User's Guide Book: Overview --> Open Standards
What is Open Document Exchange Format? Most of today’s electronic office documents have been created by a few commercial software programmes and more often than not each one has its own format. To allow users to process a document they need in many instances to have the same programme (and corresponding versions) or a filter that allows the document to be opened and modified.
Open document exchange formats would do away with this need. They remove dependency on products and technologies by using standardised formats that promise interoperability of document processing. Information exchange via documents being at the hearth of any public sector activity, document interoperability becomes a central issue in any eGovernment strategy.