Ukrainian consumers can now approach the energy sector through an accessible, easy-to-read format. The online map has gathered information on 4 products – electricity, heat, gas, and petroleum products. “We simply tried to explain how primary energy products are transformed into the end product, delivered to the consumer, and how they are interconnected,” Roman Nitsovych, program manager of DiXi Group, said during a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. Rob Pitman, Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI), underlined that data availability for citizens is one of the main conditions of transparency in the sector. “This map is very impressive. […] It is easy to understand. Ordinary citizens can easily read it,” he said.
Andrii Perevertaiev, an expert in electric power engineering, noted that the map presents how the whole industry works. Roman Nitsovych said that it was created on the basis of data available in public access. He noted that, unfortunately, data administrators lack a culture of operating the data. Tetiana Boyko, coordinator of residential programs of the civic network “OPORA”, noted they devote 90% of efforts to only collect data. “We are being constantly confronted with incorrect, incomplete data, or one that is presented in a format inconvenient for automatic processing,” Serhii Milman, Founder and CEO of YouControl said. He stressed that over the past six months the data quality has worsened. “The quality and volume of data in any field indicate the level of corruption in this area. The data scarcity and its poor quality indicates that the state is probably not interested in transparency in this area, ” Mr. Milman added.
Roman Nitsovych said that there is also “Investigation” section on the map. It gathered information on the most high-profile journalistic investigations in the energy sector over the past 5 years. “Going through different sections of the map you can see where most complaints and questions are,” the expert added. The “Black boxes” section has gathered the energy market areas that have little or no information. “We also aim at opening these black boxes”, Roman Nitsovych said.
The map will be updated upon the arrival of new data. “We now have a so-called working group with the Ministry of Energy. They have agreed to open even more data than there is now. And now we are trying to do an audit of information with the Ministry. We ask a coalition of experts, and investigative journalists to let us know what information they need. In this way, we create a request and demand for open data, ” Olena Pavlenko, president of the DiXi Group Analytical Center, said. She stressed that if the Ministry continues to show such willingness for cooperation, the map will contain more data, and the data on the Ministry of Energy website will be presented in a more easy-to-read format.
Roman Nitsovych added that there is a source reference under each data pack, so as to verify its accuracy. All information is available for download in a format convenient for further work.