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Information Publication Scheme Agency Plan

May 2018


The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) is an agency subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) and is required to comply with the Information Publication Scheme (IPS) requirements. This agency plan describes how the OAIC proposes to do this, as required by s 8(1) of the FOI Act.

The OAIC is an independent statutory agency established by the Australian Information Commissioner Act 2010 (AIC Act) and is headed by the Australian Information Commissioner.

The Information Commissioner has oversight responsibilities in relation to the IPS under the FOI Act. These responsibilities are not covered in this plan. Instead, the Information Commissioner is generally referred to in his or her capacity as the head of the OAIC, and not in his or her regulatory capacity under the FOI Act.

The agency plan describes how the OAIC implements and administers its IPS entry in respect of its own information holdings, by addressing:

  • administration of the OAIC's IPS entry
  • information architecture
  • information required to be published
  • other information to be published
  • IPS compliance review.

The OAIC will continue to build and foster a culture within the agency, in which appropriate proactive disclosure of its information holdings is embraced. This recognises that public sector information is a national resource managed for public purposes.

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The purpose of this agency plan is to:

  • assist the OAIC in planning and administering its IPS entry
  • facilitate public consultation about that contribution
  • show what information the OAIC proposes to publish, how and to whom the information will be published and how the OAIC will otherwise comply with its IPS requirements (s 8(1)).

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The OAIC's objectives are to outline appropriate mechanisms and procedures to:

  • manage its IPS entry
  • proactively identify and publish all information required to be published (s 8(2))
  • proactively identify and publish any other information to be published (s 8(4))
  • review and ensure on a regular basis that information published as part of its IPS entry is accurate, up to date and complete (s 8B)
  • ensure that information published as part of its IPS entry is easily discoverable, understandable, machine-readable, re-useable and transformable
  • ensure satisfactory conformance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (Version 2) (WCAG 2.0)
  • measure the success of the OAIC's IPS entry by reference to community feedback and compliance review processes
  • adopt best practice initiatives in implementing and administering the OAIC's IPS entry.

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Administering the OAIC's IPS entry

The Deputy Commissioner is designated by the OAIC as the senior officer responsible for leading the OAIC's compliance with the IPS.

The Deputy Commissioner is supported by the OAIC’s Dispute Resolution Branch.

The OAIC has developed an information asset management framework which applies to the OAIC's IPS entry. This framework comprises records management plans and policies, including intellectual property and copyright.

The OAIC's ongoing compliance with the IPS is coordinated by the Deputy Commissioner.

Each branch of the OAIC is responsible, for the day-to-day tasks associated with complying with the IPS. For example, the Dispute Regulation branch will manage ongoing administration of the OAIC's IPS entry and will be responsible for implementing, reviewing and revising this plan.

The OAIC may charge a person for accessing any IPS document which it is impracticable to publish online:

  • at the lowest reasonable cost
  • to reimburse specific reproduction costs or other specific incidental costs (s 8D(4)).

The OAIC will generally not impose a charge where the reimbursement or incidental cost would be lower than $100.

The OAIC will publish on the IPS section of its website a list of any IPS documents that are impracticable to publish online and give details of how a person seeking access to any of these documents will be able to arrange access.

The list of documents will include indicative charges that may be imposed for making that information available and an explanation for the charge. These charges will be consistent with charges in the Freedom of Information (Charges) Regulations 1982 (which generally apply to access requests under Part III of the FOI Act). Annexure A lists the IPS documents which are not available online as at 7 May 2018.

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IPS information architecture

The IPS entry is published on the OAIC website ( under the following headings:

Required information

  • Agency plan (s 8(2)(a)
  • Who we are (ss 8(2)(b) and 8(2)(d))
  • What we do (ss 8(2)(c) and 8(2)(j))
  • Our reports and responses to Parliament (ss 8(2)(e) and 8(2)(h))
  • Routinely requested information and disclosure log (ss 8(2)(g) and 11C)
  • Consultation arrangements (s 8(2)(f))
  • Contact us (s 8(2)(i))

Other information

  • Our priorities (s 8(4))
  • Our finances (s 8(4))
  • Our lists (s 8(4))
  • Our submissions (s 8(4))
  • Our policies (s 8(4)).

To ensure that the OAIC IPS entry (and individual IPS documents) is easily discoverable, understandable and machine-readable, the OAIC:

  • publishes an IPS entry point on its website
  • applies appropriate metadata to online content (AGLS Metadata Standard AS 5044-2010)
  • wherever possible, provides online content in a format that can be searched, copied and transformed
  • has updated the sitemap on its website, to help individuals identify the location of information published under ss 8(2) and 8(4)
  • provides a search function for our website
  • provides an alert service to notify subscribers of new publications or other developments to the OAIC's IPS entry.

The OAIC will, so far as possible, make its IPS information holdings available for reuse on open licensing terms.

The OAIC will ensure, to the extent possible, that all documents available on its website conform to WCAG 2.0 AA. Where a person requires an alternative accessible format of a document, it will be made available on request.

The majority of documents listed on the IPS section of the OAIC website are published in HTML format to meet accessibility requirements. A small number of exceptions may apply to:

  • PDFs made of images of scanned documents
  • Documents that are out of date, but that are provided for historical reference (these will be supplied in the formats in which they are currently available)
  • Some charts, tables and forms (these can be supplied in accessible formats on request).

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Information required to be published under the IPS

The OAIC will publish documents required to be published under the IPS (s 8(2)) in the IPS section of the website at

The OAIC will publish these documents under the following headings:

Required information

Agency plan

Who we are

  • This will include the Agency Employment Agreement and information about statutory appointments.
  • For statutory appointees, the OAIC will publish the name of the person appointed, the length or term of appointment, the position to which the person is appointed (and particulars of the position) and the provision of the Act under which the person is appointed.

What we do

  • This will outline the functions and decision making powers of the Information Commissioner, Privacy Commissioner, and the Privacy Advisory Committee.
  • The OAIC will also publish rules, guidelines, practices and precedents relating to these functions and powers.

Our reports and responses to Parliament

  • This will include the OAIC's annual reports (from 2010–11) and the annual reports of the Information Commissioner’s activities in relation to eHealth/Digital Health from 2011-11, as tabled in Parliament.

Routinely requested information and disclosure log

  • This will include information in documents to which the OAIC routinely gives access in response to FOI requests and information published under s 11C of the FOI Act.

Consultation arrangements

  • This will include information about how and to whom a comment may be submitted by members of the public, where the OAIC undertakes public consultation on a specific policy proposal.

Contact us

  • This will include the name, telephone number and an email address for a contact officer, who can be contacted about access to the OAIC's information or documents under the FOI Act. The OAIC has established generic telephone numbers and email addresses for this purpose that will not change with staff movements.

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Other information to be published under the IPS

The OAIC will publish on its IPS other information that we hold (in addition to the information published under s 8(2)), taking into account the objects of the FOI Act (s 8(4)).

Other information will be published under the following headings:

Other information

Our priorities

  • This will include corporate and strategic plans, assessments and reviews.

Our finances

  • This will include financial information relating to pay and grading structures, procurement procedures, tendering and contracts.

Our lists

  • This will include the agency grants and appointments, and links to data sets.

Our submissions

  • This will include submissions made by the OAIC (and the OPC) to Parliamentary committees, the Productivity Commissioner, the Australian Law Reform Commission and other agencies.

Our policies

  • This will include relevant OAIC corporate policies.

In addition, in the IPS section the OAIC will publish a link to other publications not covered by these headings, including fact sheets, speeches and guidelines. A list of documents that are not practical to publish online will also be available.

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IPS compliance review

The OAIC will review and revise this agency plan annually to coincide with the OAIC's strategic planning process.

The OAIC will review the operation of its IPS from time to time and at least every five years, in accordance with the Guidelines issued by the Information Commissioner about IPS compliance review[1]. The OAIC will give consideration to the most appropriate way for its IPS entry to be reviewed in light of its oversight role.

The OAIC will adopt the following criteria for measuring its performance:

  • (a) agency plan has the OAIC published a comprehensive plan for its IPS compliance?
  • (b) Governance and administration does the OAIC have appropriate governance mechanisms in place to meet its IPS obligations, including a sound information management framework?
  • (c) IPS document holdings has the OAIC reviewed its document holdings to decide what information must be published under s 8(2) and information that can be published under s 8(4)? Is the OAIC's IPS entry accurate, up-to-date and complete?
  • (d) IPS information architecture does the OAIC have a publication framework in place and has it taken the necessary steps to ensure that information in its IPS entry is easily discoverable and accessible?

Agency compliance review does the OAIC have appropriate processes, systems and resources in place to monitor and review its IPS compliance and to make necessary improvements to its IPS implementation?

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Annexure A

Access charges for documents not available on the website

No.Document titleDateFormatCharges

Office of the Privacy Commissioner annual reports

1988, 1989, 1989, 1990, 1990, 1991, 1991, 1992, 1992, 1993, 1993, 1994, 1994, 1995, 1995, 1996, 1996, 1997


10 cents per page

Copy (other than photocopy)

$4.40 per page

Copy of the document in the form of a computer tape or a computer disk

An amount not exceeding the actual costs incurred by the OAIC in producing the copy

Copy of the document to be sent to the applicant by post or delivered to the applicant

An amount not exceeding the cost of postage or delivery

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[1] FOI Guidelines, Part 13.