Canada Unveils Initiative to Enable Standardization for Data Governance

Experts from industry, government, and civil society have set up a ‘Canadian Data Governance Standardization Collaborative’ with the objective of developing a roadmap for setting data standards. The initiative is expected to have an impact not only for Canada, but also for international partners. Anil Arora, the chief statistician for Canada stated that this new group would assist citizens and organizations to make the most from the data, without compromising on relevant privacy and security risks.

The body has been developed under the digital charter of the country, and was disclosed by the Innovation, Science and Economic Development department earlier in 2019. The group will be supervised by the Standards Council of Canada.

In addition to Mr. Arora, Philip Dawson, the co-chair for the steering board and lead for public policy at Element AI is supported by 4 working groups. The first of these study the foundations of data governance, the second scrutinizes data quality and collection methods and apparatus, the third studies data access, sharing, and retention, while the fourth studies data analytics and commercialization.

Responsible Data Use and Safety against Emerging Threats

At present, the working groups are scrutinizing case studies with the aim of outlining the landscape for standardization. This will involve recognizing gaps and priority areas in the scope of data governance, which can improve with standardization.

Mr. Arora spoke about this move: “As we head towards a data-driven future, these working groups are building something that is credible, trustworthy and transparent and that applies to all, so that we can maximize the responsible use of data and build trust between consumers and entities and between citizens and government.”

He also added “The technologies we’re using today are allowing for insights that we could never have achieved five or 10 years ago, so we have to be able to show the value proposition to Canadians through the responsible use of data. We absolutely have to earn citizens’ trust, be vigilant about the emerging threats and have processes, standards and systems in place that protect against these emerging threats.”