Open Contracting Data Standard 1.1 Upgrade Process

17 Jun 2016

Por Tim Davies

Version 1.0 of the Open Contracting Data Standard (OCDS) was launched in November 2014. Over the last 18 months countries, cities and civil society groups across the world have worked on adopting OCDS, and as a community we’ve been learning even more about the kinds of structured disclosures of information that can increase understanding and engagement around the whole contracting process.

OCDS is an open standard, which means it is open to periodic update and revision through an open governance process. The governance document here (and summarised in the image below) describes the process to be used for the upgrade from version 1.0 to 1.1.

We manage the upgrade process through a GitHub issue tracker. This works similar to a forum where there are discussion threads for particular topics. It is free to create a GitHub account and participate, and you can then subscribe to ‘Watch’ for new issues, and can respond to issues via e-mail.

Next step: proposal cut-off – 6th July

To start the 1.1 process, as of today 17th June we are announcing an upcoming cut-off date for new proposals of Wednesday 6th July. This means that if you want to guarantee that a substantive issue is addressed in this upgrade process, you should create an issue for it before that date.

After 6th July we will produce a prioritised list of topics for the 1.1 upgrade, and will share this for a period of community review.

Existing issues

You can check if your issue is already being addressed by searching the issue list.

Over the last few weeks we have reviewed over 100 existing issues, to identify key themes emerging.

If you think an issue is particularly important, or you have insights to add, please do add a comment to the relevant discussion thread. You can also use the reactions button in GitHub to add your support to a proposal (+1), or to reject an idea (-1).

During prioritisation, community engagement with an issue will be a key factor in deciding whether it should be considered during 1.1

Summary by stage

We have organised issues in this Huboard which provides a visual presentation of whether issues are:

  • In the backlog: there is not yet a clear course of action to progress this issue;
  • In discussion: these are issues that would benefit from wider contributions from the community to identify a way forward;
  • Being developed as clear proposals which can be considered for inclusion in the upgrade;
  • Ready for changes to be made to the schema – either where they are a bug-fix, or where there appears to be consensus around a proposal;
  • In development where the schema or document updated are actively happening at the moment;
  • In review where schema or document updates are currently being tested;

Thematic summary

We have clustered those issues we have currently in the tracker with a clear thematic focus as below. Each line links to associated GitHub issues where the current problems and proposals can be discussed. These clusters will be reviewed at the prioritisation stage after 1st July.

  • Taxes
    • Capturing structured information on taxes in values 112
  • Organisation and contact details
    • Representing consortiums or multiple suppliers for a single award 142
    • Representing government parties other than buyer and procuringEntity 150 156 264 275
    • Allowing multiple contact points (additionalContactPoint vs. contactPoint as an array)  266
    • Adding country code to address  270
    • Classifying organisations (e.g. size, type etc.) 269 181
  • Planning and projects
    • Relating multiple tenders to a single planning process 72
    • Relating contracting processes to external project identifiers 130
  • Budgets
    • Capturing multi-year budgets and contracts 222 293
  • Procurement Type
    • Introduce a classification of procurement type 204
  • Lots
    • Handling contracts divided into lots 236
  • Units
    • Improving the classification of units of measure 145 177
    • Handling exchange rates in values 270
  • Information on bids and assessment
    • Capture information on the number of bidders, including disqualified bidders and eligible/non-eligible bidders  141
    • Capture details on each bidder  197
    • Provide structured tender criteria, and collect structured information from bidders (using ‘Features’ extension) 223 36 140
  • Framework contracts
    • Handling frameworks with a mini-competition stage 233
  • Assessment and review information
    • Capture complaint information  38 205
  • Subcontracting
    • Capturing sub-contracting information and contracting process relationships 144
  • Contract extension and renewal
    • Capturing contract maximum extension and review dates 179 200
    • Linking contracts nearing expiry with the process for procuring their replacements 184
  • Linked data
    • Developing an ontology and JSON-LD rendering of OCDS 190 40
  • Language and definitions
    • Clarify definition of tenderer  337

Looking ahead: process overview & timeline

The governance document here sets out the minimum time periods for key stages of the upgrade process. At present, we anticipate:

  • Proposals closed – 6th July 2016
  • Prioritisation – by 22nd July 2016
  • Review of priorities – by 5th August 2016
  • Development of worked up proposals – by 30th September 2016
  • Peer-review stage – October/November 2016
  • Final revisions and review – December 2016

With delivery of the 1.1 version of OCDS by the end of 2016.

No plans have yet been made for the 1.2 upgrade process, and any such process would respond to community demand, but would be very unlikely to take place earlier than Q3 2017.