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A generic provenance framework to document public policy making processes

Javed, Barkha

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Barkha Javed


Public policies impact the day to day activities of individuals. Effective public policy outcomes result in general acceptance among the community. The transparency in policy making process and participation during policy creation holds significant positions for developing trust among the community. Established domains such as e-health employs provenance for creating transparency and trust among the researchers. Public policy making can also use provenance to develop trust and transparency in their processes. At present, however, public policy makers employ various means to manage public policy making. Having no unified platform for the policy making process presents challenges in respect of searching and locating the evidence that was used during policy creation and for ensuring trust and transparency among actors. The absence of such a support also presents challenges for participation in public policy making. To address the given challenges, this research presents the provenance framework that manages the public policy making provenance data and enable participation of diverse actors.
Due to dynamicity attached to public policy making, a provenance framework needs to be adaptable. Therefore, a model-driven approach has been used to frame the public policy making provenance framework. In addition to a model-driven approach, a mechanism is required that can enable the capture of public policy processes. However, the knowledge-intensive dynamics of public policy making presents challenges for using process-based solutions. Therefore, this research work describes a process-agnostic approach inspired from a network-based packet switching approach for tracking policy making processes. Managing public policy provenance data is not the only facet that develops trust. What is required is the facilitation of citizens and non-government bodies in the policy creation process. Therefore, a provenance framework has been designed by considering the principles of smart governance which results in a smart cities solution. In order to evaluate the framework, a proof-of-concept has been designed and implemented. An evaluation has been carried out to determine the suitability of a model-driven and a process-agnostic approach for policy making provenance framework in smart cities. For the evaluation purposes, three public policy making case studies Shops Opening Hours’ Resolution, Air Quality Monitoring, and Neighbourhood Planning were employed. The three case studies were used to derive various experiments to test the provenance framework. The experiments captured the dynamic and knowledge-intensive aspects of the provenance framework. The results collected from the execution of the experiments demonstrated the aptness of a process-agnostic approach and model-driven approach for the policy making provenance framework. Lastly, an end user evaluation was carried out to assess the effectiveness of the provenance framework. The positive responses of end users showed the usefulness of the provenance framework.


Javed, B. A generic provenance framework to document public policy making processes. (Thesis). University of the West of England. Retrieved from

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Dec 4, 2019
Publicly Available Date Apr 30, 2021
Keywords Model-driven Approach, Process-agnostic, Public Policy making, Provenance, Smart Cities
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