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Tunisia

The Completion of the Legal and Regulatory Framework of Open Data at the National Level (TN0023)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Tunisia Second National Action Plan 2016-2018

Action Plan Cycle: 2016

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: Ministry of Civil Service, Governance and Fight against Corruption (e-Government unit)

Support Institution(s): NA

Policy Areas

Access to Information, Capacity Building, Legislation & Regulation, Legislative, Open Data

IRM Review

IRM Report: Tunisia End-of-Term Report 2016-2018, Tunisia Mid-Term Report 2016-2018

Starred: No

Early Results: Did Not Change

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information , Technology

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

The completion of the legal and regulatory framework of open data at the national level

IRM Midterm Status Summary

3. Completion of the legal and regulatory framework of open data at the national level

Commitment Text:

The aim of this commitment is to make public data open by default, in formats that are usable and interoperable in order to improve Governance, citizen engagement, inclusive development and innovation.

Milestones:

  • Adopting a license to organize the public data re-use,
  • Developing a network of the persons in charge of open data in the various public departments and agencies,
  • Defining a national open data Charter,
  • Elaborating an inventory by a number of sectors of data that can be opened and which could be published on the web while specifying the frequency of their updates and the departmental targets for the publication.

Responsible institution: Presidency of the Government

Supporting institution(s):

As mentioned in the NAP: Parliament.

As assessed: World Bank, Article 19, ATCP, FSVC

Start date: June 2016        End date: March 2017

Context and Objectives

This commitment was carried forward from the previous action plan, where it saw limited completion. Originally the commitment included the elaboration of an open data portal only. The Tunisian government launched its first open data portal in 2012 with a limited number of datasets, including statistics on public administration activities, as well as listings of public offices. The commitment was modified for the second action plan to include more specifics, such as re-developing the open data portal to improve usability and data relevance. [17]

Moreover, in December 2016, the Tunisian government published its E-Government strategy, called Smart Gov 2020. Smart Gov implementation was planned for 2016 to 2020. The action plan includes the implementation of this commitment as a priority and was planned to be completed in early 2017. [18]

Tunisia is ranked 66 in the Open Data Index (ODI) with a weak score of 22 percent. The ODI indicates 0 percent score in multiple areas such as procurement, government spending and land ownership. Tunisia ranked 39 on the Open Data Barometer (ODB) [19] in 2015, with a score of 33.37, far from the average of the MENA region (19.31) or the Moroccan score (16.17). The implementation of the portal in 2014 increased the Tunisian score from 21 in 2013 to 33 in 2015, while the average score of the MENA region continued to decrease. According to the ODB, while Tunisia’s readiness is high, implementation and impact are low.

The objective of this commitment is to put in place procedures that would guarantee a continuous update of the open data resources from various government entities. The commitment aims to re-arrange the existing datasets on the portal.

The commitment contains specific milestones, with details of the targets and periodicity of data update. The commitment has a moderate potential impact. Tunisia has had a Presidential Decree on Open Data since 2011 but regulations and procedures are necessary to enforce it. This commitment identifies the steps needed to reinforce the existing framework. It is relevant to access to information as it entails making government data available in an open and re-usable format. Additionally, the commitment is relevant for technology and innovation as it specifies using digital best practices. Therefore, this commitment meets OGP values on access to information and technology and innovation for transparency and accountability.

Completion

This commitment completion is limited and is not on time. The E-Government Unit drafted procedures to obtain a license of data re-use and an open data charter. Besides the strong engagement of the E-Government Unit, there should be points of contact in charge of open data issues in the various public ministries and agencies.

The World Bank’s government unit in Tunisia provided technical assistance to help the E-Government Unit accomplish this commitment. During the interview, the World Bank project officer confirmed that funds would be available through 2019 to speed up completion.

Next Steps

This commitment should be carried forward in the next action plan. Given the support provided by the World Bank, the government should prioritize completing all the milestones.

The IRM researcher recommends the following:

  • Narrow down the commitment scope and develop a pilot project for specific datasets that could be published and updated regularly. By narrowing the commitment to certain ministries this objective could be completed in important sectors like education, interior, defense and health. Certain ministries have already appointed personnel on open data but would require a data inventory.
  • In the next action plan, the government could involve other stakeholders, such as the Authority of Access to Information, National Authority of Anti-Corruption, and the National Agency of Computer Security.
[19] Open Data Barometer 2016, https://opendatabarometer.org/

IRM End of Term Status Summary

3. The completion of the legal and regulatory framework of Open data at the national level

Commitment Text:

The aim of this commitment is to make public data open by default, in formats that are usable and interoperable in order to improve Governance, citizen engagement, inclusive development and innovation.

Milestones:

  • Adopting a license to organize the public data re-use,
  • Developing a network of the persons in charge of Open data in the various public departments and agencies,
  • Defining a national Open data Charter,
  • Elaborating an inventory by a number of sectors of data that can be opened, and which could be published on the web while specifying the frequency of their updates and the departmental targets for the publication.

Responsible institution: Ministry of Civil Service, Governance and Fight against Corruption (e-Government unit).

Start date: June 2016 End date: March 2017

Editorial Note: This is an abbreviated version of the commitment text. For the full commitment text from the Tunisia National Action Plan, see here.

Commitment Aim:

This commitment is the continuation of Commitment 5 from the previous action plan. The objective of this commitment is to develop a series of measures that would improve the Open Data practices within the Tunisian Government.

The milestones would ensure the update of the Open data resources from various government entities and re-arrange the existing Open datasets on the government portal. [24] The commitment includes the preparation of a national open data charter and it would also provide a legal backbone to public data reuse by issuing a license that sets out how the data could be re-used.

Status

Midterm: Limited

This commitment had limited completion by the midterm assessment. During this phase, the issuing license for data reuse and the national charter of Open data were at a draft level. The implementation of two milestones including developing a network of the persons in charge of Open data and preparing the inventory of data did not start.

End of term: Substantial

The E-Government and Open Data Unit partnered with the World Bank and several NGOs for technical and financial help. The license of public data reuse and the assignment of a network of public officials responsible for Open data were completed by the end of term. [25] [26] Meanwhile, the OGP steering committee decided to amend the commitment to strengthen its legal aspect by creating a law on open data instead of the data charter in April 2018. [27] [28] The steering committee and the government argued that this would reinforce public institutions’ engagement in Open data practices. The E-Government and Open Data Unit organized two workshops, on 5 and 6 April 2018, to announce the beginning of the projects. [29] The unit also conducted several other workshops and a consultation day related to the open data decree project that aimed to discuss and identify the main chapters and articles that will be included in the text of the law. [30] The draft of the decree was prepared [31] and submitted to the head of the government. It was still waiting for approval and publication at the time of writing this report.

Concerning the inventory of the data that could be opened up, several steps were undertaken at central and local levels, but the inventory was not completed by the end of the action plan period. The government, with the support of the World Bank, selected five ministries and one public agency for a pilot on Open Data. The selection includes institutions such as Agriculture, local affairs and environment, industry, culture, transport and social security fund. These ministries expressed interest in being part of the pilot following a series of meetings between the World Bank and the Tunisian Government. A series of workshops and trainings were organized afterwards. [32]

Moreover, the Association Tunisienne des Controleurs Publics (ATCP), through its program Onshor, held 45 workshops in various municipalities to assess their readiness for opening their data, and developed a report. The IRM researcher could not obtain information as to the detailed content of the workshops.

Did It Open Government?

Access to Information: Did not change

Changing the regulatory framework of the proposed measure from national open data Charter to the decree on open data strengthened the authority of the proposed measure. The steps taken by this commitment signal a positive direction for institutional adoption of open data practices. However, without the completion of the data inventory it is not possible to assess yet if the commitment resulted in more or better data being disclosed and open data practices have yet to be implemented.

Carried Forward?

This commitment was not carried forward to the next action plan.

[24] Government of Tunisia, Open Data Portal, http://www.data.gov.tn/
[25] Interview with Khaled Sellami, Prime Ministry, Tunis, 18 May 2018.
[26] Licence d'ouverture des données, Open Data Portal. http://fr.data.gov.tn/38-les-licences.htm
[27] Interview with Asma Cherifi and Aysha Karrafi, OGP CSOs steering committee, 19 May 2018.
[28] Interview with Ibrahim El Ghandour and Mootaz Chaouachi, World Bank Tunisia, 17 May 2018.
[29] Government of Tunisia, End of Term Self-Assessment, http://www.ogptunisie.gov.tn/en/?p=1154
[30] Ibid.
[31] Ibid.
[32] Government of Tunisia, findings from interviews with Ibrahim El Ghandour, World Bank and Khaled Sellami.

Commitments

  1. Right to Information

    TN0036, 2018, Access to Information

  2. Open Data Framework

    TN0037, 2018, Access to Information

  3. Access to Geographic Information

    TN0038, 2018, Access to Information

  4. Open Transport Data

    TN0039, 2018, Access to Information

  5. Improve Water Resource Governance

    TN0040, 2018, E-Government

  6. Join EITI

    TN0041, 2018, Anti-Corruption

  7. Open Contracting in Hydrocarbons

    TN0042, 2018, Access to Information

  8. Anti-Corruption Framework

    TN0043, 2018, Anti-Corruption

  9. Participatory Budgeting

    TN0044, 2018, Anti-Corruption

  10. Youth Participation

    TN0045, 2018, Marginalized Communities

  11. Implement Initiatives to Apply the OGP at the Local Level

    TN0046, 2018, E-Government

  12. Online Administrative Services

    TN0047, 2018, Capacity Building

  13. Access to Civil Service

    TN0048, 2018, Capacity Building

  14. Joining the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative "EITI"

    TN0021, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  15. Modernizing the Regulatory Framework to Enforce The Right To Access to Information

    TN0022, 2016, Access to Information

  16. The Completion of the Legal and Regulatory Framework of Open Data at the National Level

    TN0023, 2016, Access to Information

  17. Improve the Transparency and Local Gov Openness

    TN0024, 2016, Access to Information

  18. Enhance the Transparency in the Cultural Sector : “Open Culture”

    TN0025, 2016, Access to Information

  19. Enhance the Transparency in the Environment and Sustainable Development Sector

    TN0026, 2016, Access to Information

  20. Enhancing Transparency in the Transport Sector

    TN0027, 2016, Access to Information

  21. Promoting Financial and Fiscal Transparency

    TN0028, 2016, Fiscal Openness

  22. Elaborating a Legal Framework for Citizen’S Petitions

    TN0029, 2016, Capacity Building

  23. Developing an Integrated Electronic Civil Petition and Corruption Reporting Platform

    TN0030, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  24. Developing New Mechanisms to Promote Interaction with the Youth and Enable Them to Pursue Dialogue About Public Policies

    TN0031, 2016, Capacity Building

  25. Adopting the Corporate Governance Referential on the Sectoral Level

    TN0032, 2016, Capacity Building

  26. Developing Mobile Applications Which Could Be Downloaded on the Mobile Phone to Reinforce Transparency of Government Activities and Participatory Approach

    TN0033, 2016, Capacity Building

  27. Enhancing Access to the Archive

    TN0034, 2016, Capacity Building

  28. The Development of an Electronic Mechanism to Ensure Transparency of Public Servants Recruitment

    TN0035, 2016, Capacity Building

  29. Strengthening Legal Framework for Corruption Fight

    TN0001, 2014, Anti-Corruption

  30. Developing an Integrated Electronic Civil Petition and Corruption Reporting Platform

    TN0002, 2014, E-Government

  31. Publishing an Annual Report on Audit Activities in Public Sector

    TN0003, 2014, Anti-Corruption

  32. Review of the Legal Framework of Personal Data Protection and Ensuring Conformity with Article 24 of Tunisian Constitution

    TN0004, 2014, Access to Information

  33. Developing an Open Data Portal

    TN0005, 2014, Access to Information

  34. Preparing a National Corporate Governance Repository

    TN0006, 2014, E-Government

  35. Establishing a Legal Framework That Regulates Communication and Interaction Within Public Sector and Between Public Structures and Citizens with Usage of ICT

    TN0007, 2014, E-Government

  36. Simplifying Administrative Procedures

    TN0008, 2014, E-Government

  37. Develop a Number of Administrative Services On-Line

    TN0009, 2014, E-Government

  38. Enhancing People Participation in the Decision-Making Process

    TN0010, 2014, E-Government

  39. Capacity-Building of Civil Servants and Citizens in the Area of Open Governance

    TN0011, 2014, Capacity Building

  40. Creation of a Structure Specialized in Training in the Governance Area

    TN0012, 2014, Capacity Building

  41. Publication of Budget Reports

    TN0013, 2014, Anti-Corruption

  42. Development of the Open Budget System

    TN0014, 2014, Fiscal Openness

  43. Use of the Data Extracted from the Application Dedicated to Budget Management (Adeb) in Public Sector

    TN0015, 2014, Anti-Corruption

  44. Publication of Reports Related to Attribution and Execution of Public Procurement and Audit Results

    TN0016, 2014, Anti-Corruption

  45. Publication of Recommandations Included in Audit Reports of Public Procurement

    TN0017, 2014, Anti-Corruption

  46. Development of an "Open Data" Platform Dedicated to Information Dealing with Oil and Mine Sector Investment

    TN0018, 2014, Access to Information

  47. Improve Transparency in the Area of Infrastructure Projects

    TN0019, 2014, Access to Information

  48. Devoting Transparency in the Environment Field

    TN0020, 2014, Access to Information

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