Implementation of the Federal Council’s OGD Strategy

On 30 November 2018, the Federal Council approved the ‘Strategy for open administrative data in Switzerland, 2019-2023’ (Open Government Data Strategy, OGD Strategy). In accordance with this strategy, administrative offices from the central federal administration are generally speaking to publish their new data as OGD as of 2020, provided no legitimate personal interests or legal provisions prevent this from happening (open by default).

MeteoSwiss background

Under the meteorology law (german) currently in force, unrestricted introduction of OGD is not possible for weather and climate data. The topic is of particular interest, however.

Various studies on the economic benefits demonstrate that the added value of weather and climate data for authorities, industry and society is high – and likely to climb even higher in future. In neighbouring countries, weather and climate data are often therefore available free of charge.

The Federal Council’s OGD Strategy (german) provides for the need for legislative measures to be investigated and any amendments to the law be proposed to the Swiss National Council and Council of States. As one would expect, MeteoSwiss is also actively involved in this work.

The background outlined means that most weather and climate data of MeteoSwiss continue to be subject to a fee. The charges and conditions of use for the relevant data are governed by the ordinance (german) on meteorology and climatology (SR 429.11), the General Terms and Conditions for the standard service range of MeteoSwiss, as well as any additional contractual provisions (see Legal basis).

For the purpose of the Federal Council’s OGD Strategy, a limited set of data can be found on opendata.swiss. This enables users to familiarise themselves with the characteristics of our meteorological and climatological data.