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GovHack 2017

Submitted on Friday, 28th July - 5.44.

This weekend about a thousand people all over the country will spend their weekend at GovHack. They will come together to push the boundaries of the intersection between government, technology, and the civic imagination. They do this so that we can imagine alternative ways to tackle social, political and economic problems.

Civic ‘hack’ events are predicated on the assumption that those who are impacted by government decisions have the right to participate in the activity of governments and influence these decisions. To encourage this we strive to share resources in increasingly meaningful ways and to foster a culture where all participants dictate the terms around which they contribute.

Hack events are places of learning. People who participate do so for a number of reasons, many of these have something to do with personal and professional development and they then carry these skills into their day jobs and into areas beyond the ‘event’ itself.

If we think about what an event like GovHack means we should acknowledge the commitment and dedication of those who host, participate, volunteer and sponsor. For all of us it’s the long term impacts that will make the most difference.

By considering to extent to which we’re trying to make technology civic or make civics technological or both at the same time, we might be able to challenge the conventions of hack events themselves and assign priority to activity over outcome, function over prototype and demonstrable outcomes over novelty factor.

So Gov Hacker’s, we offer you the following provocations:

  • Do we start with data or stories?
  • What happens when we bring together our social conscience and design sensibilities?
  • Who is the end and ultimate user of the things we pitch?
  • What is the true utility of the thing we pitch?

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Budget Hack 2017 - Reimagining the Budget

Submitted on Friday, 30th June - 7.58.

Civic hack events are a means fostering public and industry engagement with a common goal of improving the way things work in government. At hack events participants are doing things quickly, learning new skills, transferring knowledge and doing good for society. Participating in Hack events can give people an outlet for skills that they might not get to use in their everyday life or they can contribute to self-development, networking and making friends.

In thinking about our second Budget Hack we began with the question: How can the community make a balanced assessment of the state budget and how it effects them? As part of this effort we partnered with Code for Australia, and the Melbourne chapter of the Open Knowledge Foundation to create a forum for community involvement in making sense of and communicating the budget and its impacts.

We tried to explore how different people from different points of view set the agenda for discussions on what the budget means and how governments could foster greater dialogue and knowledge sharing. By inviting the community into the process of telling the ongoing stories about what’s being spent and how that’s happening we create the opportunity to bring together work with members of the community with a range of concerns, skills, and experiences.

The Challenges we Issued

The budget is traditionally viewed as a standalone thing. One way we feel that interfacing that data with different sources that can be used in conjunction with other data sources (e.g. ABS, AURIN, Hansard, the National Film and Sound Archive) to imagine new problems, issues and implications of budget decisions and express these ideas in ways that make sense to ordinary Victorians.

We issued challenges around four themes: simplification and visualisation; equity, equality and gender; infrastructure, housing, urban and regional issues;, and rethinking data in terms of its form, the stories it tells, and the ways in which budget data can be combined with other sources. Participants were encouraged to think about the types of stories that data could tell and how we might use our social conscience in ways that can bring together financial data, technology, information design and story-telling for the benefit of the community.

The Winners

iTreasurer - aimed to change the way the government and Victorians interact around the budget. Through an interactive interface, it educates Victorians about the current budget, and allows them to participate in the next one by nominating which areas they would like spending to be prioritised.

Project Smash - helps First Home Owners understand the impact of the 2017/18 budget measures on their lives and provides them with relevant data visuals to guide people seeking to explore the factors surrounding the issue owning your first home.

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GovHack 2016- better understanding the factors that will reduce family violence

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 8.10.
This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The Challenge

How might we use the information from the Family Violence Royal Commission submissions to better understand the factors that will reduce family violence?

Family violence is the most pervasive form of violence of violence perpetrated against women in Victoria. The causes of family violence are complex.  Preventing and responding to family violence is a shared responsibility across the community

The Royal Commisison into Family Violence delievered its report to the Victorian Government in March 2016. The report contains over 200 recommendations.

The Royal Commission received a wider range of submissions from a diverse range of people  including from individuals, service providers, local MPs.

These submissions along with other inputs were used by the Royal Commission to form their recommendations. DPC is interested in seeing this information utilised in the wider discussions around prevention of family violence.

The objective of this challenge to is to find ways of expanding the reach of these submissions and helping to gain better understanding of factors that will reduce family violenc

What are we attempting to achieve?

The purpose of this challenge is to discover mechanisms to utilise  the information that was provided in the submissions to the Royal Commission and make it more accessible for use in the reduction of family violence
There are over 1000 submissions, it is recommended that teams undertaking this challenge pick a small number of submissions and think about models for using the information.

Featured data

Submissions to the Royal Commission into Family Violence

Crime Statistics Agency Data Tables - Family incidents

Links to related  information
The Victorian Government’s response

Challenge owner

Department of Premier and Cabinet


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GovHack 2016- Journey Planning

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 8.06.

This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The challenge

How do I discover travel options that suit my needs (choice before travelling)

Victoria is growing at a rapid pace and is currently undertaking many significant infrastructure projects to improve the flow of traffic and Public transport.  Access, timeliness, effectiveness and ease of use of transportation options are important to quality of life.

VicRoads and PTV are committed to improving travel conditions for Victorians and providing safe and reliable journeys, this includes enabling travel choice that integrate all modes and options.

Teams should consider:

  • Factors will impact selected travel choice (knowing what could influence my plans whilst travelling)
  • Choice of mode (train, tram, bus, bicycle, motor vehicle)
  • Choice of route ( eg: scenic routes, environmentally friendly route, less crash-prone route, fastest route etc)
  • Costs associated with travel
  • Integrated travel mode (e.g car and train)Shared transport  (e.g car pooling, uber etc)

What are we attempting to achieve?

Create a seamlessly coordination of travel information, that will empower travellers to have greater choice, and an increase in reliability and predictability of journeys across multiple modes of travel.

Feature Data


PTV timetable API

Train Station bike storage

Tram Stops

Train Stations

Vic Map Bike path

Crashes last five years

Heavy vehicle

Speed zones

Bridge structures on freeways arterial roads

Principal Bicycle Network

Strategic Cycling Corridor

Traffic Signals

Traffic Volume for Freeways and Arterial Roads

Challenge owner

This is a joint challenge from PTV and VicRoads

Public Transport Victoria (PTV) aims to improve public transport in Victoria by ensuring better coordination between modes, facilitating expansions to the network, auditing public transport assets, promoting public transport as an alternative to the car.
VicRoads plans, develops and manages the arterial road network and delivers road safety initiatives and customer focused registration and licensing services. VicRoads aims to help provide Victorians with safe and easy connections to the people and places that matter most to them.

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GovHack 2016- Victoria’s national parks

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 8.03.
This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The Challenge

How might we improve discovery of Victoria’s national parks, what they have to offer and enhance  the experiences of visitors?

Victoira has 45 national parks, 26 state parks,13 marine national parks,11 marine sanctuaries,3 wilderness parks,30 metropolitan parks,60 other parks (including regional and reservoir parkmore than 2,700 natural features and conservation reserves
more than 11,000 formally registered Aboriginal cultural heritage places, more than 2,500 non-Indigenous historic places
Victoria’s parks offer a wide range of potential experiences; walking, exercise, camping, mountain bike riding, climbing and the list goes on. But how do people find these experiences. How do people find the park that suits them?

What are we attempting to achieve?

We want to find  wa to encourage people to get outdoors and experience Victoria’s amazing parks system and  to promote Victoria’s parks and get people out into them. What are the barriers that are preventing people visiting a National Park and how can we remove them?

Feature Data

Parks Victoria Campgrounds and Huts - Wilsons Promontory

Victorian SubTidal Reef Monitoring Program

Parks Victoria Campground and Huts


Emergency Management Victoria Fire Danger Ratings Real Time Data

Emergency Management Victoria Fire Ban Real Time Data

Emergency Management Victoria Victorian Emergency Real Time Data

Challenge owner

Parks Victoria

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GovHack 2016- Wilsons Promontory

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 7.59.
This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The Challenge

How might we create a more interactive experience for visitors to Wilsons Promontory

We would like to enhance the experience of park users at Wilsons Promontory and create opportunities for visitors to share their experiences of the park to inspire other visitors.

We want to encourage people online to get offline. How can we help people get the very best experience from their visit to Wilsons Promontory?

This may include:

  • Sharing seasonal sightings of terrestrial and marine species – (whales through winter, orchids and wildflowers in Spring, birds in summer, historical photos etc.

  • Habitat monitoring information for park managers

  • Information (or a tour) on the amazing underwater marine habitat in the Marine National Park

  • What would I expect to see when in the park in any given month?

  • What can I do in the park if I have a couple of hours, half a day, a day, a few days, an extended trip?

  • Which walks/activities are best to do if I have small children, elderly relatives, use a wheelchair, are vision impaired, an experienced hiker, visiting in winter, visiting on a very hot or windy day, etc.?

  • What is the topography of the walk/activity I plan to do – how difficult will it be, what will I see?

  • What are the accommodation options and costs? How do I book?

  • How can I minimise my impact on the environment? How can I give back to the park?

  • How can I be safe whilst exploring the park?

  • Are there any organised activities happening in the park when I plan to visit?

  • Where is the nearest fuel supply, supermarket, restaurant, etc.?

  • How can I engage with the park? PokemonGo with real world critters?

What are we attempting to achieve?

Increasing the level of interaction by visitors through documenting and reporting their experiences and sightings could greatly assist park managers in habitat monitoring and assist in the education of a wider visitor audience of the unique values of the park.

Increasing the availability of information available to visitors, pre-visit and in-park, to help them plan their experience could reduce the demand on visitor centre staff in peak season. It would also mean that more visitors are aware of the diverse experiences available to them in the park, their responsibilities (e.g. no dogs, no walking off track, etc.) and how to stay safe.

Featured Data

Parks Victoria Campgrounds and Huts - Wilsons Promontory


Wilsons Prom Elevation Model with Aerial Imagery

Wilsons Prom Marine National Park - Multimedia

Victorian SubTidal Reef Monitoring Program

Great Trails Victoria - Wilsons Promontory Southern Circuit


Challenge owner

Parks Victoria. 

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GovHack 2016- Victorian War Heritage Inventory

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 7.54.

This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The Challenge

How might we make the  Victorian War Heritage Inventory more accessible an interactive?

We want the community to feel ownership over the information and the overall story of Victoria’s experience of war and its aftermath

The Inventory is the record of physical war heritage across Victoria (war memorials, honour rolls, significant sites etc.),
The Inventory exists as a dataset. The information contained within the Inventory to be rich and of value to the community.
The Inventory attracts interest from a variety of community members particularly researchers, students, historians, planners and tourists - to their heritage and history.

What are we attempting to achieve?

The aim of this challenge is to improve the accessibility to the Inventory by the public, so the community can:

  • access to the information,

  • can contribute new content and records,

  • can determine what information should be included

  • share their stories of significant war heritage in the State.

Data links

Victorian war heritage inventory

Victorian Heritage database

Challenge owner

Veterans Affairs -Department of Premier & Cabinet


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GovHack 2016- How might we find ways of unlocking value in data without compromising privacy?

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 7.50.

This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The Challenge

How might we find ways of unlocking value in data without compromising privacy

The Victorian Government recognises the benefits from enabling public access to government data. But however valuable it may be, not all government data is suitable for release.

For example, government agencies such as Births, Deaths and Marriages Victoria (BDM) hold a wealth of data that is extremely valuable, but also extremely private.

This challenge is about finding new ways to unlock some of that value without exposing sensitive personal information.

One way that this might be done is through de-identification - the release of a modified dataset stripped of any identifying information. But de-identification is hard, and always carries a risk that the data can be combined with other public information sources to re-identify the underlying individuals.

 Another approach might be to design a system that lets people explore or visualise the data in such a way that information about individuals can never be accessed. Maybe you can think of other approaches.

 BDM has provided a set of 'dummy data' for you to play with. We want you to come up with innovative new ways for BDM to open up their data to the public without compromising Victorians' privacy.

What are we attempting to achieve?

Developing options to  de identification would enable the unlocking of the value of the data we have and provide meaningful data for analysis, e.g. it would be great to be able to provide various councils with data that provides an overview of the number of babies born to parents living in a particular postcode. This may help inform a strategy around day care centres, or schools etc. It would provide for better planning and ensuring the right resources are located in the right areas.  This could also be achieved with using marriages data or deaths data. We could then proactively package these offerings and go to local councils and provide them with this data

Featured data

Sample births data

Important information

What is Privacy

Challenge owner

Births Deaths and Marriage and  Commissioner for Privacy and Data Protection


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GovHack 2016- Vicmap Features of Interest

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 7.46.

This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The Challenge

How might we expand use of the Vicmap Features of Interest to enable easy locatation of facilities?

The aim of this challenge is to enable the  community to access the wealth of information available through the Vicmap Features of Interests data set.

Vicmap Features of Interest provides a dynamic database of features and sub features and a feature catalogue has been developed to complement this database.

It includes features such as education centres,community venues, care & emergency facilities power lines,power facilities,locality points,towers and landmarks.

Key customers are utilities, a broad variety of business, government departments and agencies and the emergency services.

What are we attempting to achieve?

Doing this well will unlock the data that is held in the Features of Interest data to enhance the lives of Victorians and visitors to Victorians.

Case study 1: Assists with infrastructure planning
Planners designing the community needs for services such as lifesaving clubs, aquatic centres, maternal and child-care centres, scout camps, etc can use Features of Interest overlaid over the Imagery, Transport, Property and Address Vicmap products. This can be mixed with council, utility, census data such as population, ethnicity, education, family, income, labour force, and dwelling characteristics to best locate and administer each service.

Case study 2: Linking your business intelligence with the community

A large publishing house of educational text books will use the schools ‘education centre’ feature to link to individual schools, their location and population. This spatial relationship will aid ordering of these books. This can also be linked with other business information to assist logistics including delivery, routing, invoicing and follow up with each school.

Featured Data

Vicmap-Features of Interest

Challenge owner

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning


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GovHack 2016- Track and quantify the flows of waste

Submitted on Wednesday, 27th July - 7.35.

This is a challenge for GovHack 2016. Entry details on  Hackerspace from 7.00pm Friday 29  July 2016

The Challenge

How might we use data to better track and quantify the flows of waste and enable better planning and investment?

As Victoria's population increases, there is greater need to minimise and better manage our waste to create more sustainable communities.
Mapping and quantifying the flows of waste data would provide evidence for forecasting and planning future infrastructure needs for the state.
Industry, local and state government would find this particularly useful given the state infrastructure plan’s purpose and its influence on determining future waste facilities in Victoria. 

What are we attempting to achieve?

We would like to see an increase in resource recovery in Victoria rather than waste to landfill and be able to demonstrate evidence to support planning of landfill alternatives.

Currently 60% of waste in landfill is organic materials which represents an economic and environmental loss however, a massive opportunity in the future for better resource management, new industries, jobs and improved environmental outcomes.
We would like to better understand:
  • The flow of waste between waste regions / local governments and the quantities generated and managed in each region and whether there is adequate future infrastructure available to deal with the waste / resources.
  • The visual flow of waste over time will enable better planning for future landfill sites;
  • The composition of waste generated in each waste region / council to enable better economies of scale when considering recycling options and facility locations for industry;
  • This information and understanding could inform better waste management in the state.
  • An example of future outcomes of this work could be that rather than landfilling valuable materials e.g. organic matter (green and food waste) that is high in nutrients and energy, we could be using this waste to create new markets (e.g. compost and waste to energy facilities) and support better organic waste management facilities.

Featured Data

We have excellent time series data but we need to be able to exploit the valuable information contained in it to plan better for future infrastructure needs of Victoria while reducing GHG and making better use of our valuable resources.

Organics Recovery in Victoria 2013-14 (part of the Victorian recycling industry annual survey 2013-14)

Rubber Recovery in Victoria 2013-14 (part of the Victorian recycling industry annual survey 2013-14)

Aggregates Mansory Soils Recovery in Victoria 2013-14

Metal Recovery in Victoria 2013-14(part of the Victorian recycling industry annual survey 2013-14)

Plastics Recovery in Victoria 2013-14(part of the Victorian recycling industry annual survey 2013-14)

Victorian Recycling Industry Annual Survey 2013-14

Paper and Cardboard Recovery in Victoria 2013-14

Victorian Local Government Annual Survey 2013-14

LCA Kerbside Recycling Calculator

Glass Recovery in Victoria 2013-14(part of the Victorian recycling industry annual survey 2013-14)

Challenge owner

Sustainability Victoria and Department of Environment Land Water and Planning



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