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Establishing a cross-authority master data management system

Master data is defined as fundamental information which the administration needs for its activities or which is required for ongoing business processing. Examples include information on individuals, companies, places, buildings and land. "Joint master data" refers to master data that is relevant for more than one administrative unit.
Joint master data management is an important component for supporting the digital transformation of public services. The master data defined at federal level should also be made available to the cantonal and communal public administrations.
In the future, master data that is used multiple times should be jointly managed and made available for use to administrations at all federal levels and other authorised circles. Joint master data management enables citizens and companies to provide data to the administration "once only" and allows the authorities to provide their services more efficiently and in a more customer-oriented manner. This reduces the burden on both citizens and businesses.

Description of target state

As part of this implementation objective, an overview of the legal, organisational and technical measures required to enable cantonal and communal administrations to access federal master data will be prepared. In addition, an identification and documentation system is to be prepared that shows in which core registers or national services the master data and associated unique identifiers are kept. A proposal for a governance model for the national data infrastructure will also be produced.
The following core registers and reference systems are of particular interest:
  • Business and Enterprise Register (BER)
  • Business Identification Register (UID)
Buildings and geodata:
  • Register of Buildings and Dwellings (RBD)
  • Federal geodata infrastructure (FGDI)
  • Communal and cantonal registers of residents via national address service
The long-term objective is that the coordination of these five basic registers and infrastructures should take place under a central "National data infrastructure" umbrella organisation, but that the management of these basic registers and infrastructures should be ensured on a decentralised basis.

Measures supported in the implementation plan

Measures End date
Develop a technical concept, reference architecture and organisational concept for the management of registers in accordance with the once only principle in cooperation with offices of the Federal Administration and a pilot canton (scope: individuals, businesses, buildings and apartments, as well as geodata). 31.12.2023
Draw up an inventory of the master data used by the Confederation, the cantons and the communes in cooperation with all levels of government; compile a national data glossary that is comprehensible for all specialist areas. 31.12.2023
Conduct a pilot project at the FSO and a pilot canton.


Strategy for the expansion of the federal joint master data management system (in German)

Organisation responsible for the project

Federal Department of Home Affairs, DHA
Federal Statistical Office, FSO
Espace de l'Europe 10, CH-2010 Neuchâtel

Contact person: Bertrand Loison (ad interim)
Contact: Bertrand.Loison@bfs.admin.ch, +41 58 46 36770