Georgetown, 28 September 2016 – At a conference held today, IDEAS announced that it would offer free consultation for the federal government and any state governments interested to adopt open data as part of their good governance agenda. This is in support of the government’s desire to transform public service for productivity as stated in the 11th Malaysia Plan.

This announcement was made at the “Fighting Corruption through a Transparent and Open Government” seminar jointly organised by IDEAS and the Governance, Integrity, Accountability and Transparency (GIAT) Coalition, held at Penang Institute today.

IDEAS Chief Operating Officer, Tricia Yeoh said, “the Malaysian government already has an open data agenda being rolled out at the national level. Tan Sri Mohd Zabidi Zainal, Director General of Public Service, spoke in March this year about the government’s desire to reengineer the public sector to increase capability and enable a dynamic, agile and flexible organisational structure strongly supported by technology. He also said that the government wants to enhance service delivery for citizen-centric services.”

“We want to support this aim. We see today that new data sets are being uploaded on the government’s data portal on a regular basis. Information which have impact on peoples’ lives are increasingly being shared. The government is moving in the right direction and we would like to help catalyse the process.”

“Last year Malaysia’s scores fell from 30.76 to 24.6 out of 100 in the 2015 Open Data Barometer (ODB), which measures the open data performance of governments around the world. The government has started addressing this and the Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) recently announced its objective of making Malaysia to be in the top 30 by 2020. This is achievable if we make more data available and accessible.”

“The federal government can lead the way by making this possible. And we would like to see state governments follow suit too. We can offer help by providing briefings, workshops and training sessions to federal and state legislators, local councilors and public servants at all levels.

“Governments which make use of open data have been able to improve their public service delivery, increase public trust, boost business innovation in the economy, increase regional and international credibility, and enhance citizen participation in important policy-making processes. Civil society involvement can also provide oversight over the implementation of projects.”

“Countries like Indonesia and the Philippines have already shown us this can be done. By adopting open data principles, we can improve the governance of of the Federal government as well as state governments.” concluded Tricia.



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