Open Government Implementation Plan: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, 2015
Paru également en français sous le titre Plan de mise en œuvre pour un gouvernement ouvert : Agriculture et Agroalimentaire Canada
For more information, reach us at www.agr.gc.ca or call us toll-free 1-855-773-0241.
Prepared by Information Architecture Services within the Information Systems Branch (ISB), Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC).

Table of Contents

1. Executive Summary

Canada has a longstanding commitment to openness and accountability as a cornerstone of a strong, modern democracy. From the passing of access to information legislation over 30 years ago to current open government and proactive disclosure activities, the Government of Canada has worked to ensure transparency on federal operations to enable Canadians to hold their government accountable. The commitments included in Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16 will further progress on the delivery of transparent and accountable programs and services focused on the needs of Canadians.

The proactive release of data and information is the starting point for all other open government activity. Accordingly, the Government of Canada has firmly established an “open by default” position in its mandatory policy framework by issuing the Directive on Open Government.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) has been a key contributor to the Open Government initiative since its inception. AAFC is in a strong leadership position in the publication of Open Data which is one of the pillars contained in the Directive on Open Government. AAFC will be fully compliant with the requirements listed in the Directive for 2015, and this document contains the detailed steps through which AAFC will put in place the procedures and practices for sustainable compliance with the Directive.

Under the direction of AAFC’s Chief Information Officer (CIO), serving as the department’s Information Management Senior Official, AAFC is dedicated to fulfilling its requirements and commitments as stated in the Directive and the Action Plan. AAFC will address the requirements of the Directive; including: maximizing the release of open data and open information; ensuring open data and open information are released in accessible and reusable formats; establishing and maintaining inventories of data and information resources of business value; developing, implementing and updating a departmental Open Government Implementation Plan (OGIP); maximizing the removal of access restrictions on departmental information resources of enduring value; and ensuring that open government requirements are integrated in new plans for procuring, developing or modernizing departmental systems.

AAFC’s OGIP is aligned to the above requirements as well as the following commitments of the Action Plan, which include: Open Data including Open Data Canada and Open Data Core Commitment; Open Dialogue; and, Open Information including Open Contracting, Open Information Core Commitment, Open Information on Budgets and Expenditures, and Open Science.

AAFC is committed to maintaining compliance with the requirements of the Directive on Open Government through to 2020. The OGIP will be updated annually and document AAFC’s maintenance of full compliance with the expanded requirements as described in the stages listed in the Directive.

Although the implementation of the OGIP will be challenging, AAFC is determined to optimize the value and reusability of the AAFC data and information. This will be achieved by integrating open government obligations into service improvement, service modernization, and enabling technologies.

The next implementation plan will be published in . Performance measures will be used to gauge AAFC’s performance on implementation of the OGIP, as they relate to three key initiatives: implementation planning; establishing and maintaining comprehensive inventories of data and information resources of business value; and, maximizing the removal of access restrictions on departmental information resources of enduring value prior to transfer to Library and Archives Canada (LAC).

2. Approvals

Michel Lessard
Chief Information Officer
Information Systems Branch
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Date

 

Andrea Lyon
Deputy Minister
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Date

 

3. Purpose

This document describes AAFC’s plan to complete activities and deliverables aligned to the requirements of the Directive on Open Government, in order to achieve full compliance by the implementation deadline.

The objective of the Directive is to maximize the release of government information and data of business value to support transparency, accountability, citizen engagement, and socio-economic benefits through reuse, subject to applicable restrictions associated with privacy, confidentiality, and security (Directive on Open Government, Section 5.1).

The expected results of the Directive on Open Government (Section 5.2) are that Canadians are able to find and use Government of Canada information and data:

  • to support accountability;
  • to facilitate value-added analysis;
  • to drive socio-economic benefits through reuse; and,
  • to support meaningful engagement with their government.

This document also describes AAFC’s plan to complete activities and deliverables aligned to the commitments described in Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16, where AAFC is involved.

4. Context

The following sub-sections provide an overview of the department, and the challenges and opportunities that AAFC will experience in the course of executing the implementation plan.

4.1 AAFC’s Mandate, Vision and Mission

AAFC’s mandate is based upon the Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food Act. AAFC provides information, research and technology, and policies and programs to help Canada’s agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sectors compete in markets at home and abroad, manage risk and embrace innovation. The activities of the Department extend from the farmer to the consumer, from the farm to global markets, through all phases of sustainably producing, processing and marketing of agriculture and agri-food products. In this regard, and in recognition that agriculture is a shared jurisdiction, AAFC works closely with provincial and territorial governments.

AAFC’s vision is to drive innovation and ingenuity to build a world-leading agricultural and food economy for the benefit of all Canadians, and the mission is to provide leadership in the growth and development of a competitive, innovative and sustainable Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector.

AAFC has a strong regional presence with approximately 60% of our 4,537 employees working in regional offices, laboratories, research centers, and farms across the country.Footnote 1 There is even a small contingent of staff located around the world. AAFC also includes the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency, a special operating agency that regulates and supervises pari-mutuel betting on horse racing at racetracks across Canada, which is under the Corporate Management Branch.

4.2 AAFC’s Open Government Challenges

AAFC administers a broad suite of programs and leading edge research generating volumes of data and information resources that could be further exploited for innovation in competitive agricultural methods and industry advancement. While its data and information resources are subject to legal and policy compliance requirements, such as ownership, privacy, confidentiality, and security, AAFC has been actively working on open government efforts to release datasets regularly to the Government of Canada open government portal. However, there is still significant work required to ensure AAFC releases its data and information resources from its national offices, regional offices and research centres in high quality and open (machine-readable) formats.

Even though AAFC is adopting common Government of Canada technology standards and systems for managing “unstructured” information resources of business value (IRBVs), many of its "structured" data sets are held in multiple formats in multiple applications. Although AAFC recognizes the shift to “open by default” will be challenging, we are committed to open government and we will be achieving the objectives set out in the AAFC OGIP. Supporting the directive to maximize the release of open data and information resources will provide the opportunity for AAFC to pro-actively build open government requirements into new agreements, policies, processes and systems. Compliancy will also provide an opportunity to implement a common approach to maintenance and release of AAFC’s valuable data and information resources.

5. Outcomes

The following sub-sections describe AAFC’s contribution to Open Government and the outcomes that AAFC plans to address with the implementation of this OGIP.

5.1 AAFC’s Contribution to Open Government Outcomes

AAFC is participating in many aspects of Open Government and has taken on inter-departmental coordination roles to aid in facilitating Open Government activities. For example, AAFC is directly involved in the Open Government Directive Implementation Working Group, the Open Government Communications Network, and the Open Government Technical Working Group.

AAFC has been working to make raw data available in machine-readable formats to citizens, governments, not-for-profit and private sector organizations to leverage that data in innovative and value-added ways. This work has been strengthened with AAFC’s commitment to the Federal Geospatial Platform (FGP), which is connected to the Open Data Core Commitment of the Action Plan. The FGP initiative brings together the government’s geospatial data, allowing it to be easily accessed online, used, and integrated to create new forms of knowledge and analysis. AAFC is participating in consolidating the management of federal geospatial data across the Government of Canada to make this information more accessible and reusable.

AAFC is also contributing to open information obligations to ensure information is proactively released on an ongoing basis, making it more available to Canadians and easier to find. AAFC has been involved or will be involved in the following:

  • Open Contracting to improve the disclosure of contracting data;
  • Open Information Core Commitment to aid in modernizing access to information and privacy (ATIP) services, removing access restrictions on resources to be archived, and developing federal science library services;
  • Open Information on Budgets and Expenditures to provide Canadians with access to information and data on federal spending to help them understand, and hold government accountable for, the use of public monies; and,
  • Open Science to make sure the science performed and funded by AAFC can be used to benefit Canadians and strengthen the economy. It is connected to Open Data, Open Dialogue and Open Information. Open Science means being transparent, demonstrating value for public science and technology (S&T) investments and increasing the reach and impact of Canada’s world-class S&T and it implies better connections with key public and private stakeholders (as well as the general public) in order to make S&T results and data freely available and usable. AAFC is participating and engaging in the development and implementation of Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government Open Science commitments.

Open Dialogue is addressed by Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, and therefore the OGIP only acknowledges certain activities when applicable.

5.2 AAFC’s Outcomes

The following outcomes describe the desired state that AAFC is working to achieve, and the positive impact of achieving this desired state on the department, the Government of Canada, and Canadians:

  • Optimizing the value and reusability of the AAFC’s data and information;
  • Enhancing direct AAFC provision of services to Canadians (e.g., self-serve access to FGP data);
  • Directly and indirectly facilitating AAFC’s commitments to Open Science, Open Dialogue, and the FGP;
  • Supporting the development and implementation of related policy instruments through improved information sharing across all levels of government;
  • Optimizing the protection of AAFC’s data and information through increased awareness of ownership, privacy, confidentiality, and security considerations;
  • Supporting accountability by increasing the transparency of the AAFC’s decisions and decision-making processes;
  • Integrating open government obligations into service improvement, service modernization and enabling technologies; and,
  • Supporting the Blueprint 2020 guiding principles of:
    • An open and networked environment that engages citizens and partners for the public good; together with…
    • A whole-of-government approach that enhances service delivery and value for money; enabled by…
    • A modern workplace that makes smart use of new technologies to improve networking, access to data and customer service; and
    • A capable, confident and high-performing workforce that embraces new ways of working and mobilizing the diversity of talent to serve the country’s evolving needs.

6. Governance Structures and Decision Processes

This section describes the governance structures and decision processes that support open government and indicates how those responsibilities are delegated and fulfilled within AAFC.

6.1 Roles and Responsibilities – Deputy Head and Information Management Senior Official

The governance of the AAFC’s OGIP is informed by the responsibilities identified for the Information Management Senior Official and Deputy Head in the Directive on Open Government. The following table describes their roles and responsibilities.

Table 1: Roles and Responsibilities of the Deputy Head and the Information Management Senior Official
Position Role Responsibilities
Deputy Minister Deputy Head
  • Approve AAFC’s OGIP
  • Provide commitment to Open Government Directive
  • Respond to any significant difficulties, gaps in performance or compliance issues
  • In instances of non-compliance, deputy heads are responsible for taking corrective measures within their organization with those responsible for implementing the requirements of this directive
Chief Information Officer (CIO) Information Management Senior Official
  • Oversee the implementation and monitoring of the Directive on Open Government at AAFC
  • Work with key stakeholders, including heads of communications, chief information officers (CIOs), departmental security officers (DSOs), data owners, functional specialists, and access to information and privacy coordinators to ensure the implementation of the directive
  • Bring to the deputy head’s attention any significant difficulties, gaps in performance or compliance issues, and develop proposals to address them
  • Ensure that corrective actions are taken to address instances of non-compliance. Corrective actions can include additional training, changes to procedures and systems, and other measures as appropriate
  • Report any performance or compliance issues to the Chief Information Officer Branch of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
  • Provide final approval for data and information release, and approve AAFC’s OGIP

6.1.1 Governance Structure for OGIP Development

The governance structure for the OGIP is shown below in Figure 1. The requirements and commitments of the Directive on Open Government, the Open Government Action Plan, and the Management Accountability Framework (MAF) are examined each year for the development and update of the implementation plan. The representatives of the branches, who are mainly members of the AAFC Open Government Working Group, are consulted, which provides updates to AAFC’s commitments to Open Government. The implementation plan is drafted and it is approved with the Information Systems Branch’s senior management and the Information Management Senior Official. It is then presented for consultation to Director General’s Management Committee (DGMC) and Departmental Management Committee (DMC) before final approval from the Information Management Senior Official and the Deputy Minister. The implementation plan is then published with TBS.

Please note that the Action Plan commitments in the OGIP will evolve as they will correspond with the current Action Plan for the applicable year. The current Action Plan applied is the Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16.

Figure [01]: Governance processes involved in the annual review cycle for the OGIP
Figure [01] - Text version

From top to bottom:

  • Inputs:
    • Action Plan on Open Government – Commitments
    • Directive on Open Government – Requirements
  • Yearly Cycle:
    • Consult Branches and Open Government Working Group
    • Derive AAFC Commitments
    • Draft Open Government Implementation Plan
    • Consult with senior management in Information Systems Branch
    • Consult with Director General’s Management Committee
    • Consult with Departmental Management Committee
    • Information Management Senior Official Approval
    • Deputy Minister Approval
    • AAFC Open Government Implementation Plan
    • To TBS

6.2 Roles and Responsibilities – Key Stakeholders

To successfully meet the requirements for open government, departmental stakeholders have been identified. Table 2 provides details on the general roles and responsibilities that the AAFC branches deliver for the Open Government initiatives. All branches have a role in responsibilities towards Open Government commitments. The definitions for the roles are provided in Annex A.

Table 2: General Roles and Responsibilities of AAFC Branches
Branches Roles Responsibilities
All branches
  • Business Owner
  • Data Steward
  • Provide, maintain and validate the data and information resources for the inventories including providing bilingual metadata to describe the resources
  • Aid in the release of data and information resources including providing resources in an accessible and usable format and helping to evaluate criteria with which to determine release approval and priority
  • Support open government requirements in the integration of any new plans for procuring, developing or modernizing departmental applications or systems
  • Representative for Open Government
  • Provide a representative(s) that attends the AAFC Open Government Working Group meetings
  • Coordinate within branch to aid Information Systems Branch in identifying Data Stewards, Business Owners and/or other subject matter experts when applicable

Table 3 describes the specific roles and responsibilities for certain branches within AAFC.

Table 3: Specific Roles and Responsibilities of AAFC Branches
Branches Roles Responsibilities
Corporate Management Branch
  • Departmental coordinator pertaining to Proactive DisclosureFootnote 2 and other functional areas of responsibility
  • Official Languages Functional Specialist
  • Coordinate open government initiatives pertaining to functional areas of responsibility
  • Provide guidance to the department on Official Languages Act obligations with regards to the information being published through the open government initiative
Information Systems Branch
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • IM Functional Specialist
  • IT Functional Specialist
  • Security Functional Specialist
  • Lead AAFC’s open government initiative
  • Chair the AAFC Open Government Working Group
  • Lead the development, publishing, implementing, and monitoring of a departmental OGIP
  • Coordinate the building of an inventory of applicable resources as described in the Directive on Open Government and coordinate the release of resources through shared portals such as open.canada.ca.
  • Review and assess data and information resources to be released under Open Government for potential risks
  • Maximize the removal of access restrictions from information resources of enduring value
  • Review information and data resources ready for disposition
  • Support the implementation of the Web Renewal Initiative (WRI)
  • Harvest the data and information resources that will be provided to the Open Government Portal
  • Support applicable portfolio partners with their requirements to the Directive
Legal Services
  • Legal Functional Specialist
  • Provide advice to AAFC on the legal requirements and related risks
  • Provide legal guidance on AAFC’s internal release process
Public Affairs Branch
  • Access to Information and Privacy Functional Specialist
  • Communications Functional Specialist
  • Under the Open Dialogue Stream: lead in the implementation of the Consulting Canadians commitment (social media and Web 2.0, the Consulting Canadians website), and support the implementation of Open Regulation
  • Lead, in collaboration with ISB, the implementation of the Web Renewal Initiative (WRI)
  • Provide guidance to the department on access to information and privacy act obligations with regards to the information being published though the open government initiative
  • Support the transition from a Crown Copyright request process toward an Open Government License model
  • Provide communications support for the activities of the Working Group and the implementation of the departmental Open Government Implementation Plan (OGIP) through the preparation of a communication/ education strategy
  • Represent AAFC on the TBS Open Government Communications Network
  • Review and assess data and information resources to be released under Open Government when a potential risk (privacy, confidentiality, etc.) is identified
Science and Technology Branch
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
Leads AAFC’s Open Science initiatives
  • Act as the primary communication channel for open science between AAFC and other Science-based Departments and Agencies, and as the central point of contact internally for open science
  • Participate in interdepartmental working groups representing AAFC’s open science requirements
  • Lead consultation within the department about the standards and guidelines on the management and release of scientific data and publications
  • Participate in the publishing, and implementation, of an interdepartmental open science Implementation Plan
Lead AAFC’s Geospatial Data initiatives
  • Act as the primary communication channel for geospatial data between AAFC and other departments and agencies, and as the central point of contact internally for geospatial data
  • Develop processes and procedures for creating data and metadata and for publishing geospatial data
  • Participate in the development of the FGP
  • Create map and image services, move data to download directories and publish geospatial data, services and applications to the Open Government Portal

6.2.1 AAFC Governance for Open Government

The following table provides the committees directly involved in the governance processes at AAFC for Open Government.

Table 4: Responsibilities of Governance Committees in the Open Government Initiative
Committees Responsibilities
Departmental Management Committee (DMC)
  • Serves as an executive forum to discuss and/or take decision on departmental management and operational issues
  • Chaired by the Deputy Minister
Director General’s Management Committee (DGMC)
  • Facilitates the participation of AAFC branches in the implementation of the Directive on Open Government and the commitments on the Open Government Action Plan
  • Provides oversight from an operational perspective
  • Co-chaired by AAFC’s Director Generals
AAFC Open Government Working Group
  • Co-ordinates the creation and ongoing updates of the AAFC Open Government Implementation Plan
  • Serves as a vehicle for briefings, idea sharing and coordination of events and products within AAFC
  • Facilitates alignment of AAFC’s activities to the Open Government initiatives
  • Coordinates AAFC communications on Open Government including promoting awareness of Open Government within the department
  • Identifies any Open Government issues that need to be escalated to Information Systems Branch’s senior management or DGMC
  • Reports on progress to DGMC semi-annually, and to the department’s Assistant Deputy Ministers as required
  • Chaired by the Departmental Open Government Coordinator

Both the Departmental Management Committee and the Director General’s Management Committee provide guidance and direction to the AAFC Open Government Working Group, and the Open Government Working Group provides information and recommendations to the senior management committees.

6.3 Communication, Awareness, and Engagement

A low-profile proactive communications approach is recommended for this initiative.

Internally, AAFC will use a variety of internal communications tools, such as the employee newsletter, the intranet, and presentations to management tables to communicate to employees on important milestones, significant events and training, as well as interesting new postings related to agricultural content on Canada.ca and the Open Government portal.

Externally, AAFC will use a variety of external communications tools, such as AAFC online (external), information booths at agricultural shows and fairs, Twitter, and features on Canada.ca to communicate on important milestones and significant events, as well as interesting new postings related to agricultural content on Canada.ca and the Open Government portal. A notice will also be posted on AAFC online informing visitors that our content is being migrated to Canada.ca.

7. Planning Tables

The planning tables in this section outline the key deliverables required for achieving full compliance with the Directive within the five year implementation time frame as well as delivering on AAFC’s commitments to Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-2016. Performance measures will be used to gauge AAFC’s performance beginning in Year 2 as they relate to:

  • Implementation planning;
  • Establishing and maintaining comprehensive inventories of data and information resources of business value; and,
  • Maximizing the removal of access restrictions on departmental information resources of enduring value prior to transfer to LAC.

In the planning tables, DOG stands for Directive on Open Government requirement, APOG stands for Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government commitment, FTE for Full-Time Equivalent and NPO for Non-Pay Operational.

7.1 Key Assumptions

While creating this OGIP, certain assumptions were made, namely:

  • As the OGIP is annually updated as dictated by TBS, more details would be provided (e.g., resource estimates);
  • Timelines initially established may change contingent on other dependencies;
  • Financial and Human Resources stated are estimates and not commitments;
  • Financial and Human Resources estimates would be refined as the implementation moves forward as the scope and effort will be better recognized;
  • The leads provided in the planning tables A and B would state the leads within AAFC regardless of whether or not the deliverable is being led government-wide by Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat or another department;
  • The lead branches would provide the coordination role, however input would still be required from other branches for many of the deliverables;
  • The activities provided in the planning tables A and B would be coordinated with each branch representative who would identify the business owners, data stewards and/or other subject matter experts when applicable;
  • TBS holds the responsibility for defining the performance measurements and reporting on Open Government outcomes; and,
  • Open Dialogue is addressed by the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada and is largely out-of-scope of this OGIP.

7.2 Planning Table A – Directive on Open Government Requirements

The following table provides the key deliverables for the Directive on Open Government requirements.

Table A: Deliverables for the Directive on Open Government requirements
Reference Compliance Requirements Deliverables / Milestones Lead(s)Footnote 3 Activities Start Date End Date ResourcesFootnote 4, Footnote 5(Human and Financial) Status
DOG 6.1 Maximizing the release of Government of Canada data and information under an open and unrestrictive license designated by the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat AAFC’s Data Release Plan Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Develop and maintain release criteria
Develop and maintain AAFC’s Data Release Plan
Obtain approval of the plan
HR: 0.12 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialist
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
AAFC’s Information Release Plan Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Develop and maintain release criteria
Develop and maintain AAFC’s Information Release Plan
Obtain approval of the plan
HR: 0.06 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialists
Not Started
DOG 6.2 Ensuring that open data and open information is released in accessible and reusable formats via Government of Canada websites and services designated by the TBS Listing of accessible and reusable formats (for data and information) to be used at AAFC Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Identify all accessible and reusable formats to be used
Develop and maintain quality guidelines and standards for open data and information
HR: 0.09 FTE
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
Conversion process(es) for data identified for release whose native format is not accessible and reusable Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Establish and approve conversion process(es) to be used
Develop and maintain quality guidelines and standards for open data and information
HR: 0.36 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
Conversion process(es) for information identified for release whose native format is not accessible and reusable Information Systems Branch Science and Technology Branch Establish and approve conversion process(es) to be used
Develop and maintain quality guidelines and standards for open data and information
HR: 0.33 FTE
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
Release process to support the publication of AAFC’s data Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Determine the release process workflow
Develop and maintain Release Guide
Develop and maintain Release Checklist(s) based on checklist provided by TBS
HR: 0.36 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
Release process to support the publication of AAFC’s information Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Determine the release process workflow
Develop and maintain Release Guide
Develop and maintain Release Checklist(s) based on checklist provided by TBS
HR: 0.26 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
DOG 6.3 Establishing and maintaining comprehensive inventories of data and information resources of business value held by the department to determine their eligibility and priority, and to plan for their effective release Methodology for establishing a data inventory Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Develop draft methodology
Validate methodology with other related functional specialists
HR: 0.06 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
Completed
Methodology for establishing an information inventory Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Develop draft methodology
Validate methodology with other related functional specialists
HR: 0.30 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
In Progress
Data inventory (detailed, itemized list(s) that describes the volume, scope, and complexity of the data held by AAFC) Information Systems Branch Develop data inventory template using the Data Inventory Template provided by TBS
Complete initial inventory using the data inventory template based on known data
Engage branch representatives, data stewards and others to validate the inventory
HR: 0.98 FTE
  • Business Owners
  • Data Stewards
  • Geospatial Data Librarians
  • IM Functional Specialists
  • Representatives for Open Government
Capital: $100,000
In Progress
Science and Technology Branch Develop and complete data inventory HR: 2.78 FTE
  • Business Owners
  • Data Stewards
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
In Progress
Information inventory (detailed, itemized list(s) that describes the volume, scope, and complexity of the information held by AAFC) Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Develop information inventory template using the Information Inventory Template provided by TBS
Complete initial inventory using the information inventory template based on known information
Engage branch representatives, business owners and others to validate the inventory
HR: 7.08 FTE
  • Business Owners
  • Data Stewards
  • IM Functional Specialists
  • Representatives for Open Government
Capital: $100,000
In Progress
Renewal processes to maintain the currency of AAFC’s data inventory Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Develop renewal process workflow
Integrate updates of data inventory into business processes
HR: 0.15 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialist
Not Started
Renewal processes to maintain the currency of AAFC’s information inventory Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Develop renewal process workflow
Integrate updates of information inventory into business processes
HR: 0.12 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialists
Not Started
Assets included in the data inventory are evaluated to determine their eligibility and priority for release Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Complete analysis of priorities
Evaluate assets to determine their eligibility and priority for release
HR: 0.20 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
Not Started
Assets included in the information inventory are evaluated to determine their eligibility and priority for release Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Complete analysis of priorities
Evaluate assets to determine their eligibility and priority for release
HR: 0.14 FTE
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
Not Started
DOG 6.4 Developing, posting to the designated website, implementing, and annually updating a departmental Open Government Implementation Plan Governance structures are in place to oversee the implementation of AAFC’s OGIP Information Systems Branch Plan and implement governance structure for open government Develop departmental Open Government Working Group Feb 2014 HR: 0.03 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
Completed
AAFC’s OGIP Information Systems Branch Develop AAFC’s implementation plan
Consult and engage Branch representatives for feedback and information
HR: 0.12 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • IM Functional Specialist
  • Representatives for Open Government
Completed
Signatures in section 2 (Approvals) of AAFC’s OGIP Information Systems Branch Obtain approval of AAFC’s OGIP HR: 0.02 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
Completed
AAFC’s OGIP staffed and funded Information Systems Branch Staff and fund OGIP activities HR: 0.25 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
In Progress
Monitoring and reporting processes for assessing progress and maintaining the currency of AAFC’s OGIP Information Systems Branch Develop process to monitor and report
Implement process
HR: 0.05 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
Not Started
AAFC’s first annual update to the OGIP Information Systems Branch Update plan
Consult and engage Branch representatives for feedback and information
Receive approval for plan
HR: 0.23 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • IM Functional Specialist
  • Representatives for Open Government
Not Started
AAFC’s second annual update to the OGIP Information Systems Branch Update plan
Consult and engage Branch representatives for feedback and information
Receive approval for plan
HR: 0.23 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • IM Functional Specialist
  • Representatives for Open Government
Not Started
AAFC’s third annual update to the OGIP Information Systems Branch Update plan
Consult and engage Branch representatives for feedback and information
Receive approval for plan
HR: 0.23 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • IM Functional Specialist
  • Representatives for Open Government
Not Started
AAFC’s fourth annual update to the OGIP Information Systems Branch Update plan
Consult and engage Branch representatives for feedback and information
Receive approval for plan
HR: 0.23 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • IM Functional Specialist
  • Representatives for Open Government
Not Started
DOG 6.5 Maximizing the removal of access restrictions on departmental information resources of enduring value prior to transfer to Library and Archives Canada (LAC) Methodology for the removal of access restrictions from data and information resources of enduring value prior to their transfer to the LAC Information Systems Branch Develop methodology based on information provided by TBS and LAC HR: 0.25 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialist
Not Started
Methodology for the removal of access restrictions from data and information resources of enduring value prior to their transfer to the LAC is integrated into AAFC’s disposition plans and procedures Information Systems Branch Implement methodology into AAFC’s disposition plans and procedures HR: 0.25 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialist
Not Started
DOG 6.6 Ensuring that open government requirements in sections 6.1 to 6.5 of this directive are integrated in any new plans for procuring, developing, or modernizing departmental information applications, systems, or solutions in support of the delivery of programs and services Governance structures are in place to ensure that the requirements of the Directive on Open Government are integrated into any new plans for procuring, developing, or modernizing departmental information applications, systems, or solutions Information Systems Branch Integrate open government into governance structures
Ensure open government requirements are supported, understood and considered by current committees
HR: 0.25 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
In Progress
Directive on Open Government requirements are integrated into AAFC’s procurement process(es) for applications, systems, and solutions Information Systems Branch Integrate open government requirements into existing IT procurement processes Analyze solutions to ensure they meet open government requirements HR: 0.25 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialist
In Progress
Directive on Open Government requirements are integrated into AAFC’s development process(es) for applications, systems, and solutions Information Systems Branch Ensure open government requirements incorporated in project plans and IT development processes Analyze solutions to ensure they meet open government requirements HR: 0.25 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialist
In Progress
Directive on Open Government requirements are integrated into AAFC’s modernizing process(es) for applications, systems, and solutions Information Systems Branch Ensure open government requirements incorporated in project and strategic plans
Analyze solutions to ensure they meet open government requirements
HR: 0.25 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialist
In Progress
DOG 7.1 Departmental information management senior officials, as designated by the deputy heads, are responsible for overseeing the implementation and monitoring of this directive in their department. Performance framework for the monitoring of AAFC’s progress against the activities and deliverables/milestones in the OGIP Information Systems Branch Develop process for monitoring AAFC’s progress
Monitor progress regularly
HR: 0.25 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
In Progress
Progress against the activities and deliverables in the OGIP is regularly reported to the governance structures in place to oversee the implementation Information Systems Branch Develop progress reports Report regularly to governance committees on progress HR: 0.25 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
In Progress
Performance framework for the monitoring of AAFC’s ongoing compliance to the requirements of the Directive Information Systems Branch Plan compliance management Monitor compliance regularly HR: 0.25 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
In Progress
Process to ensure significant difficulties, gaps in performance, or compliance issues are reported to the Deputy Head (DH) Information Systems Branch Develop process to report performance issues Report any performance or compliance issues HR: 0.5 FTE
  • Departmental Open Government Coordinator
  • Information Management Senior Official
In Progress

7.3 Planning Table B – Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government Commitments

The following table provides the key deliverables for Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-2016 Commitments.

Table B: Deliverables for Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16 Commitments
Reference(s) Compliance Requirements Deliverables / Milestones Lead(s)Footnote 6 Activities Start Date End Date ResourcesFootnote 7,Footnote 8,Footnote 9(Human and Financial) Status
APOG B1 The Government of Canada will work with provinces, territories, and municipalities to break down barriers to integrated, pan-Canadian open data services through the establishment of common principles, standards, and licensing across all levels of government. Establish or identify common open data standards (e.g., metadata, data formats) that align with existing international standards for adoption by governments across Canada Information Systems Branch
Science and Technology Branch
Provide feedback into standards developed HR: 1.25 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
  • IM Functional Specialists
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
Expand and deliver a national appathon event, the Canadian Open Data Experience (CODE), to promote access to, and reuse of, multi-jurisdictional data to develop new and innovative tools and services for Canadians Information Systems Branch Provide support for CODE by releasing data that is requested Ensure datasets available during CODE HR: 0.25 FTE
  • IT Functional Specialist
NPO: $9,999
In Progress
APOG B4 The Government of Canada will continue to unlock the potential of open data through a series of innovative and forward-looking projects that drive government-wide progress on open data and prioritize easy access to high-value federal data. Consolidate the management of federal geospatial data across the Government of Canada to make this information more accessible and reusable via federal open government websites Science and Technology Branch Work with the Federal Geospatial Platform on the management of geospatial data 2014 2017 HR: $1,289,000
  • Geospatial Data Librarians
Capital: $500,000
In Progress
APOG C1 The Government of Canada will maximize access to federally funded scientific research to encourage greater collaboration and engagement with the scientific community, the private sector, and the public. Develop and publish a government-wide Open Science Implementation Plan with specific activities and milestones Science and Technology Branch Contribute to the development of government-wide Open Science Implementation Plan HR: 0.11 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinators
Completed
Support and contribute to Open Science Implementation Plan activities led by other departments 2015 HR: 0.03 FTEFootnote 10
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
In Progress
Lead in the creation of a licensing checklist tool to evaluate publisher’s license against the Open Government License, including drafting principles for exceptions 2015 HR: 0.82 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinators
In Progress
Establish an online service to enable a one-stop search for publications and data resulting from federal scientific activities Science and Technology Branch Contribute AAFC requirements and data 2015 HR: 0.1 FTE
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
Not Started
Develop inventories of federal scientific data and initiate the public release of data Science and Technology Branch Develop inventories of AAFC scientific data 2015 HR: 0 FTEFootnote 11
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
In Progress
Initiate the public release of AAFC data HR: 0.15 FTEFootnote 12
  • Geospatial Data Librarian
Not Started
Publish and maintain a consolidated online list of peer-reviewed articles by Government of Canada scientists dating back to 2012 Science and Technology Branch Publish and maintain a consolidated online list of peer-reviewed articles by AAFC scientists dating back to 2012 2015 HR: 0 FTEFootnote 13
  • Departmental Open Science Coordinator
Completed
APOG C3 The Government of Canada will coordinate single-window access to a broad range of open contracting information from across federal departments Release data on all contracts over $10,000 via a centralized, machine-readable database available to the public, and increase level of detail disclosed Corporate Management Branch Continue release of data on contracts over $10,000, and coordinate with TBS and PWGSC on consolidation efforts for contracting data 2015 HR: TBD
  • Departmental coordinator pertaining to Proactive DisclosureFootnote 14 and other functional areas of responsibility
In progress
Increase the level of detail disclosed on government contracts over $10,000 2015 HR: TBD
  • Departmental coordinator pertaining to Proactive DisclosureFootnote 15 and other functional areas of responsibility
Not Started
APOG C4 The Government of Canada will publish expanded information and data on federal spending to help Canadians understand, and hold government accountable for, the use of public monies Ensure budget and expenditure information is provided following a standardized procedure Corporate Management Branch Participate in release of expenditure data and information following procedures set by TBS 2015 HR: TBD
  • Departmental coordinator pertaining to Proactive DisclosureFootnote 16 and other functional areas of responsibility
In progress
APOG C6 The Government of Canada will expand the proactive release of information on government activities, programs, policies, and services, making information easier to find, access, and use. Modernize the administration of Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) services across the federal government Public Affairs Branch Review and assess data and information resources to be released under Open Government when a potential risk (privacy, confidentiality, etc.) is identified 2015 HR: 1.25 FTE
  • Access to Information and Privacy Functional Specialists
Capital: $20,000
In Progress
Increase Canadians’ access to federal records by removing access restrictions on archived federal documents held by Library and Archives Canada Information Systems Branch Integrated methodology into AAFC’s disposition plans and procedures HR: 0 FTEFootnote 17
  • IM Functional Specialist
Not Started
Develop and pilot a single online discovery and access platform for federal science library services and collections Information Systems Branch Aid in developing federal science library services 2014 2017 HR: 5.94 FTE
  • IM Functional Specialists
Capital: $600,000
In Progress
APOG D The Government of Canada will provide direction and next-generation tools and resources to enable federal departments and agencies to consult more broadly with citizens and civil society in support of the development and delivery of government policies and programs. Consultations Tool Guide produced and posted two years ago for all AAFC employees delivering consultations to encourage best practices.  To be updated in 2015-16 Public Affairs Branch Public Affairs Branch posts to the Consulting Canadians website all consultations undertaken by the Department which have a web presence [currently, if the consultation has no web presence, it cannot be posted.  This is being addressed in the new iteration that Privy Council Office (PCO) is working on] 2015 HR: 0.01 FTE
  • Communications Functional Specialist
In Progress
Departmental Community of Practice (Cop) established to share latest updates on tools like the Consulting Canadians website and to share information on best practices Public Affairs Branch CoP meets quarterly. PCO Senior Policy Officer, Consultations presented an update this past year. 2015 HR: 0.05 FTE
  • Communications Functional Specialist
In Progress
Template developed to report all consultations Public Affairs Branch Template is updated quarterly by Branches to ensure a better tracking system is in place for consultations. 2015 HR: 0.05 FTE
  • Communications Functional Specialist
In Progress

8. Conclusion

AAFC is in a strong position with respect to Directive on Open Government and Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16 in support of the delivery of transparent and accountable programs and services focused on the needs of Canadians. AAFC’s OGIP (i.e., this document) contains the detailed steps through which each branch within AAFC will put in place the policies, procedures and practices for sustainable compliance with the mandatory Directive on Open Government.

AAFC will maintain compliance with the requirements of the Directive on Open Government through 2020. The OGIP will be updated annually and document AAFC’s maintenance of full compliance with the expanded requirements as described in the stages listed in the Directive.

AAFC will face challenges during the implementation of the OGIP including addressing aging applications and resource constraints. However, AAFC is determined to optimize the value and reusability of the AAFC data and information. This will be achieved by integrating open government obligations into service improvement, service modernization, and enabling technologies.

Annex A – Glossary of Roles

The following provides the definition of each of the roles in the context of Open Government and as used in Section 6.2.

Table 5: Definition of the Roles in the Department
Role Definition
Access to Information and Privacy Functional Specialist An employee who carries out roles and responsibilities that require knowledge, skills and attributes in access to information and/or privacy concerns.
Business Owner Providers of the authoritative version of the data and information resources.
Communications Functional Specialist An employee who carries out roles and responsibilities that require knowledge, skills and attributes for strategic and operational communications support.
Data Steward Business leader or recognized subject matter expert designated for the responsibilities of data governance.
Departmental Coordinator pertaining to Proactive Disclosure and other functional areas of responsibility Liaison responsible for mobilizing the department in meeting the Open Contracting, Budget and Expenditures deliverables.
Departmental Open Government Coordinator Manager responsible for mobilizing the department in meeting the Open Government deliverables.
Departmental Open Science Coordinator Liaison responsible for mobilizing the department in meeting the specific Open Science deliverables.
Deputy Head Head of AAFC accountable to the Minister and through the Minister to Parliament for all institution activities and for achievement of institution results.
Geospatial Data Librarian Advises Data Stewards and performs quality control and assurance activities, in addition to performing data archiving, data assessment, data purging and data retrieval for geospatial data.
Information Management (IM) Functional Specialist An employee who carries out roles and responsibilities that require knowledge, skills and attributes for one or more of the information management disciplines that support the effective and efficient management of information.
Information Management Senior Official Delegated authority for Open Government at AAFC.
Information Technology (IT) Functional Specialist An employee who carries out roles and responsibilities that require knowledge, skills and attributes for information systems and technology infrastructure.
Legal Functional Specialist Official legal advisor to the department on all matters of law connected with AAFC’s operations.
Official Languages Functional Specialist An employee whose roles and responsibilities include knowledge, skills and experience in providing advice on the application of Official Languages policies.
Representative for Open Government An employee standing for the interests of their branch in the Open Government Initiative.
Security Functional Specialist IT Security advisor to the department on the sensitivity of data and information resources.

Annex B – Glossary of Terms

Blueprint 2020
Articulates a vision for a world-class Public Service equipped to serve Canada and Canadians, now and in the future (Ref: Clerk of the Privy Council).
Federal Geospatial Platform
A collaborative online environment consisting of authoritative geospatial data, services, and applications, built on a shared infrastructure that will enable the government’s most relevant information to be managed spatially, analyzed, and displayed in a visual context to enhance decision-making support of government priorities (Ref: Natural Resources Canada http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/earth-sciences/geomatics/canadas-spatial-data-infrastructure/geospatial-communities/federal).
Geospatial Data
Data with implicit or explicit reference to a location relative to the Earth (Ref: ISO 19109).
Information Resource of Business Value (IRBV)
Are published and unpublished materials, regardless of medium or form, that are created or acquired because they enable and document decision-making in support of programs, services and ongoing operations, and support departmental reporting, performance and accountability requirements (Ref: Directive on Recordkeeping).
Open Contracting
It is the practice of disclosing information on contracts (Ref: Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16).
Open Data
Structured data that is machine-readable, freely shared, used and built on without restrictions (Ref: Directive on Open Government).
Open Data Core Commitment
It is the practice of driving the proactive release of open data to increase government transparency, drive innovation, and maximize Canadians’ potential reuse of federal data (Ref: Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16).
Open Dialogue
It is the practice that enhances the availability of data and information to inform active civic participation, and encourages and enables departments and agencies to regularly consult with Canadian citizens and civil society organizations (Ref: Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16).
Open Government
A governing culture that holds that the public has the right to access the documents and proceedings of government to allow for greater openness, accountability, and engagement (Ref: Directive on Open Government).
Open Information
Unstructured information that is freely shared without restrictions (Ref: Directive on Open Government).
Open Information Core Commitment
It is the practice of expanding the proactive release of information on government activities, programs, policies, and services, making information easier to find, access, and use (Ref: Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16).
Open Information on Budgets and Expenditures
It is the practice of publishing expanded information and data on federal spending to help Canadians understand, and hold government accountable for, the use of public monies (Ref: Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16).
Open Science
It is the practice of providing access to federally funded scientific research to encourage greater collaboration and engagement with the scientific community, the private sector, and the public (Ref: Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16).
Portfolio Partner
Agriculture and Agri-Food portfolio includes the following organizations: Canada Agricultural Review Tribunal, Canadian Dairy Commission, Canadian Grain Commission, Farm Credit Canada, and Farm Products Council of Canada.
Structured Information
Digital information residing in fixed fields within a repository (Ref: Directive on Open Government).
Unstructured Information
Digital information that is often created in free-form text using common desktop applications such as e-mail, word-processing, or presentation applications (Ref: Directive on Open Government).

Annex C – References

Clerk of the Privy Council. Blueprint 2020: A Vision for Canada’s Federal Public Service. 2015. Web. .

Government of Canada. Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16. 2014. Web. .

International Organization for Standardization (ISO). ISO 19109:2005 Geographic information – Rules for application schema. Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization.

Natural Resources Canada. The Federal Geospatial Platform. 2014. Web. .

Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat. Directive on Open Government. 2014. Web. .

Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat. Directive on Recordkeeping. 2011. Web. .