Data sharing among selected government institutions in Kenya
This research study aims at assessing the strategies put in place to encourage or enable data sharing among government institutions in Kenya a; establish the existence of data and information sharing and the factors affecting data/ information sharing among government institutions. Due to the emergence of new technologies and need for shared knowledge and information, this study is important to stimulate and improve data sharing among public institutions. This is a survey study conducted on a target population of 50 selected government institutions in Kenya with offices in Nairobi City County. Hard copy and online survey questionnaire was administered to the selected institutions, out of which 29 responses were received. Data collected include, general information (demographics), frequency of data/information sharing and the factors affecting data sharing among public government institutions in Kenya. Data analysis was done using descriptive statistics using SPSS analytical software. The study determined that majority of the institutions do have data/information governance policy and guidelines and that most them have a defined data or information sharing strategy, with majority of them frequently use electronic mail, website / online portal, media and meetings as ways of data sharing. The study also determined that the most institutions frequently used tables(spreadsheets);text format (doc, pdf) and that they have infrastructure/ICT tools to manage data sharing; with most of the primary data sources being field data collection and regular updates from collaborating partner institutions. The major challenges to most institutions are due to lack of clear policy, standards, communication protocol, incompatibility (interoperability issues) and data security. Data Sharing occurs more frequently on request and obligation. It is recommended that public institutions should ensure that appropriate data/information governance, policy and guidelines are developed to provide a common framework for best practice in data sharing. Institutions are also recommended to cooperate and partner with one another to stimulate data sharing and that there is need to make sure that data in their possession is easily available to other public/government institutions by improving infrastructure and embrace new technologies such as egovernment, KNSDI, and e-repositories. Moreover, capacity development is required to improve IT maturity levels for data and information sharing among government institutions.