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Authentic and reliable data in the service of national public data asset

Gergely Palmai (), Szabolcs Csernyak () and Zoltan Eredelyi ()
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Gergely Palmai: head of regulation and administration, State Audit Office of Hungary
Szabolcs Csernyak: auditor, data protector officer, State Audit Office of Hungary
Zoltan Eredelyi: auditor, IT security officer, State Audit Office of Hungary

Public Finance Quarterly, 2021, vol. 66, issue 5, 52 - 67

Abstract: The analysis focused on how efficient management of the national data asset is supported by the Hungarian regulatory framework system concerning the use of public information, and whether public data constituting part of the national data asset can be deemed authentic and reliable to support the efforts for the digitalisation and artificial intelligence-based developments of the public sector. The analysis also referred to the audit experiences of the State Audit Office of Hungary (SAO), which emphasise the absence of authenticity and reliability of the audited data in several cases. The analysis shows why the availability of authentic and reliable data in terms of the national data asset has outstanding significance. In support of this assertion, it presents the different levels of data asset use, the role of using artificial intelligence in the public sector, and the significance, risks and challenges of the authenticity and reliability of public data, from both a data protection and a public finance aspect. Inaccuracy, unreliability of input data predestines the generation of incorrect result products (conclusion, decision), even if the appropriate algorithm is used, which could lead to direct financial loss, for both the citizens and the state. The authors of the analysis therefore suggest that a paradigm shift is necessary in the strategies targeting the efficient use of the public sector’s data, with the necessity to record the fundamental precondition that the national data asset must be based on reliable and authentic data.

Keywords: public sector; digitalisation; artificial intelligence; national data asset; efficient management; reliable and authentic data (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D73 D80 D81 D89 H41 H76 H89 K23 L38 L51 O33 O38 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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