Implementing a National Data Strategy: The Need for Innovative Public Consultations

CIGI Policy Brief No. 142

October 23, 2018

There are a number of challenges involved in developing a national data strategy, including diverse competing interests, which make public consultations a necessary part of the process. The public consultation process used in the development of Brazil’s Marco Civil da Internet legislation (Internet Bill of Rights) could be used as a model for governments looking to adopt a data strategy. Interviews with academics, policy makers, industry officials and civil society activists in Brazil involved in developing Marco Civil suggest that it enjoys a high degree of legitimacy, attributed, in part, to the open and transparent consultation process. Data-strategy consultations should be undertaken within a human-rights framework, involve transparent, two-stage consultations, designed by nonpartisan and impartial policy experts, and include a decisive role for legislators.

About the Authors

Natasha Tusikov is an associate professor of criminology in the Department of Social Science at York University and a visiting fellow with the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet) at the Australian National University.

Blayne Haggart is a CIGI senior fellow and associate professor of political science at Brock University in St. Catharines, Canada. His latest book, with Natasha Tusikov, is The New Knowledge: Information, Data and the Remaking of Global Power.