Skip to content

Data content standardisation

Across government we want to use data more efficiently and effectively to make better choices and provide quick, effortless, and smart services to New Zealanders.

Improving data content standardisation practices among government organisations will mean that we are better able to meet the growing expectations of New Zealanders.

Data collected across government has not been designed consistently or managed with all-of-government needs in mind. This means when we try to share data (for multiple reasons and only where permitted and safe to do so) it can be very difficult to do.

Data content standardisation aims to provide a reliable and consistent basis for the New Zealand data system to:

  • maximise the value of data
  • create a more complete view to inform government policy and investment decisions
  • enable information sharing and reconciling the data faster and more efficiently.

What is data content standardisation? 

Government data content standardisation

As the functional lead for data, the Government Chief Data Steward (GCDS) is working across government to co-design, develop, and implement short data content standardisation, tapping into specialised expertise. The GCDS has the authority to set mandatory requirements across government.

Government Chief Data Steward

Co-designing requirements across government

Once approved, data content requirements are mandatory for New Zealand government organisations that share electronic data containing the data concept in the data content standard. (Government organisations refers to the State sector Public Service departments and departmental organisations as specified in schedules 1 and 1A of the State Sector Act 1988.)

The government data content standardisation design process also provides opportunities to improve connections across government organisations and increase knowledge about common data problems.

Register of government data content requirements

Data content requirements are developed for prioritised data concepts. Where possible, existing standards are used as the basis for each requirement.

Figure 1: Overview of data content standardisation elements.

Contact us

If you would like to know more, please email


Last updated 30 April 2020