Scientific data underpins all aspects of the FSANZ evidence-based approach and is transverse across all of our work. It is essential that FSANZ is able to generate, discover and appropriately access the data required to support decision-making, and that we have the capability to appropriately analyse, synthesise and interpret these data. A central repository of information and assessment tools for easy access by staff to build and maintain expertise are essential in the modern environment.
The Australian government recognises the importance of sharing data to increase its value through efficient collection, use and re-use and is putting in place open data policies to facilitate safe release and sharing of datasets where appropriate. The benefits of sharing data between organisations are being realised. We need to be able to facilitate and maximise the flow of data between ourselves and our stakeholders to not only enable a swift response to incidents but also to help predict and evaluate risks from a whole of system perspective.
We have recognised the importance of data and data science across all science streams, through the development of a FSANZ Strategic Plan for Scientific Data. To date the focus has been on cataloguing the data holdings of FSANZ and establishing processes for consistently managing our existing and new data holdings. As good data management practices become embedded in our business, our focus is now shifting to building relationships and improving capabilities that allow us to capitalise on the benefits of accessing, sharing and using a broad range of quality data. This recognises that we have limited resources or authority to generate relevant scientific data ourselves and that we must position ourselves as a trusted custodian of other people's data and information.