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Thursday May 11, 2023

Time to talk data: Join us for the Australian Government Data Forum

  • Time to talk data: Join us for the Australian Government Data Forum image

On 17 May, the Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA) ACT will be hosting the Australian Government Data Forum, in partnership with the Graduate Data Network (GDN), the Office of the National Data Commissioner (ONDC)the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), and APS Data Profession. In this Q&A, National Data Commissioner Gayle Milnes, who will also act as a compere at the forum, talks about the critical role of protecting data in today’s complex digital environment, and why attending the Australian Government Data Forum could be the ideal opportunity to build your data literacy and skills.

Why is the effective use of data so important for governments nowadays? 

Data is one of the significant currencies of today’s world. Australian government agencies are the custodians of a valuable national asset – data. My role is to oversee a best practice scheme for sharing safely data collected by Australian government agencies. By realising the full value of public data, we can deliver better outcomes for Australians – better government policies, programs and services, as well as research and innovation.

Over the course of your career, how have data and technology regulation and governance changed within the APS?

With so much more data available, it’s more important than ever to have a complete and up to date data inventory so you can best utilise and protect the data your agency holds. My office has a team of data experts available to work with you on this.

Cyber threats are constant and evolving. So, protecting the data you hold with the right privacy, cyber and other security settings is critical, utilising resources such as the Protective Security Policy Framework, the Information Security Manual, the essential 8 and other widely recognised security standards.

What do you recommend public servants do to build their data literacy and skills? 

Come to the Australian Government Data Forum – Pathways, Perspective and Practice! Join the APS Data Profession. If you are a graduate, join the Graduate Data Network. Dive in – seek out a data and digital project you can work on or look for ways you can add a data and digital dimension to the work you are doing.

Which session or speaker are you most excited to hear from at the forum? 

It’s too difficult to choose! We’ve got a great line-up of data experts and leaders from across government, academia and the private sector. I am very excited about our showcases which are deep dives into some of today’s most critical issues, including Australia’s national data disability asset and delivering better services for people with disability and how First Nations data can improve outcomes when it comes to closing the gap, plus the role of AI in our society and workplaces

Register for the forum here.

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