[Answered] Highlight the significance of public data. Suggest some measures to improve the citizen’s access to data in India.

Public data is information that can be freely used, reused and redistributed by anyone with no existing local, national or international legal restrictions on access or usage.

Significance of public data:

  • Make Informed Decisions: Public data provide evidence for effective utilization of the resources and policy formations. It also helps to tackle corruption and better targeting of beneficiaries.
  • Role during pandemic: It was helpful to provide the technology for contact tracing around the current pandemic. It helped to identify hot spots and potential outbreaks of coronavirus.
  • Find Solutions to Problems: It allows govts to determine the cause of problems more effectively, by using data related to govt. departments, and systems.
  • Accountability: It is a tool for Citizens to hold governments accountable, provide feedback or share their concerns. For example, The Right to Information has been a useful instrument.


  • must encourage the adoption and development of robust data systems. This will require recruitment and capacity building of staff to improve the use of data for evidence-based decision making.
  • To strengthen trust among citizens, effective collaboration between governments and civil society is necessary. One of the most promising ways to do so is through Open Government Data.
  • Strengthening statistical agencies.
  • Implementation of Right to Information Act in letter and spirit.

Data can be a sensitive and controversial topic in recent times. When public data is being used transparently and for the greater good of society, it can be a powerful tool for creating positive change. Governments that are more open and transparent can act more effectively and efficiently and are thereby better respond to the needs of all citizens..


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