A Citizen's Perspective on Public Sector Information

Bargmann, Monika and Pfeifer, Gerald and Piwinger, Boris . A Citizen's Perspective on Public Sector Information., 2004 In: Public sector information in the digital age : between markets, public management and citizens' rights. Edward Elgar, pp. 255-274. [Book chapter]


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English abstract

Within ten years of the World Wide Web, the Internet has become the most obvious symbol of the information and communication society. Although information management does not solely depend on computers (as several millennia of humankind prove), an ever-increasing amount of information of every kind is stored and processed these days and has become increasingly accessible following the rise of the Internet. Information products constitute an important market, and demand is rising continuously. People want to be able to access information quickly, easily and without having to argue why and for which purpose they need it. On the other hand, they want their personal data to be well protected. VIBE!AT (the Austrian Association for Internet Users, a non-governmental organization) has been looking into civil informational rights from a citizen's perspective over the years and derived three main features which we regard as necessary for public sector information (PSI) systems: openness, accessibility, and privacy/data protection. Openness means that all PSI is publicly available unless explicitly classified non-public, not vice versa. Further, it means that the data can be accessed without hindrance and fear. Accessibility means that the information can be easily found, retrieved and used, and that it is affordable. Privacy and data protection, finally, guarantee that no private details become public and that you "know who knows something about you". This also includes the right of informational self-determination, that is, the right to control who stores and/or passes on your personal details. We will initially describe these three main features and subsequently illustrate them using the Austrian legal information system "RIS" (RechtsInformationsSystem) as an example.

Item type: Book chapter
Keywords: public sector information, access, freedom of information, legal information, PSI, government information
Subjects: B. Information use and sociology of information. > BC. Information in society.
B. Information use and sociology of information. > BF. Information policy
L. Information technology and library technology. > LC. Internet, including WWW.
Depositing user: Monika Bargmann
Date deposited: 02 Jul 2007
Last modified: 14 Dec 2012 18:36
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10760/6563


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