On March 2019, Etalab - the Task Force under the French Prime Minister's Office in charge of open data and open government, responsible for the portal www.data.gouv.fr - published their guide for public algorithms to be used by public administrations to increase transparency. This public algorithm will, for example, calculate the amount of housing tax per household, determine if an individual is eligible for social assistance, or manage the mobility of teachers.
The document is composed of three parts:
- Contextual elements, focusing on what algorithms are, how algorithms contribute to the public sector, and the distinction between automated decisions and cases where algorithms are decision-supporting tools.
- Ethics and responsibility with using algorithms to enhance transparency. For example, why - and how - administrations must report on their use of algorithms, how these tools can help make more just and fair decisions, and the principles of transparency, intelligibility, and loyalty.
- The legal framework for transparency in algorithms, particularly with the adoption of the Law for a Digital Republic. This includes a set of obligations that need to be applied in the decision-making process of administrations.
For more information about the guide for public algorithms, read Etalab's article on "Public Algorithms: Etalab publishes a guide for administrations".