Have your say on the development of uniform metrics on the use of FOI laws in Australia

July 26, 2017 - 1:57pm

In December 2016, the Australian government submitted its first Open Government National Action Plan to the Open Government Partnership (OGP).

Commitment 3.2 of Australia’s first OGP Plan promotes the importance of better measuring and improving our understanding of the public exercising their rights under freedom of information laws.

Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments produce statistics about applications to access government information. However, as the data collected is not uniform across jurisdictions, it makes it difficult to compare and analyse how freedom of information rights are used across the country. The data also varies in its consistency with other international measurements of open government such as the World Justice Project's Open Government Index.

Australian Information Commissioners and Ombudsmen, within the remit of each of their jurisdictions and led by NSW, have agreed on six proposed metrics on Public Use of Freedom of Information Access Rights:

  • Type of applicant
  • Application rates per capita
  • Release rates
  • Timeliness
  • Review rates

You can access more information about the metrics here. We note that the Queensland Government does not currently collect some of the data in this form.

You are invited to give your views on the proposed metrics by completing a short survey, available here.

The survey closes on 9 August 2017.

A summary of the feedback received will be prepared and placed on the IPC website (www.ipc.nsw.gov.au). You can also nominate to receive the summary by providing your contact details.