrity, Publication of Budget/Fiscal Information

IRM Review

IRM Report: Greece Design Report 2019-2021

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review

Description

Commitment 5: Open access to data of the Ministry of the Interior

Current situation
The information is now covered by Law 4305/2014 on the «Open access and re-use of documents,
information and public sector data, amendment of Law 3448/2006 (Α΄ 57), adaptation of national
legislation to the provisions of Directive 2013/37/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council,
further strengthening of the transparency, regulation of issues regarding the recruitment competition
of the National School of Public Administration and Local Government and other provisions» (Official
Gazette Α’ 237/31.10.2014), with the differentiations provided for under the Directive regarding
libraries, museums and archives, and a specific provisions regarding the protection of cultural
heritage.

Description of Commitment
A wealth of data falling within the scope of Law 4305/2014 is available to the Ministry of the Interior
and its supervised entities and will be made available for re-use in order to contribute to the
development and participation of citizens.

OGP Principles
Access to public information

Implementation entities, stakeholders
Implementation: Ministry of the Interior

Cooperation with supervised entities.
Contact details: Ministry of the Interior, Directorate of E-government

Objective
1) Anonymisation and creation of new datasets
2) Integration of new datasets
3) Mobilisation of entities of the Ministry of the Interior for data publication
4) Improvement of the quality of datasets
5) Open data release decisions
6) Upgrading of digital applications and provision of additional datasets

Key milestones - Timetable
Milestone Completion
1) Anonymisation and creation of new datasets
2) Integration of new datasets
3) Mobilisation of entities of the Ministry of the Interior for data
4) Improvement of the quality of datasets
5) Open data release decisions
6) Upgrading of digital applications and provision of additional datasets

IRM Midterm Status Summary

5. Open access to data of the Ministry of the Interior

Main Objective

The published NAP mentions (p.22) the main objective for this commitment as follows:

"Description of Commitment: A wealth of data falling within the scope of Law 4305/2014 is available to the Ministry of the Interior and its supervised entities and will be made available for re-use in order to contribute to the development and participation of citizens."

"Objectives: 1) Anonymisation and creation of new datasets

2) Integration of new datasets

3) Mobilisation of entities of the Ministry of the Interior for data publication

4) Improvement of the quality of datasets

5) Open data release decisions

6) Upgrading of digital applications and provision of additional datasets."

Milestones

The published NAP mentions (p. 22-23) the milestones for this commitment as follows:

"1) Anonymisation and creation of new datasets

2) Integration of new datasets

3) Mobilisation of entities of the Ministry of the Interior for data publication

4) Improvement of the quality of datasets

5) Open data release decisions

6) Upgrading of digital applications and provision of additional datasets."

Editorial Note: For the complete text of this commitment, please see Greece's action plan at https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Greece_Action-Plan_2019-2021_EN.pdf, p.22-23.

IRM Design Report Assessment

Verifiable:

Yes

Relevant:

Yes

Access to Information

Potential impact:

Minor

Commitment analysis

This commitment aims to publish and improve the quality of election results data, expenses of election candidates, financial data of local authorities, data on the state administrative structure, and data related to the acquisition, rejection and withdrawal of Greek citizenship that the Ministry of Interior (MI) holds.

The commitment is verifiable because it outlines the expected number of datasets to be published in 2019. The commitment has sufficient relevance to the Access to Information OGP value because, if implemented fully, it will lead the government to disclose updated information (milestones 1, 2 and 5) and could improve the quality of the information disclosed to the public (milestone 4). [43]

The MI had published 20 datasets across open data portals as of May 2019 [44] [45] and more than 40 open datasets on its own website as of May 2019, [46] including a report on MI's open data policy and practice. [47] Some of these datasets include high-level data on crime, forest fires, and elections information, such as lists of local councilors and number of voters per constituency. The MI has explained in interviews that all datasets available prior to release of the action plan are by definition anonymised. Datasets that have been published prior to release of the fourth action plan have concerned elections, organisation of local administrations and citizenship applications. The MI has also stated that supervised entities of MI have already been publishing datasets as obliged by law and have met this requirement and the milestones. The MI stated that not all published data are machine readable.

The potential impact of the commitment is coded as having minor impact. [48] It is expected to make available for reuse some more datasets curated by the lead ministry and supervised entities. The ministry has confirmed that although some datasets have already been published and do not constitute new datasets, it expects to improve the quality of the datasets available for reuse by publishing in Excel as well as PDF formats and making it easier to access the information directly via the ministry website. [49] The publication of financial data of local authorities in reusable formats will enable local civil society and citizens to engage in challenging financial spending, proposing spending or policy changes, and enable a greater evidence base for making arguments on such proposals. Concerning the rationale behind choosing datasets to open, MI mentioned that these choices are based on what is perceived by the ministry as bringing about more transparency and responding better to citizen interests and did not mention involving relevant stakeholders outside the public sector in this process. Desk research [50] revealed a number of topical issues for this ministry's domain of responsibility for which publishing open data may have a value and could help to improve policies and processes. An indicative example is information on policies and decisions related to citizen naturalisation which will allow for these decisions to be scrutinised and challenged where necessary.

Any changes to planned implementation could include selecting datasets to open according to citizens' priorities and/or by bringing CSOs and other stakeholders into the process of improving and selecting datasets to publish.

[47] Annual Report on the Availability and Reuse of Open Data in Application of Article 12C, Law 4305/2014 (in Greek), published on April 21, 2016, available at https://www.ypes.gr/etisia-ekthesi-gia-ti-diathesi-kai-peraitero-chrisi-ton-anoichton-dedomenon-se-efarmogi-toy-arth-12g-toy-n-4305-2014/ .
[48] As these codings are defined in the "IRM Procedures Manual" (OGP), available at https://www.opengovpartnership.org/documents/irm-procedures-manual , p. 64-66.
[49] The Ministry of Interior confirmed this in feedback during the prepublication period.
[50] Concerning Commitment 5 - Open access to data of the Ministry of the Interior, news headlines concerning the lead Ministry have been desk-searched for the 12-month period prior to action plan release, namely the period from May 2018 up to April 2019. Headline search has been run on a number of Greek investigative journalism news outlets (Protagon.gr, The Press Project, Documento, TVXS) and on the Google News service, using the following queries, respectively: https://cutt.ly/3aCRVAF ; https://cutt.ly/1aCR322 ; https://cutt.ly/8aCTwWa ; https://cutt.ly/waCToft ; and https://cutt.ly/IaCThU4 . The headlines harvested have been thematically encoded and clustered for topical issues concerning the lead Ministry's domain of responsibility, and the following list of identified topical issues has been produced (numbers in parentheses refer to partial with respect to total harvested results): auditing of election costs (2/29); citizen naturalization (policies, decisions) (4/29); illegal constructions demolishment (policies, decisions) (2/29); non-competitive selection processes (non-permanent staff) (2/29); public servants recruitment (policies, calls, decisions) (6/29); subsidies and debts to local administration (policies, decisions) (7/29); support for low-income families (policies, decisions) (2/29); and support for wildfire victims (policies, decisions) (4/29). These issues are not listed in any specific order, but they all correspond to topics which (a) fall under the lead Ministry's domain of responsibility; (b) meet the public's interest; and (c) are often the subject of ad hoc, opaque or problematic treatment, as testified by the news harvested. In this respect, releasing open data on these topics would be useful for the public and could bring forward a positive impact in improving the relevant processes and policies of the lead ministry.

Commitments

Open Government Partnership