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Technical Interoperability Standards

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The National Interoperability Framework (Royal Decree 4/2010) establishes the development of a series of Technical Interoperability Standards which must be applied by Public Administrations (P.A.s). These Standards (Interoperability Agreements) describe specific aspects needed to facilitate practical and operational aspects of interoperability. They are published in the Official Gazette and they are available at the Portal Administracion Electronica (PAE) <http://administracionelectronica.gob.es/?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=P60215901274203521811&langPae=es>

  • The Standard for eDocuments describes eDocuments as including content, eSignatures, and minimum required metadata, and the rules to exchange and copy them. The Annex contains a definition of the minimum required metadata, XML schemas for document exchange, and basic information on the signature of eDocuments. The eDocument structure allows the use of eSignatures as envisaged in the Commission Decision 2011/130/EU.

  • The Standard for eFiles describes the structure of eFiles, including eDocuments, eIndexes, eSignatures, and minimum required metadata, and the specifications to send them and make them available. The Annexes contain a definition of the minimum required metadata and XML schemas for file exchange. The eFile structure allows the use of sSignatures as envisaged in the Commission Decision 2011/130/EU.

  • The Standard for eDocument Digitisation describes the components of a digitised eDocument, including digital images, eSignatures, and metadata, and the rules to digitise paper documents by P.A.s in compliance with applicable formats, quality levels, technical conditions and standards.

  • The Standard for eDocument Authentic Copy and Conversion Procedures establishes the rules for the production and issue of authentic eCopies and authentic paper copies of eDocuments in P.A.s, and for the format conversion of eDocuments by P.A.s.

  • The Standard for eSignature and Certificate Policy sets forth the criteria for the development or incorporation of certificate-based eSignature policies by P.A.s. It describes the contents of certificate-based eSignature policies, determining the characteristics of common rules like formats, use of algorithms, or signature creation and validation for eDocuments, as well as the trust rules for eCertificates, timestamps, and long-term signatures.

  • The Standard for Requirements for Connection to the Communications Network of Spanish P.A.s sets forth the conditions under which every agency in the P.A. can access the SARA Network, describes the functions and responsibilities of the agents connecting to said network, and establishes the requirements to connect to, access, and use the services provided through it.

  • The Standard for Data Mediation Protocols defines the roles of the actors involved in mediated data exchanges and sets forth the conditions for mediated data exchange processes with the mediation platform of the Ministry of Finance and Public Administration, which can apply to the mediation platforms of other P.A.s. These are the conditions to be satisfied by public administrations providers and consumers in the access to base registries.

  • The Standard for E-Document Management Policies describes the concepts related to e-document management policy development, identifies document management processes in e-government and sets forth the principles for the development and implementation of e-document management policies by all P.A.s.

  • The Standard for Data Models establishes the conditions to design and publish the data models (semantic assets) regarding model formats, identification and documentation, use, definition and encoding, and interaction with the Semantic Interoperability Centre, publishing data models, in line with European standards and practices sponsored by JOINUP.

  • The Standard for the Catalogue of standards establishes the conditions for the selection of standards, maintenance and use of standards for eGov services.

Policy context

The National Interoperability Framework, established in Article 42, Section 1, of Law 11/2007 of 22 June, on Citizens’ eAccess to Public Services, is aimed at creating the conditions necessary to guarantee an adequate level of technical, semantic and organisational interoperability of the systems and applications used in the Public Administration, allowing the exercise of rights and the fulfilment of obligations through eAccess to public services, while acting in the interest of effectiveness and efficiency.

Royal Decree 4/2010, of 8 January, regulating the National Interoperability Framework for eGovernment, establishes in Additional Provision 1 the development of a series of Technical Interoperability Standards (Interoperability Agreements), which must be complied with in the Public Administration.

These Technical Interoperability Standards have been developed with the participation of all Public Administrations (General State, Regional Local) in Spain through the Administration Bodies with competences in the field of eGovernment. They are being published in the Official Gazette and thery are available at the Portal Administracion Electronica (PAE) <http://administracionelectronica.gob.es/?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=P60215901274203521811&langPae=es>.

During the last four years more than a hundred experts of Public Administrations have contributed to their elaboration.

Description of target users and groups

  • Public Administrations of Spain: managers and civil servants responsible for the planning, design, procurement, development, deployment, operation of systems for eGoverment services.
  • ICT Industry providers of  Public Administrations.

Description of the way to implement the initiative

Royal Decree 4/2010, of 8 January, regulating the National Interoperability Framework for eGovernment, establishes in Additional Provision 1 the development of a series of Technical Interoperability Standards (Interoperability Agreements), which must be complied with in the Public Administration.

The Technical Interoperability Standards describe specific aspects of a wide range of topics such as eDocuments, digitisation, eFiles, authentic copy and conversion, signature policy, standards, data brokerage, data models, eDocument management, connection to the communication network of the Spanish Public Administration, and data models for the exchange of registry entries and declarations of conformity, all of which are necessary to guarantee the more practical and operational aspects of interoperability between Public Administration agencies and citizens. The Technical Operability Standards shall be further developed and improved over time, parallel to the progress of eGovernment services, their supporting infrastructure, and the evolution of technology, in order to meet the provision in Article 42.3 of Law 11/2007, of 22 June.

 

Main results, benefits and impacts

The Technical Interoperability Standards describe specific aspects of a wide range of topics such as eDocuments, digitisation, eFiles, authentic copy and conversion, signature policy, standards, data brokerage, data models, eDocument management, connection to the communication network of the Spanish Public Administration, and data models for the exchange of registry entries and declarations of conformity, all of which are necessary to guarantee the more practical and operational aspects of interoperability between Public Administration agencies and citizens.

Lessons learnt

The three main lessons learnt are the following:

1.     The need to address interoperability from a completely global perspective including all aspects legal, organisational, semantic, technical, common infrastructures and services, standards and the notion of share, reuse and collaborate, as well as lessons learnt from other equivalent initiatives.

2.     The importance of taking into account the points of view and contribution of all stakeholders involved. These Technical Interoperability Standards have been developed with the participation of all Public Administrations in Spain: Central, Regional, Local, Universities and Justice. During the last three years more than a hundred experts of Public Administrations have contributed to their elaboration.  During the elaboration process it has been taken into account a wide number of references about eGovernment and interoperability coming from the European Union, other countries, standardization bodies and forums and national legislation.

3.     The importance of introducing the common elements and language of interoperability in our legal basis.

Case Info

Acronym:
ENI-NTI
Start date:
30 June 2011
Operational date:
30 June 2011

Information

Target Users or Group:
Administrative, Business (industry)
highlight:
eAccessibility practice, policy, monitoring and impact, eGovernment, ePractice, IT-Governance, National Interoperability Framework Observatory, Service provision through TV for seniors
Case status:
Operation
Funding source:
Public funding national
Geographic coverage:
Spain
Implementation cost:
Not applicable / Not available
Keywords:
e-document, Interoperability, Standards
Themes:
eGovernment, Infrastructure, Interoperability, Legal Aspects, Policy
My languages:
English, Spanish
Type of service:
IT Infrastructures and products
Scope:
Local (city or municipality), National, Regional (sub-national)
Yearly cost:
Not applicable / Not available
Return on investment:
Not applicable / Not available
Overall implementation approach:
Public administration
Technology choice:
Standards-based technology
Type of initiative:
Strategic initiative