ESPPRA to Host Webinar on Open Contracting Data Standard


The Eswatini Public Procurement Regulatory Agency (ESPPRA) will on Monday February 12th, 2024 from 10:00 hrsthrough a webinar host Umrbek Allakulov, the Senior Data Support Manager at Open Contracting Partnership (OCP).

Allakulov will be presenting on Reporting on Public Procurement Using the Open Contracting Data Standard (OCDS).

The OCDS is a free, non-proprietary open data standard for public contracting, implemented by over 30 governments around the world. It describes how to publish data and documents about contracting processes for goods, works and services.

There are three concepts behind the OCDS:

  • Open Contracting is about publishing and using open, accessible and timely information on public contracting to engage citizens and businesses to fix problems and deliver results. These results include improving the efficiency, effectiveness and integrity of a public contracting system.
  • Open Data is data that can be freely used, modified, and shared by anyone for any purpose. This requires data to be accessible and machine-readable, and for permission to be granted for reuse.
  • Data Standard defines the structure and meaning of data in order to resolve ambiguity and help systems and people interpret it.

The OCDS builds on all three of these concepts, and the ultimate goal of the OCDS is to help deliveropen contracting using standardized open data. The OCDS describes how to publish data and documents for the procurement of goods, works, and services. It makes contracting data available for anyone to use, modify, and share, for any purpose.

The OCDS can be adapted to meet a country’s needs. Whether purchasing medicines, running a municipal recycling program or building an airport, the OCDS helps organize and publish all relevant data and documents during the process.

It is not an electronic procurement system or database, but it can inform how data is collected, stored and published in these systems. The OCDS can also help make sure that the contracting data collected and published meets global best practices and is fit-for-purpose to meet the needs of a range of different users.

The OCDS helps to increase transparency, enables deeper analysis of contracting data, and facilitates the use of data by a wide range of stakeholders. Academic research shows that improved openness and transparency is good for public integrity, value for money and competition when it is linked to systemic changes that allow people to use the information. More than 50 countries and cities, from Argentina to Zambia, are pursuing open contracting reforms to make public procurement fairer and more efficient.

To facilitate publication of contracting data to meet a variety of needs, the OCDS provides:

  • A common structured data model, including a schema, codelists, and common rules and definitions for data fields and contracting processes;
  • Guidance and tools to support implementation and data use;
  • An extension mechanism to add additional key information to your OCDS data; and
  • Free global support from the Data Support Team.

Umrbek is a Senior Data Support Manager and is responsible for helping OCP’s partners to take a data-driven approach to improve public procurement outcomes. He offers guidance on how to collect, structure, and use data to make better decisions and create a better user experience for procurement systems. In addition, Umrbek advises OCP partners on data digitization and publication.

Before joining OCP, Umrbek coordinated the research and evidence program of the Water Integrity Network with a focus on corruption, its impacts, and the efficacy of integrity programs in the global water sector. He has previously worked with the World Bank in Washington DC and GIZ in Uzbekistan. He also has experience in supporting a tech-start ups in data science and machine learning applications.

Umrbek is Certified Fraud Examiner and holds a Master’s degree in International and Development Economics from the University of Applied Sciences in Berlin. He is currently studying towards a degree in Computer Science. Umrbek is a recipient of numerous scholarships, including a Carlo Schmid Fellowship and a DAAD Scholarship for Development-Related Postgraduate Studies in Germany. He is passionate about innovative use of data science and AI to improve public sector governance.

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