Sneak-peek of Helen Owens’ prime ministerial keynote

By on 22 March, 2016


The Locate16 conference organising committee has released details of the keynote planned to be given Helen Owens, Principal Advisor, Public Data Policy at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Owens will present her keynote Building a World Class Public Data Infrastructure at the Locate16 Conference on Thursday 14 April.

The keynote will address how the change in Federal leadership in September 2015 led to the  reprioritisation of public data and digital government policy agendas.

This presentation will cover the key Commonwealth Government initiatives and announcements including:

  • the launch of the DataStart private-public partnership pilot program in November 2015;
  • the Public Sector Data Management Review which focussed on Australian Public Service practices and identified the current status and strategies for improving the use of and access to non-sensitive data;
  • the release of the Australian Government’s Public Data Policy Statement in December 2015 which formalises the Government’s commitment to open data and data-driven innovation;
  • the progress to deliver on ANZLIC’s Foundation Spatial Data Framework including the announcement of December 2015 to make the Geocoded National Address file (G-NAF) and Administrative Boundaries datasets openly available via from February 2016; and
  • the announcement to establish Data61 which will deliver world-leading data science applied research capability.

Helen Owens joined the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet as the Principal Advisor for Public Data Policy on 22 October 2015. Prior to this appointment, she was the Assistant Secretary, Data Policy in the Department of Communications and previously the General Manager of the Office of Spatial Policy in the Department of Industry. Helen is currently responsible for providing whole of government policy advice on the Australian Government’s public data strategy, data infrastructure, data in the economy, and digital government.

The Locate Conference is now in its 3rd year as the leading surveying and spatial industries event and is hosted by the Surveying and Spatial Sciences Institute (SSSI), Spatial Industries Business Association (SIBA) and Geospatial Information and Technology Association (GITA).

Registrations are still open for the Locate16 Conference, taking place 12-14 April at the Melbourne Convention Centre.


Name: Locate16

Time: Various

Date: 12-14 April 2016

Venue: Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre

Address: 1 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf VIC 3006

Cost (incl. GST): AU$1375, three day all inclusive; AU$660, one day pass

Event Website:



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