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Thailand’s Big Data Institute for Driving Socio-Economic Development

To effectively manage the ever-increasing amount of data generated by the public and various state agencies, the government has announced the establishment of the Big Data Institute (BDI). This visionary initiative comes at a time when governments recognise the immense potential of big data in driving economic growth, fostering social advancements, and shaping future policies.

The Big Data Institute is ready to tackle these challenges. This innovation will serve as a centralised hub of knowledge and expertise, bringing together data scientists, researchers, and policymakers. By consolidating data from different sources and employing cutting-edge analytics tools, the BDI will unlock hidden patterns, correlations, and trends within the data. It enables evidence-based decision-making on an unprecedented scale, revolutionising the decision process.

To enhance public trust, the BDI will ensure data privacy, security, and ethical considerations are at the forefront of all activities. As data collection and analysis become increasingly intertwined with people’s lives, it is crucial to maintain public trust and confidence.

The Institute will prioritise strict data protection protocols, implement privacy-by-design principles, and promote transparent practices to safeguard individual privacy rights while obtaining meaningful insights from the data.

Establishing the BDI also signals a significant shift in the government’s approach to policymaking. By harnessing the power of big data analytics, policymakers will have access to real-time information and dynamic modelling capabilities, allowing them to make informed decisions with a comprehensive understanding of the potential impacts. This data-driven approach will enable the government to address societal challenges more effectively, identify emerging trends, and proactively design policies that adapt to changing circumstances.

The BDI will become operational within 180 days, replacing the current Government Big Data Institute (GBDi), established in May 2019. Positioned as Thailand’s pioneering public agency utilising big data for advanced society, the BDI will serve diverse sectors in their quest for data-centric solutions to tackle challenges, boost productivity, and shape economic policies.

One of the primary responsibilities of the Institute will involve delivering extensive data analysis services and backing innovative projects that adhere to international standards. Additionally, the BDI will actively foster the expansion of the data analysis industry and contribute to the professional training of individuals specialising in big data.

The BDI will assume authority, as stated in the Royal Gazette, to oversee the progress of big data in adherence to existing laws and government directives. This responsibility ensures compliance and ethical use of big data while harnessing its potential for public benefit. Additionally, the BDI will collaborate with public sector entities, seeking their cooperation, when necessary, to foster cross-sectoral partnerships and leverage expertise and resources for data-driven initiatives.

Operating under the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (DES), the Digital Economy Promotion Agency (Depa) has actively championed using big data for national development. During the Government Big Data Institute (GBDi) tenure, Depa played a crucial role in streamlining over 100 projects undertaken by 67 state agencies.

Furthermore, the GBDi contributed significantly to developing platforms like Health Link, Travel Link, Youth Link, and CO-Link, showcasing the potential of big data in addressing societal challenges and improving access to essential services.

The transition from GBDi to the BDI signifies the Thailand government’s ongoing commitment to leveraging big data for progress. With the BDI’s authority and collaborative capabilities, it will build upon the achievements of its predecessor, promoting the adoption of big data solutions across sectors and driving innovation, efficiency, and evidence-based decision-making.

The BDI, supported by Depa and other stakeholders, will continue to ensure responsible and regulated use of big data, harnessing its transformative potential for the benefit of future society.


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